Ranking the Barcelona Players Whose Transfer Values Have Moved Most in 2017

Karl Matchett@@karlmatchettFeatured ColumnistMarch 14, 2017

Ranking the Barcelona Players Whose Transfer Values Have Moved Most in 2017

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    Manuel Queimadelos Alonso/Getty Images

    Barcelona's up-and-down season has continued in recent weeks, with the incredible comeback in Europe against Paris Saint-Germain being followed up by a disappointing loss to Deportivo La Coruna in La Liga.

    The form of the team in 2016/17 has been mirrored by several players; some have also been suffering dips in performance levels, while others star on a regular basis and provide hope that the campaign could yet end with silverware.

    Here we take a look at the 10 players whose values in the transfer market may have changed the most since the start of the season: five up and five down, based on their importance to the team and displays this campaign so far.

Biggest Faller: 5. Paco Alcacer (-£7 Million)

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    Juan Manuel Serrano Arce/Getty Images

    Estimated current value: £18 million

    Estimated difference: £7 million

    Paco Alcacer joined Barcelona in the summer as an alternative striking option for when Luis Suarez was unavailable, misfiring or in need of a rest, but it really hasn't happened for the former Valencia man.

    Poor performances, a lack of sharpness and general mistrust in him from his manager have all hampered Alacacer's debut campaign in Catalunya, and he has featured in fewer than 500 La Liga minutes thus far as a result.

    It can't all be pinned on Suarez's excellence, either, with Alcacer missing a handful of more-than-presentable chances early on.

    He'd still fetch a fair chunk as a Spain international forward but certainly nowhere near the £25 million Barca paid for him less than a year ago.

Biggest Faller: 4. Arda Turan (-£10 Million)

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    Manuel Queimadelos Alonso/Getty Images

    Estimated current value: £15 million

    Estimated difference: £10 million

    Arda Turan took time to adjust to life at Barcelona after being ineligible for the first six months of his debut season due to the club's transfer ban, and that has translated into a stop-start time at the Camp Nou into 2016/17.

    The Turkey international enjoyed a fine run early in the year on the left side of the attack, but it was short-lived, and the fact he's become a versatile, fit-where-required option for Luis Enrique only highlights the fact that he's a decent but not elite part of their squad.

    Turan could still command a reasonable fee in the transfer market if the club opted to offload him, but at 30 years old and two years on from his last regular run in the side, he's simply not a huge-value individual any longer.

    A single start in the Champions League this year showcases how he only plays when needed, not on merit, even though he has hit double figures in goals.

Biggest Faller: 3. Sergio Busquets (-£10 Million)

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    Gonzalo Arroyo Moreno/Getty Images

    Estimated current value: £70 million

    Estimated difference: £10 million

    The most surprising name on the list, but it far from signifies that Sergio Busquets is off the top table in world football—it's simply an indication that '16/17 hasn't seen anywhere near his best levels on a regular basis.

    Barcelona's holding midfielder has been symptomatic of the team's overall reduced output from midfield this term, in both offensive and defensive situations, with more of an emphasis having been placed instead on the front three once again.

    Busquets has certainly had a few big performances, but in general he has been bypassed rather too easily, and his usually incisive passing hasn't been on show with enough frequency.

    Down in value but still higher-rated, and ranked, than most players in world football.

Biggest Faller: 2. Ivan Rakitic (-£15 Million)

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    Juan Manuel Serrano Arce/Getty Images

    Estimated current value: £25 million

    Estimated difference: £15 million

    Ivan Rakitic might have just signed a new contract with Barcelona, but there's no doubting his value has dropped this year and is nowhere near the €125 million buyout clause inserted into his new deal.

    The Croatian was a guaranteed name on the teamsheet last term alongside Andres Iniesta in midfield but is only eighth in the squad this term for Liga minutes played (per WhoScored).

    Rakitic has been left out of big games at times, and the likes of Rafinha and Denis Suarez have at times been preferred, with the former in particular shining this term. Rakitic still has a lot to offer, and none of the younger talents have yet reached the heights that Barca's No. 4 can, but this has definitely been a downward trend of a season for him.

Biggest Faller: 1. Andre Gomes (-£26 Million)

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    Estimated current value: £20 million

    Estimated difference: £26 million

    An absolute nightmare of a debut season at Barcelona for Andre Gomes, who not only looks off the pace in the team's midfield but also appears lacking in the confidence or conviction to turn things around. He has his set way of playing, and if it doesn't work, that's the extent of his effort.

