Barcelona have just completed the signing of Brazilian sensation Neymar, but is he what they need?
Although it still very early in the transfer window it seems as though Tito Vilanova is targeting the wrong type of player.
The Spanish champions have won La Liga at a canter but cracks have begun to show on their seemingly invincible armour. Bayern Munich humiliated the four-time European champions in their Champions League semi-final, which began to suggest a turning of the tide.
For nearly a decade now the Catalan club have been the dominant force in Europe and while boasting the world's best player in Lionel Messi and the spine of the World Cup champions, it had long been perceived that their superiority did not look like diminishing, but a new era looks to be on the horizon.
As former Barcelona coach Pep Guardiola arrives this summer, he will inherit a very talented squad of players who boast power, pace and tactical nous.
In return the Bavarian will be gaining arguably the most sought after manager in world football, combined, their recent dominance only looks like continuing. So what do Barcelona need to compete with the newly crowned European champions?
The Germans have something that Barcelona lack - power and size. The tic-tac-toe football exhibited by the likes of Xavi, Andreas Iniesta and Messi has long been admired and rightly so, producing titles galore and much recognition, some even going as far as crowning them the greatest of all time. But teams have found efficient ways to deal with it and now it’s Barcelona’s turn to adapt.
After leaking seven goals against the German champions, surely defensive reinforcements should be paramount. Jupp Heynckes’ men shipped a mere 18 goals throughout their Bundesliga campaign, whereas Vilanova's team conceded 39 goals.
With an ageing and injury prone Carles Puyol and an out of sorts Gerard Pique, their lack of cover at the back is a real concern. Matt Hummels, Thiago Silva and Vincent Kompnay have all been mentioned as potential signings.
So yes Neymar is a very promising talent, a game changer and already a very accomplished and maybe even world-class footballer.
But is he so different from the likes of Pedro, Alexis Sanchez and Cristian Tello? All of which have far greater experience of European football. Is former Santos man really what Barcelona need to realistically challenge the likes of Bayern next season?
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