Barcelona will miss Pedro if departure to Manchester United confirmed

Barcelona will miss Pedro if departure to Manchester United confirmed

Barcelona has reportedly closed a deal with Manchester United to transfer Pedro for a price in the region of €32 million. With a move to Old Trafford seemingly imminent, it is time to look back on Pedro's trophy-laden period at the Camp Nou.

Departing players aren't always missed, especially when it is the player himself who has expressed a desire to leave. Many will feel the time is right to cash in on the 28 year-old who has become more of a backup option than a regular starter in recent times. There will be other Barcelona fans of course who feel a player of Pedro's quality will be needed over the course of a long season.

Whichever way supporters feel about his likely exit, it is safe to assume that Pedro will be one of the guys who will be missed and wished all the best in his new challenge. 

Pedro arrived at the Camp Nou back in 2004 after moving from San Isidro of the Canary Islands to join Barcelona's youth team. After successful stints in the B and C teams, coach Frank Rijkaard handed the Spaniard his debut in January 2008 when he came on as a substitute against Real Murcia. The forward then found regular playing time tough to come by in the following season under Pep Guardiola with the likes of Thierry Henry and Samuel Eto'o starting ahead of him in a glorious treble-winning team.

The following season, however, proved to be a breakthrough one for Pedro and became a regular sight in the first team netting 23 goals in a fantastic season. By the time, the 2010-11 season came around Pedro was a permanent fixture in the side playing in a new-look front three alongside Lionel Messi and David Villa.

The trio contemplated each other superbly playing in a team that many feel reached a level of football perfection not seen before. Pedro's fine season culminated in scoring the first goal of the Champions League final at Wembley in which Barca went on to win 3-1 against Manchester United.

Barcelona will miss Pedro if departure to Manchester United confirmed

The Spanish international was proving to be a valuable foil for Villa and Messi in particular. With Messi usually attracting the majority of attention from opposing players, Pedro was providing an outlet out wide which stretched defences while Barca's tiki-taka style was being worked in more central areas. Pedro used his pace and excellent spatial awareness to create and score goals in abundance for the team. In terms of individual achievement, that glorious season probably proved to be the peak of the forward's time at Barca so far.

Over the next three seasons, Pedro still made a significant contribution to the side albeit with more appearances from the bench. The goalscoring numbers may have dropped but measured against his number of minutes on the pitch, the ratios dropped only marginally. 

There isn't a player in the world who would have found it easy to claim a starting spot among the forwards last season. Pedro started the season in a front three with Messi and Neymar, but as soon as €81 million signing Luis Suarez was to return from a four-match ban the writing was on the wall for the 28-year-old Spain international. The trident of Suarez, Messi and Neymar proved to be sensational with their sparkling form proving it nearly impossible for Luis Enrique to rest any of them.

Pedro has seen off some big names in his Barca career such as Zlatan Ibrahimovic and Alexis Sanchez for example. The likes of Ibrahimovic may well have more natural talent than Pedro, but the Spaniard has the team ethic and mentality to fit into the unique Barca playing style.

Barcelona will miss Pedro if departure to Manchester United confirmed

Another attribute Pedro brings to a squad is a humble personality which has made him a popular figure with the managers he has played under. Despite being named a substitute on a frequent basis, Pedro has rarely made a fuss or complained at not getting more playing time. He is one of those players that a coach loves to have around the dressing room.

Pedro evidently feels that at this stage of his career he wants to play more football and last season questioned his future at the club. The forward was keen to stress that he was determined to produce his best efforts when called upon, though.

You can be sure that if his departure does go through, he will be someone who is missed by the majority of Barca fans worldwide. 

A forward of immense quality, scorer of 98 Barca goals while winning 18 major trophies along the way, who always gave his all for the club and did it in a dignified and professional manner. Players such as Pedro are becoming an increasing rarity in the modern football world. 

Whatever the future may hold: Mucha suerte, Pedro!

Published by Aaron Attwood, columnist at Barcablog. Follow him on Twitter @ajattwood

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