Thiago Silva To Barcelona? No, Thanks! 5 Central Defenders Barcelona Should Consider Instead

I must admit I am increasingly annoyed about the obsession the Catalan media seem to have towards signing of Thiago Silva from AC Milan this summer. It really feels like one can simply not read any Barcelona-related news without the Brazilian centre-back's name popping up at some stage. Is he really the only central defender on Earth?

Thiago Silva, A Brilliant Defender With An Insane Price Tag

Thiago Silva is an extremely talented, strong, experienced defender who has been excelling with AC Milan and the Brazilian national team for years. It would be stupid to deny that signing him would mean a leap forwards in terms of squad quality for Barcelona, especially considering how our defense has suffered this season.

In recent days I have heard reports explaining that AC Milan representatives value Thiago Silva at 50M€. In times when the European economy is suffering tremendously, paying that much money for a football player sounds frivolous. 

Don't be fooled: AC Milan won't give up their Brazilian defender unless Barcelona (or anybody else, for all they care) present them with a disgustingly insane amount of fresh euros.

To make matters even worse, Thiago Silva reportedly demands a 1M€ wage each month. Who does this guy think he is? Some sort of Brazilian Lionel Messi? Unbelievable...

Big money in this year's transfer window is only in the hands of multimillionaires who have 'bought' their respective clubs: PSG (who just had a 46M€ offer rejected), Manchester City, Chelsea and Malaga. Considering President Rosell's long-term plan to pay our huge debt off within a reasonable time-frame, it looks like Barcelona simply can't afford to spend that much money on players any time soon.

Barcelona famously have a strict self-imposed 35M€ transfer budget limit per season since Rosell took charge of the club. That allowance can only increase by selling current players - which is why I think the club should be open to offers for players such as Keita, Tello or Afellay

As things stand, expecting to see Thiago Silva wearing the Blaugrana next season is simply science fiction.

5 Central Defenders Barcelona Should Consider Instead Of Thiago Silva

As I explained in my previous articles, I feel Barcelona need a quality left-back, a central defender and a taller striker - although Tito Vilanova publicly denied the need for a new 'Plan B' attacker, this possibility is still being considered behind closed doors. 

If reports are true and Valencia agree to sell Jordi Alba for around 12M€, Barcelona would still have around 23M€ left to invest in a reliable central defender. Not much, but a considerable amount of money if you analyse the market in detail.

Here are 5 central defensive options that Barcelona should consider at this stage:

Javi Martínez: The 23 year-old Basque Giant is my main choice as he has a proven La Liga record and could play as central defender or defensive midfielder if needed. Sure, his Athletic Bilbao buyout clause is 40M€ but I'm sure he can force a slightly cheaper way out of La Catedral if Barcelona went all out for him.

Iñigo Martínez: The Real Sociedad left-footed defender has been followed by the Barcelona scouts for years. Good with the ball and strong in the air, the 21 year-old has even gone on to score 3 goals in his first La Liga season - some of them were spectacular! Currently injured.

Thomas Vermaelen: 26 year-old Belgium international, currently at Arsenal, 40 Premiership appearances and 6 goals this season. Recently signed a long-term contract with The Gunners though.

Neven Subotic: 23 year-old Serbian international, currently at Borussia Dortmund, 16 goals in 182 Bundesliga appearances. One for the future.

Jan Vertonghen: 24 year-old Belgium international, currently captain at Ajax, 240 appearances and a massive 31 goals since his professional debut at just 18 years of age. Tottenham seem to be close to signing him for just 10M. If Barcelona want him, we need to act fast.

What We Learned

Blowing our whole budget on Thiago Silva would be suicidal. Spending over 46M€ to sign a central defender who has not even hinted his desire to come to Barcelona is a massive mistake, as is wasting time even considering the transfer.

Have the Barcelona scouts missed the brilliant season by Javi Martinez as Bilbao's center-back and how well he relates to the Barcelona internationals when playing for Spain? Surely not.

If Rosell, Zubizarreta and Tito Vilanova are as intelligent as all Cules hope they are, Javi Martinez must become first priority once the signing of Jordi Alba as left-back is completed.

If Athletic Bilbao refused our initial attempts, then Jan Vertonghen from Ajax sounds like a cheaper but reasonable option which should definitely be considered. 

And if all else fails, Tito Vilanova can always look to our La Masia academy for alternatives - Don't forget players such as Fontas, Bartra or Muniesa will all be first team defensive options after the summer.

Let's hope the Barcelona directors make the right choice: Next season, the first Post-Guardiola project, must be a success in order to ensure a calm, bright future at the Camp Nou.


Have Your Say 

What did you think of this article?

