New Barcelona player shares a peculiar chronology with former club winger and Real Madrid keeper


Barcelona forward Joao Felix
Photo by Juan Manuel Serrano Arce/Getty Images

FC Barcelona made a number of changes to their squad in the last transfer window. While the club let go of a number of players and incorporated several more players in the summer, there are two players associated with Barcelona who share an interesting role in their CV.

One of these players is Joao Felix, who joined Barcelona on loan from Atletico Madrid on the last day of the summer transfer window. The other is Ousmane Dembele, who left the club to join PSG this summer.

As SPORT has noted, both these players, along with Kepa Arrizabalaga, who is on loan at Real Madrid, share one thing in common. All these players have seen themselves replace another important player more than once in their careers.

Felix and Griezmann

Joao Felix rose to prominence with Benfica, after which he moved to Atletico Madrid. His move to Atletico came in the same window in which Antoine Griezmann left the Madrid club to join Barcelona, in, 2019. Thus, Felix was the direct replacement for Griezmann at Atletico.

Neither of these two moves panned out really well, as Joao Felix struggled for form in Atletico and Griezmann did the same at Barcelona. Griezmann returned to Atletico on loan in 2021, and then joined the club permanently, while Felix has come the other way after a loan stint at Chelsea.

Dembele and Neymar

Barcelona saw Neymar Jr. leave the club in the summer of 2017, as PSG paid €222 million for the Brazilian superstar. Barcelona used this money to replace Neymar with Dembele, who cost the Catalans €135 million.

However, neither of these two players were able to justify the prices paid for them. As a result, Neymar left PSG for Saudi Arabia, and once again, the player to replace him was Ousmane Dembele, as he joined PSG from Barcelona for €50 million.

Kepa and Courtois

Lastly, Kepa was Chelsea’s replacement for Thibaut Courtois, when the Belgian left the Premier League club to join Real Madrid. Courtois has been a mainstay at Real Madrid for the last few seasons and is their starting goalkeeper, but he suffered an injury that will keep him out of action for the most part of this season.

And once again, Real Madrid replace the injured Courtois with Kepa, as Chelsea had done previously. While Courtois will be back in the starting lineup once he is back from injury, it will still take him some time, and for that time, Kepa will replace him in the Madrid goal.

Ahmad Sarmad Ansari
Ahmad Sarmad Ansari
Ahmad Sarmad Ansari has been covering Spanish football as a writer for Barca News Network for the last one and a half year and as an amateur football fanatic for more than 10 years. He mainly covers on and off-field happenings taking place at Barcelona including transfer news, administrative changes, match reports, and any other eventful news coming out of the club.

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