Mascherano in Barcelona: The Strongest Signing of La Liga
Barcelona have recently confirmed the signing of Javier Mascherano, who has been presented in the club’s shirt at Camp Nou as well. However, this whole episode didn’t present a pretty picture as the player and his former club, Liverpool, had frequent clash of interests.
Although, Mascherano was given a green signal by Liverpool for his transfer to Barcelona but still, he faced many hurdles from The Reds. The Argentinean had his family reasons behind this transfer, which were duly accepted by Roy Hodgson, Liverpool’s manager. However, after Hodgson rejected the bid from Barcelona, a state of mistrust was created between both of them. It was only after this that Mascherano decided to take matters into his own hands and not to play in Liverpool’s European fixtures.
His decision was not taken well by Hodgson, who blamed Mascherano for being selfish. In reply to Hodgson’s comments, Mascherano had claimed that his transfer to Barcelona was due even before the start of last season, but Liverpool created hurdles for him. So, Liverpool should be blamed for everything that went wrong in this drama.
Despite the whole episode, Mascherano has now reached Camp Nou and is ready to play a role in Barcelona’s campaign of the season. However, he wouldn’t make it to the first team directly and might have to prove himself before Pep Guardiola, which means that he would have to work hard during his training sessions. At present, Sergio Busquets is fulfilling the role of defensive midfielder in Barcelona squad. He would continue to do so before Mascherano replaces him eventually.
This transfer has further strengthened the Barcelona’s squad from last year, as Mascherano has proven himself to be a great player. Although, he replaces Yaya Toure but stills he is better than the African defensive midfielder. Mascherano has proven himself for Liverpool as well as for his Argentinean national side. The only problem is that Busquets has achieved a lot of success with Barcelona and also the Spanish national side. This means that it would be a hard decision for Guardiola to make way for Mascherano in the new team.
Busquets is known only for his defending, as he seldom goes forward to attack. Even, Yaya Toure was better than the Spaniard in this regard. Rather than going forward, Busquets likes to stay in front of central defenders for the most part, waiting for the opposition to come to him. This creates a little trouble for other midfielders like Xavi and Iniesta, who have to rush back to the ball, if possession is lost in the midfield.
Mascherano is no doubt better than Busquets at defending, as he doesn’t appear to be fearful in making robust challenges. He frequently closes down other players, as he is very quick to react. This would make the job of other Barcelona midfielders relatively easier, as they wouldn’t have to worry much about their back line.
Mascherano is also much better than Busquets in passing the ball. Busquets is not known for good passing, as he often makes short passes to his other midfielders. However, Mascherano is quite good in passing, with a wide range of passes, from short to long balls. Therefore, rather than a move initiating from either Xavi or Iniesta, Barcelona would have another option available in the form of Mascherano. This would really be threatening for any opposition as Barcelona are already unstoppable in their passing.
There is no doubt that this signing would prove to be the most significant one of this summer in La Liga. Although, many other players also made their way into the league, but Mascherano would probably make the most impact on his team. It would, therefore, be better for Guardiola to realize his potential and replace him with Busquets, as soon as possible.