BARCELONA

Barcelona: Koeman tells Riqui Puig he is not in his plans

According to RAC1, the Dutch coach has prioritised keeping Carles Aleñá in the first team squad and Riqui Puig will not feature this season.

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Barcelona: Koeman tells Riqui Puig he is not in his plans
GORKA LEIZA DIARIO AS

Riqui Puig's omission from the squad for today's Trofeo Joan Gamper has an explanation. According to RAC1, the young midfielder does not figure in Ronald Koeman's plans for the new season and has been informed of the decision and told to search for another club where he can playing time on loan.

In theory, Koeman has been more impressed by the work ethic and contribution by on of the other youth team graduates, Carles Aleñá, and with a clear excess of midfielders in the squad with Pjanic's arrival, one of nine had to make way and the player elected is Riqui Puig.

So the decision to leave him out of the list for the friendly against Elche was purely technical, and a signal for other clubs to know that the player is on the market.

Barcelona's youth team pearls

It goes without saying that the news will not go down well with those who fiercely defend the policy of bringing young players through the academy system - and see one of the great hopes to have emerged from La Masia (along with Ansu Fati), packing his suitcase to leave - at least for the new season.

With Riqui Puig out on loan, Barcelona will free up a place in the first team squad - if he stays, he is guaranteed a squad number, as stipulated in his contract. That would give Koeman a little more leeway to confect his squad which at the moment, consists of 32 players.