Do you think Barcelona should sign Thiago Silva regardless of his price tag?

Who would you prefer for the central defender role: Javi Martinez, Iñigo Martínez, Thomas Vermaelen, Neven Subotic or Jan Vertonghen? Why?

 Did I miss out on any important points you would like to share with us?

 I welcome and appreciate all respectful feedback.

 Força Barça!!

 Posted by: Francesc Tomàs
 Founder and Columnist at

 Join our 27,500 followers on Facebook or Twitter


  1. Olantunji16.6.12

    I totally agree with this report.And i strongly believe Tito,Zubi ß The Board led by Prst.S.Rosell wld make the best decision.Visca Barca!

  2. Sanur16.6.12

    Tomas, What do you think about Dede from Vasco Da Gama?. I have seen him all season and he is a beast. I have a feeling some European club will sign him, then he'll end up like Silva with a huge price tag.

  3. Anonymous16.6.12

    Have we forgotten that there is also a former youth product in Gijon's Alberto Botia! Barca still has that buy-back clause, and would come in on the cheap! He is mostly under the radar, but has shown some promise, is of good physique, and young! It's not like Mascherano will leave that post, also, the way he's been playing! Plus, Puyol and Abidal will be back for the CB position, once Jordi Alba & Adriano are playing as the LB's. Jordi Alba (12), Botia (3), and maybe even Villarreals Nilmar -for extra firepower up front(8) = 23 Million euros!

  4. Alvaro16.6.12

    No matter how expensive he is ... At this time there is no centerback as complete as Thiago .... You have to think that our Capitano will need replacing soon ... Bartra is from La Masia but lacks experience ...

  5. Big Dans16.6.12

    Mats hummels would be a fantastic addition as he is so similar to pique however the dortmund man will most likely have a excessively high price tag.

  6. Brent16.6.12

    German defender Hummels!!! He is better than every name on ur list Tom check him out

  7. Chioma Iwuamadi16.6.12

    I agree so much with this write up and do hope that the management of Barcelona do go through this article. Yes, Martinez is the right option here and he is quite young too and plays in la liga. I also love Fontas, Muniensa and Bartra (La Masia products) to be given the chance if that fails. They may lack experience but coming from La Masia and having to play with some of their role models will build up their confidence faster. As for a taller striker, Tello is tall enough and we do hope Villa gets back soonest.

  8. Anonymous16.6.12

    Mat hummel I'd the best obtion fellowed by Martinez! Alba or bale for left back!

  9. Hmm I'm from Belgium and believe me, Vermaelen and Vertonghen really arent good enough for Barca... The only Belgian defender thats good enough for Barca is Vincent Kompany but I think City will ask to much for him.
    And about Martinez, Id rather see him as CM and not in the center of the defence.
    Subotic or Hummeld would be good imo.

  10. First choice is Hans Hummels if he can be pried away from Dortmund, second being Jan Vertonghen who even at 12-15 million would be a steal.
    No offensive reinforcement is currently needed. We'll wait for Neymar's arrival in a year.

  11. Anonymous17.6.12

    Posted by juan 16 hours, 11 minutes ago
    Hi Barcelona are stupid they need to reinforce. I don't get it they are a top team and have no money something fishy is going on in the club. Or they dint know haw to negotiate, they need to spend money reinforce the bench too.I really want then to get van persie or falcao they do need a striker to help out messi they need to plan for future too they should have got eden hazard. Mario gotze Gareth bale they need to spend money I love Barca but management sucks. They need left back right back an center defender an a striker I really want to ser van persie or falcao up on top with messi plus get bale and Mario gotze jordi alba forget Silva now get another center back for the bench get tall striker so Chelsea game won't happen again. Spend Baca spend please I'm a big fan and want to see a better team don't tire your players out reinforce don't let messi inirsta xavi be fatigued tired because you don't spend please buy invest today and for future of Barcelona.

  12. Anonymous17.6.12

    Posted by Abdullahi 14 hours, 24 minutes ago
    Is better barcelona to sing thiago silva in ac milan in this season

    Posted by Zacks 13 hours, 14 minutes ago
    David Luiz is better and cheaper than T.Silva

    Posted by Shufiul Basher 12 hours, 24 minutes ago
    I think, Jan Vertonghen is likely Javi Martinez!!! Any 1 of them will b ok.forget greedy silva!!

  13. Anonymous17.6.12

    Posted by Anonymous 10 hours, 36 minutes ago
    if you want you cant buy silva

    Posted by ola 10 hours, 26 minutes ago
    they should forget about silve he's not the best central defender in the world and you can see good c.defenders in Euro 2012...barca should go for hummels or badsturber ....Fiscal barca!!!!

