Football

Barcelona are right to sell Pedro to the highest bidder

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Pedro Rodriguez has enjoyed star billing for Barcelona again over the past week or so.

After hitting the winner in an impossibly entertaining 5-4 win over Sevilla in the European Super Cup, the Canary Islanders name was in the sports pages of virtually every paper and on every football website.

How could Barca even consider canning a player that could still be the difference? A player who at 27 years of age remains in his prime years as a footballer?

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It's probably a question that thousands of Barca fans have asked themselves, unhappy that another one of their own is likely to be shipped out to pastures new.

Manchester City have recently showed their hand but according to Sky Sports' expert Guillem Balague, a deal with neighbours United is "very, very close."

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It would appear that just the matter of  £21.2m payment is all that stands between Pedro and a new life at Old Trafford.

Not first choice

He'll go with the good wishes if not the blessing of the Catalans, but they are right to let him leave.

Clearly, Luis Enrique has a first choice front three which doesn't feature Pedro. A first choice front three that hit a world-record 122 goals last season in all competitions. A first choice front three that would grace any team in the world.

Pedro is not the sort of player who can be kept in reserve indefinitely because it doesn't just harm his development, but also how the team evolves accordingly.

Although he's not quite as prolific a marksman as in previous seasons, that can obviously be attributed to a lack of minutes and a rustiness when given the opportunity to step up. It's a well worn path trodden by many.

Victim of circumstance

Pedro is as much a victim of circumstance as anything else.

Should he be kept, arguably he is hindering the growth of players coming up through the ranks behind him. Munir El-Haddadi for example.

Much is expected of the youngster but he remains third choice in a left-forward role at the moment and unlikely to see any worthwhile first-team minutes unless the status quo changes.

At just 19, Barca have much more time to work with the player and mould him as desired. He has the luxury of time on his side and to know that his breakthrough season should come in two or three years time. Ditto Sandro Ramirez.

Bids invited

Once Pedro's release clause was mysteriously dropped from €150m to €30m, it was obvious that bids would be invited.

For a player that still has a good five or six years left at the top, the figure is a drop in the ocean for the top clubs. But that money needs to be reinvested in Barca club coffers.

Conservative estimates of their transfer outlay over the last two years is around the £234m mark per Soccerbase.

Pedro's sale will be small change in comparison, but at least chips away at the debt. A debt that threatens to get out of hand if Barca don't start cultivating their own world class exponents at La Masia again.

Much as they did in 2008 when a young player from the Canary Islands first made his mark...

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Topics:
Football
La Liga
Premier League
Manchester United
Barcelona

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