A triple prize for Barça's past, present and future... and the way forward

OPINION

@LluisMascaro

In 2010 Barcelona hit the Ballon d’Or podium with Messi, Iniesta and Xavi on it. The Pep Team was at their peak and Spain won the South Africa World Cup with Barcelona DNA at their core. Their dominance was incontestable. The awards recognised that. 11 years later, Barcelona were the big protagonists again. Two women’s players, Alexia Putellas, and Jenni Hermoso, took the top two positions. Pedri won the young player trophy. And the eternal Lionel Messi, lamentably at PSG, but always Cule at heart, won his seventh. The best player in history. This rainfall of recognition is soothing for Barcelona after a tough year with a treble crisis - sporting, economic and institutional. Barcelona celebrated their 122nd anniversary today too so the timing was perfect. A mix of the past (Messi), present (Alexia) and future (Pedri).

The treble that Barcelona managed last season is part of the club’s legend now. The whole team deserved to get up on the podium, but Alexia exemplified the strength of the squad that won all three trophies. It should serve as a guide for what the men’s team needs to do. A firm bet on the model and absolute and total commitment to the project. That’s the road to recover from all the failures and disappointments. The route that Xavi wants to implement to turn Barcelona into a champion side like Femeni.

The new coach has a huge challenge ahead of him, without the fortune of counting on a player like Messi, who would have made it easier. He will have to bet on the youths - Pedri - (plus Ansu, Gavi, Nico, Araujo, Abde and so on) to recover the success of the past. Who knows if among those players there will be a Ballon d’Or winner… 

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