The coach knows who his preferred Busquets replacement is
Barcelona are remodelling their squad and started it last summer, but there are positions still to work on. One of them is the pivot role. Sergio Busquets has no natural replacement, although Frenkie de Jong and Franck Kessie have played there. He is also out of contract at the end of the season and is expected to depart after a long and successful era at Camp Nou.
So the sports staff have been looking for pivots. They like a few, including Ruben Neves and Jorginho, but Xavi has made it clear whom he prefers for the role - Martin Zubimendi, at Real Sociedad.
The technical team think that the young 23 year old is the closest thing to Busquets on the market. He’s a positional player, who reads the game well and doesn’t complicate life. He plays with one touch better than two, and is a good long range passer. Barcelona also like his strength.
“He’s always there to help team-mates on the pitch, to give them solutions, like Busquets,” Barca say.
Zubimendi is Xavi’s bet although it won’t be easy because he has a 60m euro release clause and La Real may not negotiate below that. He signed a new deal until 2027 but the clause did not rise. “That’s not a coincidence,” Barca believe, refusing to deny that there have been conversations with the player already.
Jorginho, who would be free, is also liked by the club and Mateu Alemany has met his agents. N’Golo Kante is also a target. Xavi likes him but his injury issues have lowered his status. Youri Tielemans of Leicester is also interesting and out of contract, with Arsenal sniffing.