Barcelona find a hardened veteran in teenage pearl – report


BARCELONA, SPAIN - MARCH 08: Vedat Muriqi of RCD Mallorca holds the ball whilst under pressure from Pau Cubarsi of FC Barcelona during the LaLiga EA Sports match between FC Barcelona and RCD Mallorca at Estadi Olimpic Lluis Companys on March 08, 2024 in Barcelona, Spain.BARCELONA, SPAIN - MARCH 08: Vedat Muriqi of RCD Mallorca holds the ball whilst under pressure from Pau Cubarsi of FC Barcelona during the LaLiga EA Sports match between FC Barcelona and RCD Mallorca at Estadi Olimpic Lluis Companys on March 08, 2024 in Barcelona, Spain.
Photo by Alex Caparros/Getty Images

After a long and valiant battle, Barcelona emerged victorious against Mallorca. The game itself was far from a pretty display of football, but it got the job done for La Blaugrana. Ultimately, all three points went to Barcelona, and that is exactly what Xavi’s team needed.

However, the dependence of the result ultimately boiled down to the monumental efforts of certain individuals. While it is understandable that most of the credit will go towards Lamine Yamal and the 16-year-old’s immaculate strike that won Barcelona all three points, there was another young pearl who deserves recognition.

Playing all the way over at the other end of the field, another Barcelona player was arguably just as crucial if not more than his 16-year-old teammate in attack. Even as Mundo Deportivo has highlighted, a large contribution towards the result also came through the efforts of Pau Cubarsi.

Aged just 17 himself, Cubarsi continues to be seen as just a talented wonderkid from the outside. However, as he continues to play more and more games at a level that no player his age should be able to produce on a regular basis, it becomes clear that the Spaniard’s maturity is well beyond his years.

In a game where two strikers from Mallorca, namely Cyle Larin and Vedat Muriqi, depended a lot on their physical superiority to outmuscle Barcelona, Cubarsi was there to keep both of them at bay. At various points in the game, the La Masia product intervened at crucial moments to shut out Mallorca’s advances.

Even despite his difference in age with them, Cubarsi was relentless. At no point did he let his attackers breathe in peace and ensure that they were constantly bugged. His efforts were vital in guaranteeing a clean sheet for Barcelona, and minimizing any and all threats that made their way to Marc-Andre Ter Stegen.

A real gem in the making, very few people can deny Cubarsi’s talents. Barcelona rarely manage to produce homegrown defenders of such quality, but they have truly hit the jackpot with Pau Cubarsi. As it stands, the Catalan giants will want to continue this partnership with him for years to come.

Raafay Humayun
Raafay Humayun
Raafay Humayun is a life-long fan of FC Barcelona and an avid enjoyer of all things Blaugrana. Having fallen in love with the club for the way they defined football for him, he now spends his time watching games, analyzing the happenings in them, and digesting any and everything related to his beloved Catalan club. He also writes as an author for Barca News Network hoping to deliver the latest updates to his fellow ‘culés’.

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