Xavi considering using Barcelona CB as a defensive midfielder – report
While Barcelona have a fair few positions to strengthen during the summer transfer window, they have options ready in all but one of them.
Juan Foyth could be the next right-back, while one of Victor Roque or Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang are options as Robert Lewandowski backups. Inigo Martinez has already been signed, too, while the agreement for Ilkay Gundogan is very close.
That said, Barcelona are yet to find a long-term solution to their problems in defensive midfield. Martin Zubimendi is Xavi’s choice to replace Sergio Busquets, but a move for him is extremely unlikely given his €60 million release clause.
In an attempt to find solutions, Xavi has reportedly tested Eric Garcia as a pivot in training, as per a report by Albert Roge. The coaching staff things his performances in that role are convincing that fans could see glimpses of it in La Liga soon.
While the crux of this experiment lies in the fact that Barcelona do not have a replacement for Busquets in the middle of the park, it could also help Eric get some much-needed playing time.
The Spaniard was part of Xavi’s first-choice starting lineup when the season started, partnering Ronald Araujo in central defence. Andreas Christensen gained prominence as the season went on, though, and has become a starter now.
To make matters worse for Eric, Marcos Alonso is also above him in the pecking order in central defence now, primarily because of his left-footedness.
Inigo Martinez has also been signed, according to Gerard Romero, which will likely create a ton of trouble for Eric.
With Barcelona 12 points clear at the top of the table in La Liga, Xavi will have some room for experimentation in the upcoming games.
Maybe not in the starting lineup, but should the Catalans gain control of games with a healthy scoreline, bringing on Eric as a pivot could definitely be an option.