Today’s newspaper covers are all about Barcelona trying to secure themselves for the future with Marc-Andre ter Stegen’s renewal standing out as the absolute priority for the Catalan club. But the future just might also be in La Masia as well.
Mundo Deportivo have gone with the German goalkeeper for their cover, saying ‘Priority renewal‘, which is quite self-explanatory. The key idea is to ensure their no.1 goalie stays at the club for many more years.
They have reportedly contacted the player’s entourage, who are ready to negotiate the new contract, and both parties seem to be optimistic regarding the deal being struck sooner rather than later.
Sport, on the other hand, are dealing with the whole squad rebuild rather than focusing on one man only like their counterparts. Their cover states ‘Operation renew‘ and has Barcelona’s young talismans gracing the photo.
And while yes, Ter Stegen’s renewal is the absolute priority, Barcelona also want to rebuild the whole squad and are willing to bet on the La Masia gems to carry them into the future.
Of course, there are also potential exciting new signings that could arrive at the club in the near future who seem good enough to start the whole renewal process. The board has seemingly come to its senses and understands the core of the squad is getting far too old.
It’s time to think about the future. Better late than never, huh?
Barcelona coach defends Ousmane Dembélé
Ronald Koeman, when asked about Ousmane Dembélé, has defended his French winger after the Getafe loss. Indeed, the Dutchman took off the Frenchman after Jaume Mata had scored the penalty.
Dembélé lost the ball many times in the game, especially in the first half, but picked it up a bit after the half-hour mark. After 325 days, Dembélé started his first game for Barça since that injury he suffered against Borussia Dortmund in the Champions League. After a frail start, the Frenchman looked more and more confident before getting subbed off.
Ronald Koeman defended his player by saying that this was his style of play and that he’s working really well towards getting more consistent. The former Everton and Southampton coach also praised the winger’s performance in the second half, admitting he played better and acknowledging his hard work. Koeman isn’t one to lie about his impressions on a player as he criticised his team’s performance by accusing them of not getting the ball to Leo Messi as much as they should.
“He’s training and doing well. He did lose possession a lot against Getafe, but it’s the way he plays. He played better in the second half, and he’s working hard to get minutes.”Ronald Koeman on Ousmane Dembélé in the pre-match press conference
Perhaps this means Dembélé, while not being particularly impressive on Saturday, has a future under Koeman and he might start ahead of the out-of-form Antoine Griezmann on the right. Hopefully, the former Dortmund winger will start against Ferencvaros in the Champions League, a perhaps easier opponent than Getafe away.