Barça's left-back plans: Alba, Gaya, Pedraza, Angeliño, Miranda & Balde

The Catalan club are thinking long-term with Jordi Alba set to turn 32 in March

Barcelona are in a tricky position when it comes to making plans for the future. The new sporting director, chosen by the new president, who will be elected on Jan. 24, will be tasked with making decisions. 

Toni Juanmartí

@tjuanmarti

However, in some cases, the plans already seem clear. That's true at left-back, where everything suggests Junior Firpo will be sold in the summer. Barça need to sell players to balance their books and to fund other deals. 

Junior is one player they believe will bring in some cash. He's not playing regularly and it's felt it's best to let him go. He was close to leaving last summer, but didn't in the end. 

Barça's plan is to replace him with someone who, in time, can become the 'New Jordi Alba.' Alba is 32 in March and even though he's in good form, long-term plans need to be made. 

There is a list of candidates, led by Jose Luis Gaya and including Alfonso Pedraza and Angeliño. 

Gaya, 25, has not stopped growing at Valencia and is a regular for Spain under Luis Enrique. The chaos at Valencia means they would probably sell, although Barça don't have much money. 

Villarreal's Pedraza is also liked by those currently at Barça. A winger who became a full-back, he has already set up three goals in La Liga this season, the same as Alba, Gaya and Yuri Berchiche, the league's most efficient full-backs. 

Pedraza would probably be cheaper than Gaya, too, which is a factor that could be important. 

The third name on the list is RB Leipzig's Angeliño. The Galician, on loan from Manchester City, has scored eight goals and set up eight more for the German side. He's even played in midfield. 

Barça's problem is that his reputation has shot up and there could be a battle to sign him, with City likely to ask for a big fee. 

After various failed attempts to find Alba's heir, in Lucas Digne and Junior, Barça are also thinking of using an in-house player as a backup. 

In that sense, Juan Miranda, on loan at Real Betis, and Alejandro Balde, currently part of the B team, come into the equation. 

In an ideal world, in two-three years, both would be an option to compete for the spot with the more experienced left-back who may replace Alba in time, although the financial reality means Miranda may have to be the option this summer.

In that case, they would then re-assess the situation in 2022.  

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