Gabriel Moscardo is one of the breakout players in Brazil and could be a long-term Romeu replacement
Barcelona will fight for titles this season. Let no one doubt it. However, when the summer of 2024 arrives, the club will still not be able to compete with the big names in Europe in the transfer market, where they will once again be competing at a disadvantage, as was the case in the last window.
Aware of the scenario he has to deal with, Deco has already started to work on the design of Barça for next season, because he already knows which positions will have to be reinforced, and one of them is defensive midfield, where there is only one specialist: Oriol Romeu, as Frenkie De Jong has a different profile to what has traditionally been the Barça '4'.
And Barça have been presented with a market opportunity, which they will try to exploit and bring to fruition: Gabriel Moscardo, the 18-year-old defensive midfielder from Corinthians, who Deco tried to sign between May and June when he was not yet officially the club's sporting director.
The 'jewel' of the 'Timao', one of the great revelations of the year in Brazil, had a very good deal in place with Chelsea, but the negotiations stalled. And Deco, smart and shrewd, has already called Corinthians to put Barça in the thick of things.
The idea is to advance signings that, in just a few months, could end up having a prohibitive acquisition price. The example to follow is that of Vitor Roque, who, despite the financial constraints, Barça closed a deal for in July so that he could arrive in January. And all thanks to the complicity of the player and his agent, André Cury.
It won't be easy for Barcelona with Moscardo because Chelsea (someone will have to explain how they dribble FFP) have taken over from Manchester City's insatiable appetite and are shooting at anything that moves in Brazil. This year, the Blues have already signed several promising Brazilian players: left winger Angelo Gabriel (on whom Barça had a preferential option that was not exercised and now plays on loan at Strasbourg), pivot Andrey Santos (on loan at Nottingham Forest) and the '9' Deivid Washington, who alternates call-ups with Pochettino's team and U-21 matches.
Moscardo is a midfielder with a technical profile that is much more suited to a team like Xavi's Barça, where the 'kids' have been empowered to make a difference by enjoying the ball, than to Chelsea's rockiness.
Deco will press the accelerator in this operation because he is convinced that, given the quality and the high level of the 'Timao' pivot, it is one of those signings that is a 'now or never.'