    If Barca were to cut their losses and offload him this summer, they'd be extremely lucky to get back half of what the total figure payable to Los Che might be: a whopping £46 million including add-ons.

    Of course, more than one player has bounced back from a difficult first season to impress afterward, but Gomes has a lot of work to do to remove the flop sign from around his neck.

Biggest Riser: =5. Rafinha and Lucas Digne (+£5 Million)

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    Alex Caparros/Getty Images

    Estimated current value: Rafinha £15 million, Digne £20 million

    Estimated difference: £5 million

    On the plus side, Barcelona also have players whose campaigns have been thus far favourable, including a new signing or two.

    Lucas Digne is one such face, impressing whenever given the chance at left-back even though he has tremendous competition in the form of Jordi Alba. Digne has been less injury prone, more assertive with his defensive work and has shown quality going forward, too.

    His value is up, slightly, from the £14 million he cost.

    Meanwhile, Rafinha has finally put ongoing injury problems behind him to show consistently why he has long been a highly rated player, one who can buck the trend of La Masia graduates not quite going on to establish themselves in Barca's first team.

    Rafinha is in the side on merit, he affects play in the final third, and his value will only continue to rise with such performances.

Biggest Riser: 4. Denis Suarez (+£7 Million)

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    fotopress/Getty Images

    Estimated current value: £10 million

    Estimated difference: £7 million

    Benefiting from both wearing the Barca shirt and from the low buy-back fee they had available on him, Denis Suarez hasn't yet excelled on a regular basis but has given tantalising glimpses of the player he could become.

    While a creative wide player at Villarreal, Denis has largely been used as a central No. 8 for Barcelona. It can mean he struggles to assert himself given the quality of other players in the middle, but at just 23 years old, he still has time on his side for now—he's the same age as Andre Gomes but has impressed more often and cost far less.

    Just £3 million to bring home, Denis would go for treble that amount simply because he's a Barcelona squad player.

Biggest Riser: 3. Samuel Umtiti (+£19 Million)

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    VI-Images/Getty Images

    Estimated current value: £40 million

    Estimated difference: £19 million

    Slowly, a cult figure is growing at Barcelona, and his name is Samuel Umtiti.

    The French centre-back has been monstrous at times, making huge blocks and last-ditch tackles, while also doing the quieter side of the game—covering behind his full-back, passing into midfield, winning aerial balls—with imperious efficiency.

    Another 23-year-old, Umtiti is showing he is the perfect signing to take over from Javier Mascherano in the long term as Gerard Pique's defensive partner, and there's no question that in a single season Barca could double their £21 million investment if another team were determined to make Umtiti their rock in defence.

    Chances of that happening: extremely slim. He looks a Barcelona icon in the making.

Biggest Riser: 2. Marc-Andre Ter Stegen (+£20 Million)

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    MIGUEL RIOPA/Getty Images

    Estimated current value: £50 million

    Estimated difference: £20 million

    Claudio Bravo departed Barcelona for Manchester City in the summer for around £16 million, so it's safe to assume the Spanish club valued Marc-Andre ter Stegen—a Champions League winner, a younger talent, their No. 1-in-waiting—at considerably higher than that figure.

    This term he has ranged between very impressive and utterly astonishing with his form, keeping Barca in games when the team performance level has been low and showcasing his own growing maturity and consistency.

    He's a goalkeeper, so the odd mistake has to be taken into account as an occupational hazard, but for overall form, there are not too many others in European football who have been as steadfastly marvellous as the German has been in '16/17.

Biggest Riser: 1. Neymar (+£30 Million)

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    Michael Regan/Getty Images

    Estimated current value: £180 million

    Estimated difference: £30 million

    It's a funny thing in football: The biggest names who are rated as the highest-value talents can suddenly skyrocket to even more stratospheric price tags with a few big-game performances.

    That's absolutely the case with Neymar, already one of the world's most sought-after players before this year, who has been Barca's stellar performer at times, even ahead of Lionel Messi and Luis Suarez.

    Last year he was linked with a move to Paris Saint-Germain for up to €190 million—that was around £140-£150 million at the time—per ESPN Brazil (h/t Barca Blaugranes).

    But bring up the match-winning displays, such as his against PSG in the Champions League, and Neymar must be comfortably pushing the £200m barrier now, further limiting the number of teams who could eventually make a move for him.

    If Neymar does move on, it's going to be a world-record fee, that much is certain.


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