At Barça, they have considered a maximum scenario in terms of transfers, but they are also aware that not everything will be possible. And the top priority for both Xavi and the sports area is to build a lethal attack with the continuity of Dembélé and the signings of Raphinha and Lewandowski.
Necessity recommends bringing two full-backs and the central position for Xavi is non-negotiable, but in the sports area it is practically covered. And here is debate. The coach blindly bets on Koundé as a strategic signing and is pressing for Barça to sign him, but in the sports area they know that Sevilla does not lower the price and they understand that, perhaps, it would be better to invest in a central defender with a left-handed profile.
That is why the Koulibaky option came in at the time, more affordable than Koundé, but he is a right-handed central defender who plays on the left. The executives would see better, if there is money, bring in a left-hander to complete the payroll of the four right-handers who are on the roster. And here, the almost impossible dream this summer is Monaco’s French Benoit Badiashile, a defender who is at the table of all the great technical secretariats of European football.
Badiashile is 21 years old and is a real central bomb. Physically imposing and with good technique, he has been the revelation center back in Ligue1, but the big handicap will be his appraisal. Monaco have sold Tchouaméni to Madrid for a fortune and they have no need to give outs. The only reality is that the market does not offer guaranteed left-handed central defenders and everything indicates that De Ligt, a footballer who was offered to Barça in January, is going to leave Juventus for a fortune that the Blaugrana club neither wants nor can match. Laporte is another of the profiles that would fit but it is also expensive.
Today the valid bet is still Koundé, while interest in Koulibaly has cooled off despite also having Xavi’s sporting OK. And the Badiashile option is looked askance. For now it’s almost impossible, but if he continues in Monaco and Barça ends up without signing a top-level central defender, he could be in pole position. He ends his contract in Monaco in 2024 so if he does not renew, he is market meat in 2023.
Important decisions are coming, although the first signings that will fall are those from above. From there, and with the money that remains, it will be decided or not to reinforce the central position. Koundé will not come for 65 million euros, although if there is a discount, everything could be redirected. But the thing should not be so clear when the sports area looks at left-handed profiles.