Barcelona coach Ernesto Valverde didn't want to openly reveal his opinion on Riqui Puig's future, saying it's a decision which will be made by the player and the club. However, he did suggest he was behind a change of scenery for the young, talented midfielder.
"Riqui Puig's future is between him and the club," Valverde said of the midfielder, who is currently playing for Barça's B team in the Spanish third division. "We want him close to the (first) team. But there's a lot of competition in his position. We will have to evaluate it later."
Real Zaragoza coach Victor Fernandez is really keen to have Riqui Puig join his side on loan in the Spanish second tier.
Valverde even cited the case of Marc Cucurella, who is now at Getafe following a loan spell with Eibar: "Marc, for example, is a different player to the one he was 18 months ago" when he left Barça.
Despite all the arguments, Valverde returned to his initial message and said that "it's something that the player and the club have to decide. We're going to wait until January and see what happens here."
The debate has grown around Riqui Puig in recent weeks and the possibility of him going on loan in January has been touted. Barça's director of youth football, Patrick Kluivert, voiced his preference for the player to go out on loan. In principle. Riqui Puig has always shown a desire to remain with the Catalan club but his stance has softened recently.