I apologise in advance to all Barcelona fans, because what you’re about to read is going to hurt a little. Or a lot. Probably a lot.
The Barcelona team of 2020 is struggling. Beaten to the La Liga title by rivals Real Madrid, finishing five points behind Zidane’s men. Just weeks after that they were subject to one of the most humiliating nights in the club’s history, suffering an 8-2 defeat at the hands of a relentless Bayern Munich side.
Barcelona’s problems are much greater than that. There is increasing backroom unrest. They’ve never truly replaced Guardiola. And on the pitch, their starting eleven has an average age of just under 30.
They’re getting old. Messi is 33, Suarez is 33, Pique is 33, Rakitic is 32 and Busquets is 32. The players that they have relied on for so many years are not the players they once were. Time has proven to be a great enemy of Barcelona.
What next for one of the world’s most successful clubs?
It’s time to prepare for a new era. The post-Messi era. And they should do it the Barca way, by looking at their fabled La Masia academy for the next wave of superstars.
In 2012, Barcelona fielded an all-homegrown eleven for the first time in history against Levante. The score? 4-0 Barcelona. The team? Get ready for this.
The La Masia XI: Victor Valdes, Martin Montoya, Carles Puyol, Gerard Pique, Jordi Alba, Xavi, Sergio Busquets, Andres Iniesta, Pedro, Lionel Messi and Cesc Fabregas.
Some team that.
So it got me thinking of a new Football Manager 20 challenge. Out with the old and in with the new.
Introducing, the ‘Make Barcelona Great Again’ Football manager 20 challenge.
- Win La Liga and the Champions League in the same season fielding only products of Barcelona’s youth system.
- Your game squad every game week can only consistent of Barcelona-bred players.
- You cannot sign players for your under 18s and promote them.
- You can however sign players from other clubs as long as they were graduates of La Masia.
- You can use existing players at the club who were brought from the academy.
Do you have what it takes to make Barcelona great again?
If you don’t fancy that. How about The Ross County Challenge?