Are Barcelona in danger of destroying La Masia?

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Barcelona continues to espouse the virtues of La Masia, their fabled academy, and football clubs around the world continue to look up to the Catalans' youth set up as the exemplar.

Despite the FIFA transfer ban being imposed on the club because of irregularities relating to minors within their care, Barca still manages to attract the very best players.

However, the status quo is definitely changing.

There was a time in the not too distant past when if you were good enough, you were given a chance to hone your craft over a period of months at the top level.


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Players such as Cesc Fabregas, Gerard Pique, Lionel Messi, Carles Puyol, Xavi Hernandez and current captain Andres Iniesta were all part of a "golden generation" of La Masia graduates.

Sergio Busquets and Pedro Rodriguez were the last two players to really make an impact at first-team level and it was 2008 when Pep Guardiola gave them their senior bow.

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Not good enough

Since then, every single player from the B team and below has been deemed not good enough to make their mark in Blaugrana, but each that has been considered surplus to requirements has made a name for himself elsewhere.

Gerard Deulofeu, Adama Traore, Marc Muniesa, Bojan Krkic. Just four names from a list that is practically endless.

Not all that have been released or sold would've been good enough for Barca granted, but some have suffered only through the impatience of the club.

Take Sergi Samper and Alejandro Grimaldo for example.

These two youngsters are two of the finest players ever to grace the academy. Grimaldo was the youngest ever Barca B player at 15 years of age and is now captain, whilst Samper has already shown that he has what it takes on the biggest stage.

On his debut in last season's Champions League, Samper out-passed and outclassed every other player on show, not wasting a single pass during the course of the game against APOEL.


Both players have let it be known that they are unhappy with their current situation, plying their trade in the third tier of the Spanish football pyramid.

With little chance of making their mark under Luis Enrique, the players are seeking pastures new.

For anyone connected with the club, the fact they even want to consider moving on is a travesty. And it's the biggest hint that all is not well in Sant Joan Despi, where Barca's academy facilities are based.

Munir El Haddadi and Sandro Ramirez have been in and around the first team during the early stages of this campaign, but they too are finding their match time limited.

In ruins

It wouldn't be a surprise to anyone to see those two skulk out of the exit door in due course too.

What does that tell you about La Masia, one of the pillars of the club? A pillar that the club is supposed to build it's philosophy upon.

Barcelona's need for big names and instant results is destroying everything that made the club what they are today.

If they're not careful, the pillars will crumble and La Masia will be left in ruins.

Should Barcelona give more of these young, talented players a chance before it's too late? Give YOUR opinion in the comment box below!

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Lionel Messi
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Andres Iniesta

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