The Catalans giants are looking to fill the void left by Dani Alves ever since he moved to the Italian champions.
Barcelona’s mouth-piece Mundo Deportivo have reported the club will be in the market in the upcoming winter transfer window to sign a low-cost full-back – someone who could complement Sergi Roberto, who has more or less made the role of right-back his own since his re-emergence as a player at that position.
Sporting Director Robert Fernandez had previously said he doesn’t like to get involved in the winter transfer window as the player faces transition issues at his new team in the middle of the season. But considering favorable avenues to fill the right-back spot have seemed to open-up for Barcelona, the club is willing to sign a player in January.
Dani Alves was allowed to join Juventus on a free transfer as a goodwill gesture by Barcelona in the summer, where he displaced Lichtsteiner from the team. And now, ironically, the Swiss defender could be the one who fills the void left by Alves at Barcelona.
Lichtsteiner’s contract with Juventus ends next June, and looking at the his current situation, it does seem unlikely he will be extending his stay at the club. What makes the option of Lichtsteiner more attractive for Barcelona is that the 32-year-old right-back isn’t in Juventus’s squad for the Champions League, which makes him eligible to appear in Europe if he joins Barcelona in winter.
Another option for the reigning La Liga champions is Croatian full-back Darijo Srna, whose contract also ends next year and is eligible to play in Champions League for Barcelona if he moves in January, as appearing in Europa League doesn’t make a player ineligible.
Other targets include Glen Johnson, Rafinha, Pablo Zabaleta, Branislav Ivanovic and Bacary Sagna. All of Barcelona’s targets for the right-back spot are in their thirties but on their last year of contract which makes the move a relatively a cost-free affair for Barcelona, whether it comes to fruition in this winter or next summer. The only caveat would be that some of them would not be eligible to play in Champions League, if the target is to sign for them this winter.
With Aleix Vidal completely out of favour with manager Luis Enrique, the right-back spot is one of the priorities for Barcelona to address. It is no wonder they are desperate to solve that area, even as soon as the upcoming January window.