As club football comes to a halt in light of the FIFA World Cup 2022 starting in November, specific clubs may be looking to play in friendly games during the duration of the national tournament to keep the players that haven’t been called up in appropriate fitness.
As per recent reports from RAC1, FC Barcelona are already discussing the possibility of arranging a friendly match with Arsenal at Emirates Stadium.
Top of the table in England, Arsenal have been flying high under Spanish manager Mikel Arteta, and are one of the most entertaining and tactically sound teams in Europe as it stands. Moreover, if Barcelona progresses through the UEFA Europa League, Arsenal are a likely opponent they may face in the tournament at a later stage.
An opponent of Arsenal’s caliber will indefinitely prove to be a great test as well as a warm-up for the Catalans before the club season resumes, as it will give Xavi ample time and room for experimentation with tactics. It also allows players that haven’t been used that frequently this season to get some game time under their belt and possibly manage to impress the manager in the process.
Other than that, there have been rumors and reports that suggest that Barcelona may be looking at Mikel Arteta as a potential heir to Xavi, despite the fact that the latter has the full backing of the board as it stands and has done a phenomenal job in the league campaign thus far.
Regardless, it allows a closer look at the Spaniard in charge of Arsenal and how exactly he fares when pitted against the current Barcelona manager Xavi. Neither will likely use their stronger squads and may opt to deploy players less frequently called upon.