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Xavi plans to give minutes to 24-year-old Barcelona ace with La Liga title in the bag



Photo by JOE KLAMAR/AFP via Getty Images

With the La Liga title now sealed, Barcelona manager Xavi is rightly expected to shuffle his starting XI to a great extent and if a report from Javi Miguel is to be believed, young goalkeeper Inaki Pena will be one of the players who will get some minutes in the final stretch of the competition.

Pena, 24, has only made only three appearances this season, with two of them coming in Copa del Rey and the other in the UEFA Champions League. The stopper, who renewed his contract with Barcelona until 2026, will soon be rewarded with his first league appearance by the manager.

Although it is still not confirmed in which game the manager would replace the 24-year-old with Marc-Andre ter Stegen, the appearance could come anytime soon as Barcelona have no other competition to play. Meanwhile, what affirms his place in the team is the fact that ter Stegen is already assured of the Zamora trophy.

Barcelona are chasing a certain record. In the remaining matches of the season, the team will try to keep successive clean sheets to finish as the best side in the history of European football in terms of goals conceded. 

At this moment, the record is currently held by Jose Mourinho’s Chelsea side of the 2004/05 season when the Blues conceded just 15 goals.

Meanwhile, apart from Pena, players such as Pablo Torre, Eric Garcia, and even Franck Kessie will add get the opportunity to add minutes under their belt.

Torre, 20, has made a mere five league appearances this season while Garcia, who has been used in midfield as well, has appeared 20 times in the league.

Kessie, on the other hand, has been often used by Xavi, although the former Milan midfielder has been called upon from the bench more often than not. Considering the fact that his future is in limbo, the manager would want to keep the player happy in the final weeks if he is to depart in the summer.

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