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Six Barcelona youth talents that Xavi is observing in training to watch out for



Photo by PAU BARRENA/AFP via Getty Images

As Barcelona continue to struggle with the woes of the world, regaining their form, rebuilding their long-term project, rediscovering their identity and rejuvenating their finances, one pillar has remained a beacon of optimism.

La Masia, amid all the adversity, has continued to act as the foundation for the club, constantly honing talents and equipping them to be able to make a step up into the first team and thrive.

In Barcelona’s training session earlier today, Xavi had seemingly called up another big lot of young talents from the Juvenil A and Juvenil B teams to observe them in training.

The Catalans have not only struggled with a lack of energy and mobility in midfield (Gavi excluded) as a whole during their spell of faltering form, but lengthy injuries to Pedri and Frenkie de Jong have also impacted them severely.

With their budget looking stringent for the foreseeable future and squad depth a potential issue, it is no surprise that the Catalans are seeking more youngsters that can slot into the first team and keep holding the fort down.

Gems. (Photo by PAU BARRENA/AFP via Getty Images)

Just this season, Lamine Yamal and Fermin Lopez have broken through out of absolutely nowhere and look like they are set to be mainstays in the first team for years to come with their immense technical potential.

Let us take a look this crop of names, whose development will be worth keeping an eye out for if Xavi decides to call them up during the course of the season.

Albert Navarro

The 16-year-old left-back arrived as a junior in 2016 from Damm, and has been ingrained into the Barcelona system since.

He is said to possess a fantastic left-footed strike of the ball and is a specialist from free kicks and is also very powerful.

His versatility has also drawn comparisons to Mika Marmol, as Navarro can also be deployed at centre-back.

Guillem Victor

The Juvenil B full-back who is now showing his class with the Juvenil A seems to be arguably the most exciting and versatile player of the lot.

While naturally a right-back, Victor can play at left-back, as an interior midfielder and as a pivot and can invert when playing wide.

He is very composed and exudes a certain elegance on the ball with great passing ability and is very clever with his movement in and out of possession – a profile similar to Joao Cancelo.

Nil Caldero

Caldero is an 18-year-old winger who can be deployed either on the left or right flank and also as a right wingback who arrived at Barcelona three years ago.

He is direct, pacy and is not afraid to take on his man and drive towards the box with a keen eye for goal, having already scored four times in 15 games for the Juvenil A.

Taking everyone on. (Photo by TOM GOYVAERTS/BELGA MAG/AFP via Getty Images)

His style of play has drawn comparisons with former Barcelona hero Pedro Rodriguez – a promising precedent.

Cristo Muñoz

Likened to Oihan Sancet, 18-year-old Muñoz possesses a wonderful stride and as a creative inside forward who can also play on the left or as a false nine, he is adept at entering the area and taking cracks at goal.

Arnau Pradas

It has already been a decade since the 18-year-old winger joined Barcelona’s youth setup and exhibits incredible close control with the ball glued to his left foot.

Functioning primarily as a left winger who can also play on the right and as an interior, and with immaculate dribbling technique he can beat players and find space that seemingly does not exist.

Oscar Gistau

A 15-year-old with a great ceiling, Gistau is a striker who can also play as a left winger with a relentless eye for goal.

He is relentless at pressing and has scored seven goals in his 13 appearances across the Juvenil A and B sides, impressing as he moves up the ranks.

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