Barcelona have faced criticism in recent seasons for failing to reinforce the right-back position. Nelson Semedo, the Benfica player who has emerged as Barça’s new target for that area of the pitch, has admitted to O Jogo that, like Sergi Roberto and Aleix Vidal, he has not always played there.
Nelson Semedo converted by Cristovao
“It was Hélder Cristóvao [Benfica B coach] who proposed that I should switch to right back, because at that point we only had one player in that position, and a lot of high-quality central midfielders,” explained the 23 year old.
“The gaffer saw that I had the qualities to play there, and I accepted it. At first, it didn’t seem a good idea because I was used to playing elsewhere, but it was the best thing that could have happened.
“After a few months had passed, I realised that it was the position I wanted to play. The trickiest thing for me was the tactical work, because I wasn’t used to being out wide.”
Barcelona and United chat avoided
The Portuguese avoided talking about a possible move to Manchester United or Barcelona.
“I’m well here, happy to be at Benfica with the team-mates that I have alongside me.”
Portuguese publication Record revealed in its digital edition this Friday that Barcelona are negotiating the transfer of Nelson Semedo for a fee of €50 million.
It won’t be easy for the Azulgrana to explain an outlay of that amount on a right-back, particularly as Semedo is a player with barely two years of experience at Benfica.