    Posted by forza milan 8 hours, 44 minutes ago
    Thiago Silva is unique and worth every cent of what has been disclosed in the press thus far.
    Thiago Silva has said that every footballer dreams of playing for Barcelona, so I believe the author was mistaken when he claimed that Thiago "has not even hinted his desire to come to Barcelona".
    I also think that asking, "Who does this guy think he is?" is in bad taste. He is humble and good-natured by all accounts, and whatever he is claimed to be worth is certainly a product of his agent and the market (as evidenced by the PSG bid), just like any other player. I've not heard him ever claim to be worth any given amount.
    I do agree that paying such a large sum for any player at this time is ill-advised. Also, I wouldn't be surprised if this whole ordeal with PSG was scripted in such a way as to satiate Silvio Burlesconi's desire to be seen as a god among men, swooping in at "the last minute" to save Milan yet again with his great wisdom and generous heart.

    Posted by Damoobarca 5 hours, 16 minutes ago
    Not must we buy central defender bcos we av alot of utility player who are capable of playin defence. Lets promote d our youth team players and train dem for future. As at now puyol, masherano, segio muniesta and fontas wil manage d central back

  14. Anonymous17.6.12

    Posted by Tiboopo 5 hours, 6 minutes ago
    I love the way you seem to suggest that Javi Martinez will definitely be tempted to leave for Barcelona. That HE could force a cheaper way if Barcelona goes all the way out.

    Posted by JOSEPH .A. PAUL. 2 hours, 38 minutes ago
    Thiago silva should not be sign just too expensive,considering d economy recession.Javi Martinz should be prefer choice going by is season form.He is good offensively&also good defensively.He correctly hinted that barcelona is the best in the history of football,if a player like this is given an offer to come join the best club in history i think he will not reject it.

  15. Anonymous17.6.12

    Posted by aliyu liman 12 hours, 5 minutes ago
    barca need 2 spend money build up there defence people like bale,alba,mexes and luiz.also i wuld like 2 see a stong substitute people like bendtner,ben arfa modric nd david silva.barca must spend or else madrid,ac milan nd chelsea wil giv us a big headache act fast.spend nd u get result as man city did.

    Posted by Anod80 11 hours, 5 minutes ago
    Barcelona should just forget about tiago silva, let us go for martinez and a tall and sharp striker for our plan B. Sandro rosell and the board should please release enough money to get a better players

  16. Mr Brown17.6.12

    If barca can secure the service of Gareth bale, jordi alba, and any of the strong and talented centre back defender. Am sure no team will ever compete with barca team. Am very sure of that. Pls let barca do spend to make the fans & the team proud and happy.

  17. Anonymous17.6.12

    It's not all about spending, but putting your money on something that will yield result at the end of the day.. For me, buying Thiago Silva ( with an outrageous price tag ) Isn't the best option, little money should also go out in areas where Barca are lacking. Javi Martinez sounds like a good option, he plays in the spanish league, and equally in the national team. Barca needs a tall defender, knowing fully well how we suffered last season from set-pieces. Jordi Alba is equally a good addition too.

  18. Anonymous17.6.12

    Posted by Adegunomokeji 8 hours, 54 minutes ago
    I agree with d options,thiago silva might go to milan if he cares 50M€ for a defnder iz 3much.lets add alba+javi martinez to d curent squad coz of wot dey got in dem.forzabarca

  19. Anonymous17.6.12

    Posted by Ahmed ayobami 8 hours, 24 minutes ago
    I surely believe that barca needs a strong & experience central defence, bcus against chelsea, barca lack defence which eleminate them from the champions league. I suggest a defender lik thiago silva!.

  20. Anonymous17.6.12

    Posted by Zach 8 hours, 19 minutes ago
    Daniel Agger would fit into Barcelona perfectly...

    Posted by Jatto usman etudaiye 7 hours, 37 minutes ago
    Barca need 4 players like david luiz, alba, bale, and falcao i think these are the 4 player dat culd make us proud. Consider their style am plead with rosell and zubi that they should sign this players and forget t'silva let me also remind u peple dat we need right back and carceres is need in dat position coz alves is tired

    Posted by jevf 7 hours, 5 minutes ago
    4 CB barca need Javi martinez ,David luiz r mat hummels and plz don't write off pique 1 bad season don't make u a bad defender. Barca 4 life

  21. Anonymous17.6.12

    Posted by Mboi Samjustice 6 hours, 36 minutes ago
    2 all barca fans, i say helo. Plz talkin abt a tall ataka rememba no tal ataka ve eva make wave at barca, Ibra came n failed. We lost d chelsea game due 2 inexperienz, messi Alexis n fabregas al missed dia chances n we lacked vila's angle shot too.

