despite the irruption of Fermín, La Masia hits rock bottom in the first team

despite the irruption of Fermín, La Masia hits rock bottom in the first team

BarcelonaPutting on the Blaugrana shirt, being part of La Masia, debuting at the Camp Nou or winning titles with Barça used to be the dreams of any child or football fan. But it’s been a while since the younger players have chosen to leave Barça’s ranks in search of opportunities outside the club. The transition from the subsidiary to the first team is complicated, few players have patience and abandon the dream halfway. The last to fly was Arnau Tenas, PSG’s new goalkeeper.

If there is one thing that characterizes Barça, or so it was until now, it is the large number of stars trained in its squad who have succeeded in the first team. This is the case of Iniesta, Xavi, Guardiola or Messi himself, winner of seven Ballon d’Or. All of them were raised in the nursery and touched the sky with the Blaugrana jersey. The road was not easy. Some were even close to giving up and leaving the club. The wait was worth it and the rest is history.

Messi has only just embarked on his particular American dream, but a few years ago he was living and training at La Masia. Aureli Altimira had him under his command at Barça C and years later in the first team with Pep Guardiola. Today he still has good words for the Argentine star: ”He was spectacular. At 16 and in less than a season he went from playing for Juvenil B to Barça Atlètic after leaving behind four categories. You watched him train and he was a freak. Time has proved us right. It’s a product created in-house and we can’t let that slip”, he explains to the ARA with emotion.

Despite the importance of La Masia and its players, the number of footballers in the house has been affected and this season the first team will start with only seven players from the squad with professional records. The lowest record in recent years. The arrival of Fermín López, hero of the Barça-Madrid weekend, does not contradict reality. And the fact is that a replacement has not been found at the base to cover the losses of Piqué, Busquets and Jordi Alba, a generation present at Barça for more than ten years. Of this, Sergi Roberto is the only player who is still in the first team. What’s more, this season he was named first captain.

Barça Atlètic and the great dilemma: formative football or a place in the Second Division

Subsidiaries were common in the Second Division during the 1980s and 1990s, but today they have accumulated two decades with a protagonist on the decline. In fact, this season, none of the four subsidiary teams that contested the play-off of promotion to Segona reached the goal. Barça Atlètic was one of them.

However, the Barça subsidiary has been the only team to have played five consecutive seasons in the Second Division this century: it was between 2010 and 2015. The 2017-2018 season completed its last year in the silver category . At that time, in that squad there were great players such as Carles Aleñá, Marc Cucurella or Abel Ruiz, all trained at home, debutants with the first team and consolidated today in First League teams.

The real goal of the Blaugrana subsidiary

It is essential that the priority of both Barça Atlètic and La Masia is to educate, train and grow the players. Workers, coaches and people in the area assure that it is not essential to have a team in the elite or Primera RFEF, but the most important thing is to consolidate the players because it has been shown that they can make the jump being two categories below. Now, however, the subsidiary is an unstable place, with 10 departures and arrivals every year and semi-unknown signings that threaten the prominence of the footballers trained in the academy. “That’s why it’s difficult for a game idea to work,” says Altimira. The trend also continues in the first team, where the famous Barça DNA is on the decline. Ronald Araujo, signed directly for B, is the only recent case that has consolidated in the first team.

The fact that every season a junior from the subsidiary or the youth ranks is a success for La Masia”

Aureli Altimira Ex-responsible for training football at Barça

From the base, to the first team

November 25, 2012 will be forever etched in the club’s history. That day, Tito Vilanova lined up 11 players trained at La Masia in a League match against Levante. The base of Barça in the six cups was made up of players from the house, as well as the Spanish team, which won the World Cup in South Africa and the subsequent European Cup wearing Blaugrana.

Players trained at La Masia in the Barça first team

*With a subsidiary file, but with continuity (more than 10 games) in the first team

**With youth card, but with continuity (more than 10 games) in the first team

ernesto valverde

and Quique Setién

Ronald Koeman i

Xavi Hernandez

*With a subsidiary file, but with continuity (more than 10 games) in the first team

**With youth card, but with continuity (more than 10 games) in the first team

ernesto valverde

and Quique Setién

Ronald Koeman i

Xavi Hernandez

*With a subsidiary file, but with continuity (more than 10 games) in the first team

**With youth card, but with continuity (more than 10 games) in the first team

ernesto valverde

and Quique Setién

Ronald Koeman i

Xavi Hernandez

You have to go back to the 2008-2009 season. The arrival of Pep Guardiola marked the beginning of this era. In its first season, Santpedor had 11 players from the base: Valdés, Piqué, Puyol, Busquets, Xavi, Iniesta, Messi, Pedro, Bojan, Jeffren and Jorquera. This block was maintained over the next two campaigns, when a total of 22 home-grown players made their debuts. His successor, Tito Vilanova, set a record, and his technical assistant, Aureli Altimira, is proud of this milestone: “It will not happen again. 16 players from the squad with first team cards and an eleven where they were all from La Masia! Right now, the way football is set up, it’s practically impossible for this to happen again,” recalled the trainer and coach at the time.

Most of Guardiola’s ‘staff’ were people from the house. The players respected us and everything was easier. It’s what the club has had since childhood.”

Aureli Altimira Ex-responsible for training football at Barça

After the blank year with Tata Martino and the arrival of Luis Enrique, the presence of players from the house began to fall. With Valverde, Setién and Koeman, the minutes of the youngest players in the first team went down. And so until this season, Barça recorded the lowest number of players trained in the squad with professional records. Only seven will be under Xavi’s command: Iñaki Peña, Eric Garcia, Ansu, Sergi Roberto, Gavi, Balde and newcomer Oriol Romeu. The data is shocking: up to nine players from the squad less than a decade ago, when the club’s financial situation demanded more than ever a firm commitment to trained talent at zero cost.

2023-08-01 11:45:41
#irruption #Fermín #Masia #hits #rock #bottom #team

Comments

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *