Why Barcelona must sign Manchester City ace Eric Garcia in January
Born in Barcelona, Garcia spent nine years between 2008 and 2017 at La Masia. He then moved across the continent to join Manchester City. The highly-rated teenager featured thrice in the Citizens’ triumphant 2018-19 EFL Cup campaign. But he had to wait until the following season to make his Premier League debut.
The 19-year-old enjoyed an impressive breakthrough season in the top-flight last term, clocking up 791 minutes of league football across 8 starts and 5 substitute appearances (source – Transfermarkt). Besides that, he also started once in the Champions League and on five other occasions in the domestic cup competitions last season.
This season he has been given sparse games with just 4 appearances in all competitions. Garcia, already representing his nation at U-19 and U-21 levels, made his senior bow in September. He has made 4 appearances since then.
Signing Garcia is a compulsion now for Barcelona
Barcelona could not meet Manchester City’s demands of €10million up-front fee. The club had a restricted budget and could not afford to spend on Garcia, hence they opted to wait.
Nonetheless, the Catalans could be forced into signing him in January itself with Pique ruled out until April. The club are currently down to bare bones in central defence with just Clement Lenglet as the only fit centre-back. They have had to call on the likes of Ronald Araujo and Oscar Mingueza from the ‘B’ side to shore up the defence.
They could be forced to sell players like Junior Firpo and Martin Brathwaite in January to fund a move for Garcia. With games coming thick and fast, Barcelona will need more personnel in defence to tackle the issue.
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Garcia’s age means that he will be a very good long-term as well as short-term asset for the club. It’s not easy to break into a team under Guardiola as a youngster. That tells a lot about Garcia’s qualities. He would no doubt be a great addition to Barca’s backline for years to come.