Carles Alena Says 'There Is No Explanation for Me Being Dropped' at Barcelona

Rory Marsden@@roomarsdenFeatured ColumnistSeptember 11, 2019

BILBAO, SPAIN - AUGUST 16: Carles Alena of FC Barcelona during the La Liga Santander  match between Athletic de Bilbao v FC Barcelona at the Estadio San Mames on August 16, 2019 in Bilbao Spain (Photo by David S. Bustamante/Soccrates/Getty Images)
Soccrates Images/Getty Images

Carles Alena has said he is at a loss to explain why he has not been included in the Barcelona squad since the opening match of the 2019-20 La Liga season.  

Alena, 21, started in Barca's opening game of the campaign against Athletic Bilbao, where they lost 1-0, but he was substituted at half-time by manager Ernesto Valverde.

The Spanish midfielder has since been left out of the squad completely for the 5-2 win over Real Betis and 2-2 draw with Osasuna.

Speaking while on international duty with Spain's under-21 side, Alena said he has not been told why he has been omitted, per RAC1 (h/t Marca):

"There is no explanation for me being dropped after the game in Bilbao. No player likes being left out of the squad. It's a decision taken by the coach. Of course it affects the player."

He added that he believes he "can turn the situation around" and is "determined to succeed at Barcelona."

Alena is a graduate of Barca's prestigious La Masia academy and made his senior debut for the club in 2016.

He made his first start in La Liga last term and eventually finished the campaign with 17 appearances in the Spanish top flight, 11 of them from the bench.

A native of Catalonia, it is no surprise Alena has drawn comparisons to the likes of Xavi:

It has been some time since an academy graduate made the step up to become a first-team regular at the Camp Nou.

Lionel Messi and Gerard Pique both came through La Masia and are club legends, but they are members of a previous golden generation of academy players.

Barca fans would likely be happy to see Alena become a regular in the first team given his local roots, and that could play a role in when Valverde opts to put him back in the squad. 

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