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Feb 12, 2018


Paco Alcacer at the Camp Nou


Signed back in 2016 from yo-yoing Valencia, Paco Alcacer looked set to be the next home grown player who’d work his way into the starting line-up at Barcelona. Luis Enrique was in charge when he signed for the club, with it trending in the traditional ideology of only bringing certain styles of players from a select few nations, with Spain obviously being the primary option, but the transfer of this forward always looked like an arguably pointless one.



He’d been a highly-rated number 9 for some time, helped by Valencia’s efforts to gradually thread him into The Bats’ starting eleven, taking pointers from playing alongside Roberto Soldado, Aritz Aduriz and Jonas along the way. Alcacer ruined what once was a growing career as a positive result from Valencia’s youth system by refusing to play in the summer of 2016, forcing his move to Barcelona, but he’s been far more ineffective at the Nou Camp than he was at the Mestalla.




Many neutrals saw the deal as being a means of Barcelona flexing their muscles over the lesser sides in La Liga but Paco Alcacer is a proven talent, scoring thirteen league goals in his last season at Valencia at twenty-three years of age, with there being more than enough reason for him to grow more-so from making the move.


At the time, Lionel Messi, Luis Suarez and Neymar dominated Barca’s attacking efforts, so it was already challenging for Alcacer to make himself known, but further final-third players continued to pour in, including Philippe Coutinho, Ousmane Dembele and Gerard Deulofeu, making it even more difficult for the striker to force his way in.


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To date, Paco Alcacer has scored eight goals and contributed six assists in thirty-one league games played. He’s not likely to play any stronger part in the starting eleven any time soon either as he’s only played a whole ninety minutes on one occasion this season, which came in Barcelona’s comfortable 2-0 win over Sporting Lisbon, where he scored the opening goal.


It wouldn’t be fair to say that he’s being wasted at Barcelona, especially when considering how Luis Suarez will always start ahead of him in a side that readily plays with a front three, using one striker position. The decision to join Barcelona was a strange one though, and it was only made worse by how he burned his bridges through leaving Valencia, as refusing to play could rule out any potential return, which wouldn’t be the worst outcome for the Barca number 17, as his former side currently sit at third and are easily in the best shape they’ve been in since winning the title under Rafa Benitez back in 2002.


The future of Paco Alcacer is an uncertain thing. He could come into the side if Luis Suarez is injured, or if Ernesto Valverde opts for a change, but as he turns twenty-five in August, it’s hard to tell whether his place at the Nou Camp is as a reliable back-up, or just as an overlooked benchwarmer.

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