It’s no news that Barcelona’s defense was at sixes and sevens last season and conceded 7 goals from direct defensive errors in their domestic campaign.
In addition to that, five penalties were given away and this has raised concerns about the future of the defenders at the club and possible replacements.
One of the players that will likely be affected by the cut in order to revamp the club’s backline is Samuel Umtiti based on a report by Alfredo Martinez. The French defender has been told that he is not in the club’s plans ahead of the 2021/22 season.
Umtiti was formerly regarded as the next big thing with regards to quality center-backs in Europe some time ago. The Frenchman picked up a pressing injury but refused to undergo surgery as it would prevent him from participating in the 2018 World Cup in Russia.
The decision is one he didn’t regret as the French team emerged as champions of the competition after beating Croatia in the final. He was incredible for France in the competition but has not produced such quality displays at Barcelona.
It can be recalled that Umtiti picked up two injuries in the 2018/19 season and missed 28 games. This resulted in the loss of his starting place in the team to Clement Lenglet and he has not won it back since then.
Meanwhile, regardless of Barca’s visible defensive problems last season, the services of the French defender were not needed and Ronald Araujo impressed Ronald Koeman while the rise of Oscar Mingueza was very noticeable.
The combo deployed by Koeman was Gerard Pique, Clement Lenglet, and occasionally Frenkie de Jong in a backline combination was rarely maintained. The club currently have five central defenders including Samuel Umtiti and recently added Eric Garcia, and a move for Aymeric Laporte is being speculated.
It is believed that Umtiti’s departure this summer will be a priority for the club due to his injury worries and the huge wages he commands.
However, Joan Laporta has his work cut out for him to get a club that would be interested in his services and offer a fee that will meet Barca’s valuation of the player.