The squad of FC Barcelona has changed significantly in the last few seasons, as younger players are taking on a more pronounced role in the team. This is also the case with the left-back position, where Alejandro Balde has established himself as the clear starter.
Before Balde, Jordi Alba was the automatic starter on the left-back position for the club for a decade. Having joined Barcelona from Valencia in 2012, the pacy fullback has been a part of the club’s squad through a significant part of its recent history, during which the club also won a treble, while remaining the serial La Liga champions.
However, with age catching up with him, Alba has lost some of these most valuable characteristics, and the rise of Balde has further confirmed Alba’s demotion in the starting eleven. His position in the squad has deteriorated further with the arrival of Marcos Alonso, who has now pushed Alba to the third option at left-back for Xavi.
The contract renewals offered to Balde and Alonso are a further indication from the club that the Blaugranes will be relying more on these two younger options, than on Alba. Still, SPORT reports that Alba is intent on fulfilling the contract he has with Barcelona.
However, the economic situation at the club, especially in regard to wages, makes it difficult for Barcelona to retain 3 players on a single position, and the club is looking to give Alba a letter of freedom to join any other club as per the reports from SPORT.
Meanwhile, Alba is keeping himself in a good physical condition to keep fighting for a position in the squad. If he can impress FC Barcelona sufficiently, the club might consider even slightly extending his contract, but this extension will come at the price of a significant wage reduction or wage deferrals.