Matt has yet to fill out a bio.
I don't even think Cerna was a complete expert on La Masia ;) Samper definitely has quality, I don't know that he's the best prospect though. As for Dongou, I think that Eto'o 2.0 tag is not such a good thing. For various reasons he's struggled and right now he's being overrated by many (normally those that aren't watching him much!). I'm not sure I see the situation changing and so his future doesn't look as rosy as it once did.
Personally I think those most likely to make the 1st team are Bagnack and Suarez. I think this gen has plenty of talent, but not many Barca-level players. For me the golden gen was Bojan through to Deulofeu/Rafinha... We produced a lot of players in a short space of time all good enough for the 1st team, the rest is luck, fitness etc etc.
Should we keep loaning... I don't know if I discussed loans with you before, but historically the percentage of players coming back the last 10 years is almost 0%... no player has really returned and succeeded. That being said, Raf and Deulo are very very talented.
I think it needs to be looked at on a case-by-case basis, but we need to be very wary of loaning, since the FCB system is unique. Often its better just to stay and train.
Hey man. An article here for you :) And tomorrow or Friday there will be one up on Barca B's top talents :).
Sigh. This transfer window was truly terrible. What a horrible mistake.
Thanks for the kind words. Michael Cerna and I are actually really close friends. I miss writing with him.
I can't really tell you whether he's the right man yet. Would many have said Pep was the right man before he did anything? I know very little about him really. I've only gotten info on him from some very trustworthy sources of mine. All things said about him are very positive. He's obsessive and has great attention to detail- much like Pep. His philosophies align well.
Only time will really tell. In the unfortunate situation we were in though... There wasn't really a 'perfect choice'. Our hand was forced into making the move.
What I can say is that for Barca, the experience of the coach matters less than having a clear idea and the will to carry it through. I think he has that. Many of our best managers have come with little experience but plenty of ideas, belief and determination.
Btw, what did I say about Roberto? :) Alexis and Bartra also played very well.
Anyway man, I'm off to Europe at the end of this week, so you won't see much from me for a while. But next time you do hear from me, I'll be writing from Barcelona :).
Matt, thought I'd replied to you. Starting XI... hmmm. Let's wait and see who is fit and all that jazz. Will be very interesting, particularly given the new boss.
Exciting times really. Thanks for the comments. Keep a close eye on Roberto, Bartra and Alexis in preseason. Key moments for them here.
Yeah, I mean. The whole point was to say, why wear something that goes against what you stand for? It makes no sense. I guess its just people trying to sound smart by taking things literally.
Thanks for the backup on the Cisse article :)
Unfortunately Confeds Cup is at a pretty inconvenient time for me and I've hardly watched any.
From highlights and all reports though, very encouraged by Neymar's performances, but its nothing I didn't really know already. Most of the naysayers just didn't know what they were dealing with.
With his technique and touch there is no reason why he can't adapt at Barca.
What would be your ideal, but realistic, signings/sales for the rest of the summer Matt?
And I haven't forgotten the promise of youth articles! I've just been very busy, but finished studies for a period now...