  22. Anonymous18.6.12

    I don't think Hummels would be possible as he just signed a 5-year contract with BVB and he did say he won't leave, but Botia and Iñigo Martinez both seem reasonable choices.

  23. Anonymous18.6.12

    Posted by Mr Smooth 1 day ago
    Barca needs a Left back, but mainly a CB who is fast when we get counter-attacked..we need a second Pique when we expect to get counter attacked, and when it comes to attack, if we could buy a sure bet striker like Falcao, we would have two great strikers(Falcao,Villa) and Messi plus the average Sanchez! that would be alot of depth!!! for the defense: Javi Martinez/Subotic and Alba(28m + 12m) then for attack: Radamel Falcao or Huntelaar(50m/20m).Barca doesn't need a tall striker! it needs a great finisher!

    Posted by Moose 16 hours, 53 minutes ago
    I think barcelona should get mats hummels (google it).
    He is strong defendeer but plays amazing passes he is barcelonas kind of defender (Thumbs up if you agree!)

    Posted by God 12 hours, 14 minutes ago
    Barcelona should try to buy Phil jones, he's a tall defender with very good promising, one for the future. Jordi alba is also a good addition to the team. Right now Barcelona doesn't need to even buy Gareth bale, they have the likes of issaac Cuenca , Christian tello, buy buy another winger? Those two wingers have showed very good potential this season, scoring a couple of vital goals for barcelona.

  24. Anonymous18.6.12

    Posted by Barcelona Fans Association Nigeria (BFAN) 11 hours, 35 minutes ago
    We quite agree that T.Silva is 1 of the very best in CB position, but greed on the part of Milan, the player himself and his manager/agent is monumental.
    Having said that, we really don't understand what the Rosell administration is doing concerning transfers. Positions for reinforcement have been identified long ago. Asides Jordi Alba, we DON'T see any seriousness to snap up any CB, since T.Silva deal is now not possible.
    For those agitating for a striker, if anything going by what our new coach Tito has said, that aint happening anytime soon (in as much that we'd really love to see Radamel Falcao in our team). As for the other CB options, we should not compound our problems by mentioning too many names and confusing people. Vermaleen is tied to long contract with Arsenal.
    Hummels recent long term renewal rules him out too.
    David Luiz would never be allowed to leave Chelsea, he also has a long term contract.
    Which leaves us with Dede & Vertonghen. We better move FAST!
    Visca Barca!!!

  25. Anonymous18.6.12

    Posted by Reza-Barca 7 hours, 59 minutes ago
    Hi.I think it's better to buy a low paid and qualified defender like Subotic

    Posted by Allaru 5 hours, 6 minutes ago
    Javi martinez wil be gud option 4 barca bcos he already understand hw barca style of play is cos bilbao play just lyk baca.

    Posted by Sean Nettleton 4 hours, 32 minutes ago
    Thaigo Silva one of best centre backs in world, great singing if they get him.

    Posted by guy 1 hour, 51 minutes ago
    hey... realy good and accurret article but i will like 2 c matt hammels from Borussia Dortmund.
    he is strong and has a good passing abilety.
    beside that after rednapp is gone barca should inquire the option of gareth bale. he is the best in the world for the posetion of left back and he is an option that should be check again.
    beside that u need a goal scorer. someone cheap because u dont have enough guys who can play as a centrel scorer

  26. Thiago Silva would be a great signing IF we could get him at the right price. He would also have to accept his place in Barcelona's pay structure. I completely agree that we should not sign him at a ridiculous price like 50 million.

  27. Riaz Rahman19.6.12

    we need to sign hummels, forget about silva and forget about converting javi martinez into a CB. 30 million for a 23 year old who had a great season for borrusia dortmund and is having a good euros so far, he needs to be the priority signing

  28. i realy prefer Jan
    Vertonghen,his a strong man wit a great football experience, so let d board go 4 him atlease

  29. i hope that money is too much for Thiago Silva,a big team like fc barcelona dont even need to spend such a huge money 4 a single player just like dat, so i think we should think about another player lol

  30. Leonardo the BLESSED8.7.12

    I was very impressed with Botia last season..Dude was on point in every game i watched him play...Also have been hearing great things of Ogbonna from Torino he's young strong and FAST...instead of spending alot on falcao or RVP I would advise getting Welliton from Spartak Moscow..His playiing style resembles the great Eto'o..We need to get back to the killer trident of 2009 a.s.a.p. Play messi back on the right to open up spaces for the striker..all I can say is remember the henry eto'o messi combo that gave us 5,6,7 or 8 goals a game then the defensive short comings will not be such a problem. Visca Yehova Visca Barca Visca Aruba


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