Barcelona signings ranked from 'disaster' to 'inspired', featuring Griezmann and Coutinho


Barcelona are officially in crisis after their humiliating Champions League exit last week.

The situation at Camp Nou was bad enough after their capitulations in La Liga and the Copa del Rey, but crashing out of Europe with an 8-2 thrashing to Bayern Munich was the lowest of lows.

Now, the Blaugrana are faced with having to resuscitate their squad ahead of the fast-approaching 2020/21 season and it's reported that only five first-team players are not up for sale this summer.

Barca's shocking recruitment

It couldn't have been clearer during the Champions League quarter-finals that great swathes of this Barca squad are either past their best, too old or simply not good enough to represent the club.

And most football fans seem to be singing from the same hymn sheet when it comes to Barcelona's recruitment and the song goes as follows: terrible, absolutely terrible.

Spanish newspaper Marca has highlighted that very fact this week by outlining the 23 players on whom Barca have spent over €900 million since their last Champions League triumph.


Barca's signings since 2015

And if you include the two signings they've already made this summer, it brings the Catalan total beyond the €1 billion mark - and all with no European Cup to show for the spending.

We could end the article here and that alone would tell you everything about Barca's recruitment over the last half-decade, but we've decided to delve even deeper into the 23 players in question.

In fact, we thought it was prime to dust off another template on the popular website 'Tiermaker' to rank the 23 signings listed by Marca from 'absolute disaster' to 'truly inspired'.

I doubt it will come as any surprise that more Barca signings feature towards the bottom of the rankings than the top but, without further ado, check out the full breakdown below:


Absolute disaster

Philippe Coutinho

Antoine Griezmann

Andre Gomes


A massive factor with this category is context and namely, how much Barcelona forked out on two of the players in particular.

Besides, it's hard to argue that either Griezmann or Coutinho literally played like absolute disasters, but they certainly didn't perform like two of the most expensive footballing stars ever purchased.

Neither nine goals in 35 La Liga games nor being dumped out on loan after 18 months are acceptable returns for players that cost Barca more than €100 million each. So, context applied, 'disaster' seems apt.

Meanwhile, Gomes went through both professional and personal struggles at the club, while Malcom only lasted a year, scoring merely four goals, after all that effort to steal him from AS Roma.


Bang average

Arda Turan

Denis Suarez


Martin Braithwaite

Yerry Mina

What is there even to say about these five misfits?

Suarez, Turan and Braithwaite were never nor will ever be up to Barcelona standards, while Mina's cameo at the club was a bizarre one and Neto can't hold a dimly-lit flame, never mind a candle, to Marc-Andre ter Stegen.


Fine, I guess

Aleix Vidal

Arturo Vidal

Jasper Cillessen

Lucas Digne

Paco Alcácer

This is the category where you can't necessarily argue that any of these players were a flop, but nor have they achieved enough at the club to make you do anything more than shrug your shoulders.

The two Vidal's were decent enough servants for Barca, though neither brought their best form to Catalonia, while Cillessen earns a place over Neto for at least warranting more game-time with his quality.

Digne is another player who, yes, has proven his quality in the Premier League, but I'm doubtful that he was ever going to kick on at Barca and sadly, Alcácer proved nothing more than a solid option off the bench.


Too early to judge


Jean-Clair Todibo

A pretty boring category, admitted, but it would be brutal of us to judge Todibo when he's only completed five first-team outings and there's still plenty more to come at just 20 years old. 

As for Pedri? The lad hasn't made a single appearance for Barca, so let's hold our horses for now.



Frenkie de Jong

Ousmane Dembele

Arthur Melo

Samuel Umtiti


Have I been far, far too kind to Dembele here? Perhaps, but I'm inclined to think 19 goals in 74 games is nothing to be sniffed at for a 23-year-old who has been constantly blighted with injuries. 

If the club can stay patient and the player starts to show an elite mentality, then the rewards could be manifold further down the line.

As for De Jong, it's been a solid first season and there's surely more to come from the 23-year-old, while Melo shouldn't be seen as anything less than a good signing just because he didn't turn out to be 'The New Xavi'.

Umtiti has struggled with injuries recently, but his four-year stay has been a positive one on the whole and Paulinho proved to be an inspired squad player for Barca, albeit merely for a single season.


Very good

Nelson Semedo

Clement Lenglet

Yes, ladies and gentlemen, this really is as good as Barca's transfer activity has gotten over the last five years and even these two survivors from the pack have their detractors in Spain.

Nevertheless, the Blaugrana have gotten plenty of bang for their bucks with Semedo, who has gone on to make 124 appearances after a €30.5 million transfer fee that looks pretty paltry on this list.

Meanwhile, Lenglet has the potential to become a fantastic long-term successor to Gerard Pique and was arguably the club's best player, give or take a certain GOAT, during the final 18 months of Ernesto Valverde's tenure.


Truly inspired


Yeh, sorry Barcelona fans, but I don't we can honestly look at any of these 23 signings and call their arrival 'truly inspired'.

You could create a similar list for near enough every top European club and point to at least one inspired purchased - Virgil van Dijk to Liverpool, Bruno Fernandes to Manchester United, Kylian Mbappe to PSG etc.

At Camp Nou, however, we're even clutching at straws in the 'very good' category.


Full graphic


GIVEMESPORT's Kobe Tong says

There can be no greater inditement of Barca's recent devolution than the fact none of their signings in the span of five years can be considered any better than 'very good'.

And even then, the likes of Lenglet and Semedo, while undoubtedly decent across the board since arriving, looked completely out of their depth during the 8-2 annihilation dished out by Bayern.

If reports are to be believed, Barca are taking the perfect approach in putting the majority of their first-team up for sale and a complete makeover is required if European success is to return. 


And to tell you the truth, it might even be an appropriate time to wave goodbye to Lionel Messi and contemplate whether shedding their reliance on him could benefit them in the long-term.

At the very least, however, the time could be nigh to forget about sentimentality and start handing out P45 forms to the likes of Pique and Luis Suarez.

There's far too much deadwood and far too many ageing players in a squad that might well have cost over €1 billion to assemble, but, frankly, performs like one that cost €100 million.

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