Barcelona’s new left-back has all chances to displace Alba


Barcelona had a well reported on Alonso since April. But a final move for the player only materialized on the deadline day of the summer transfer window. Now that Alonso is finally in FC Barcelona, there is much to ponder. While his offensive capabilities are none to question, his defensive side is a downside to his game.

Previously under Tuchel in Chelsea, he was deployed in the right wing-back position in a back three. With cover behind him, Alonso was able to play with his strength.  In Barcelona, he would be deployed in a back four. This would mean that the Spaniard would have to up his defensive game when tracking back.

Barcelona’s Marcus Alonso draws applause from his youth coach

Alonso was brought in to offer competition to Jordi Alba. In a recent interview, Sport interviewed Alejandro Menendez, one of his youth coaches. Menendez was praised for Alonso’s development as a player while also pointing out his shortcomings in defence.

“He was already a full-back with a great vocation for the offensive side of things, very vertical, a great left foot, very confident in himself.”

“Very daring, but he did not have much energy in defence. He struggled to get back, to adapt his way of defending to the defensive line. He struggled while burning his energy defending one-on-one. The managers put a lot of work into that.”

Menendez also claimed that Alonso would displace Alaba from the left-back position.

“I understand it as Xavi has not only thought of having an internal competition between Marcos and Jordi, that they fight for that position, but that Marcos is a player that can leave Jordi Alba in the shade.”

However, it would not be Alba that Alonso has to compete with. Xavi has put his faith in 18-year-old Alejandro Balde for the starting position. If Alonso wants to be a permanent start, he would have to compete with young Balde and prove he is worthy.

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