Ronald Koeman is well aware of the limitations concerning Ousmane Dembélé. The Frenchman is an incredible asset and a highly talented player. However, he is also injury prone and Barcelona can’t afford to use him relentlessly.
For that reason, the young winger has been on the bench for the last couple of games despite performing on a regularly high level whenever chosen to play. According to a new report from SPORT, however, Dembélé is expected to start Barcelona’s upcoming Champions League clash against Ferencváros.
This is a direct result of another encouraging performance just the other night against Osasuna. The Frenchman came off the bench and even scored a great goal before it was ruled offside. We’ve also seen him play at the Wanda Metropolitano stadium against Atlético Madrid but back then, he sprained his shoulder so Koeman had to be extra careful going into the next games.
But the main thing is that Dembélé is still very much an important part of the squad and offers a unique profile to the coach. For that reason, and seeing how he’s once again 100% fit, everything indicates he’ll be back in the gala XI on Wednesday, as SPORT suggest.
This, needless to say, is a rather encouraging sign for a player who was so close to leaving the club during the summer transfer window.
Long may it continue!
Official: Barcelona starting XI to face Rayo Vallecano — Leo Messi starts
Barcelona have announced the starting XI that will take on Rayo Vallecano in the Copa del Rey round of 16. The biggest news? Lionel Messi is back! The captain starts through the centre, with Antoine Griezmann and Fransisco Trincao rounding the front three off from the left and right respectively.
Behind them, Riqui Puig gets his second start of the season on the back of his first goal for Barcelona. He is joined by Frenkie de Jong and Sergio Busquets in the midfield triumvirate.
Neto is given the responsibility to handle the gloves for this encounter, and screening him are Ronald Araujo and Clement Lenglet in the heart of the defence. Oscar Mingueza and Junior Firpo will give the width from the backline, finishing off the XI in the Kings’ Cup.
Confirmed XI: Neto; Mingueza, Araujo, Lenglet, Firpo; de Jong, Busquets, Puig; Trincao, Messi, Griezmann
Lionel Messi and Riqui Puig seemed to connect to each other last season starting together against Atletico Madrid and Deportivo Alaves, and tonight will be the first time they play together extensively after a long time. Either way, any opportunity to watch Messi is a treat!