Marcos Alonso will continue for a second season at FC Barcelona

Marcos Alonso will continue for a second season at FC Barcelona

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The defender only signed a one-year deal but no one expects him to leave in the summer

One of the things Xavi asked for this summer was an experienced left-back. He needed someone to compete with or even take the place of Jordi Alba.

Marcos Alonso was the chosen one. His signing had to wait until the last moment but he ended up joining Barça at the end of the window after terminating his contract with Chelsea.

That Barça pushed until the last minute gives an idea of the importance Alonso has for the coaching staff, as could be seen in Munich as he was thrown in for his full debut in the Champions League.

Alejandro Balde's excellent preseason surprised even Xavi. The Barça coach has planned to let the youngster go on loan but ended up keeping him around, accelerating the succession plan at left-back.

Prior to Alonso's arrival. Xavi had bet on Balde and left Alba on the bench. But in the first big game of the season against Bayern he went for Alonso over Balde and Alba. Alonso responded with a good performance.

Defensively he was good against a good Bayern attack. Unfortunately, the only time he switched off led to a goal. He lost Lucas Hernandez at the corner which the Germans opened the scoring from -- and quickly apologised to his teammates.

Barça's coaching staff calmed the player down, making him see that they were more than happy with his performance.

Alonso is set to play a lot of big games this season at Barça and, while he only has an initial one-year contract, next season as well. It was a surprise when the one-year deal was announced but it was fair play related.

Both parties, however, have a pact that the terms will extend into a second season. If nothing strange happens, that will be the case. Because Xavi likes Alonso and because his performances should only get better as he gets to know his new teammates.

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