FC Barcelona have been the centre of attention in the transfer market ever since the dawn of July, but with the club set to play soon, the pre-season performances of the players might soon take over.
While there is a lot of time to go for the transfer window to reach its conclusion, the dates and the fixtures for the pre-season have been announced.
The Catalan club will officially start their pre-season training on July 14, where players will appear for a full medical and physical examinations.
The Blaugrana will travel to three countries over the course of pre-season. They will kick-off the proceedings on July 23 against Chelsea, and will finish the preparations for the upcoming season on August 10 against Napoli.
Let’s look at three Barcelona players who need to make a statement in pre-season and put themselves in a good position for next season.
Frenkie de Jong
The former AFC Ajax midfielder has been the talk of the town ever since the club announced his signature, and the anticipation is brewing as he is a talented player.
De Jong’s versatility will bring a breath of fresh air to the Barcelona midfield, that had two players in Sergio Busquets and Ivan Rakitic who are entering the twilight of their career.
For many, De Jong has already shown the potential to be a starter and has what the fans refer to as ‘Barca DNA’ to succeed at the club.
Although he hasn’t even kicked a ball for the Blaugrana, his popularity shows how highly he is rated among Cules and almost everyone associated with the club will be excited to see him in a Blaugrana shirt.
The Frenchman arrived at Barcelona in January, and is currently the second choice right centre-back at the club, only behind Gerard Pique.
The pre-season will be a glorious opportunity for him to convince the manager for a regular starting spot next season.
With the Catalan club’s pursuit of another Ajax wonder-kid Matthijs de Ligt going nowhere, Todibo will seek to grasp this golden opportunity and make it his breakthrough season.
The 19-year-old, along with Ousmane Dembele, also arrived a week early to the training ground.
Alena is another La Masia graduate who joined the long list of players to be promoted to the first team from Barca’s famous youth academy.
The Spain under-21 International made the jump last season and produced some excellent displays in the limited opportunities he got under the current manager Ernesto Valverde.
In 1076 minutes of football spread over 27 appearances last season, Alena managed five goals and one assist.
It will be interesting to see how the left-footed central midfielder performs in the pre-season. He has always been hailed as a talent, so it’s about time Alena made a statement and give Valverde a good headache ahead of the season.