For the last two seasons Barcelona and Real Madrid have been clearly the best two teams in the world. The 2011 Champions League was effectively decided by their epic Semi Final clash which was won 3-1 on aggregate by Barcelona. Last season, most people expected the two teams to meet in a Super Clasico of a Champions League Final but both surprisingly stumbled at the semi final stage. Both Barcelona and Real Madrid will again be leading contenders for next season's Champions League. However, both clubs face the same problem to maintaining their position of pre-eminence.
Paris St Germain (PSG) is another club with extremely wealthy owners. The fact that were prepared to pay the 40-50 million euros that Milan want for Thiago Silva shows that they wish to be serious players on the European stage. Their action made it impossible for Barcelona to continue their pursuit of the Brazilian defender. Such a scenario may well be often repeated in the future as transfer fees for top players have reached ludicrous levels. Barcelona will simply not be able to complete financially with those clubs with extremely wealthy owners who are prepared to spend whatever it takes to win titles.
Fortunately, there is a solution for Barcelona, one that has always served them well: La Masia will continue to produce quality players that should enable Barcelona to remain competitive at the highest level. I have come to the conclusion that the only player we should buy for next season is Jordi Alba as we do need a starting left back. David Villa's return from injury effectively gives us a new striker. Hopefully, Gerard Pique can regain fitness, form and focus effectively giving us the new central defender we need. La Masia graduates such as Marc Bartra, Marc Muniesa and Martin Montoya should be given their chance to contibute. They all have talent and simply need the guidance of the experienced players.
I have read with alarm that Christian Tello and Thiago Alcantara may well be sold with Liverpool and Manchested United respectively mentioned as possible destinations. Losing either of these two players would potentially be as bad for Barcelona as was losing Cesc Fabregas nearly a decade ago.
One other thing that Barcelona must have is stability. I read with great concern that former president Joan Laporta, who has a bitter rivalry with current president Sandro Rosell, is considering running for president again at Barcelona's next election. Both Rosell and Laporta have strengths and weaknesses. I know it is a pipe-dream but I would like to see them working together for the good of Barcelona. The last thing that we need is a divisive civil war between these two.
While the future for Barcelona will be very challenging, we aleady have the solution - La Masia. The club must continue to improve its financial position as maintain a quality team is a very expensive exercise.
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Posted by: Drago , Columnist at 'Culé Talk'