It shouldn’t come as a surprise that Barcelona have yet another superstar waiting in the wings to make it into the first team for good. La Masia continuously churns out top talent and it is no different regarding Sergi Samper, who joined the famous academy at the age of just 6. He has been likened to another Barcelona legend Pep Guardiola and plays in a similar defensive midfielder’s role.
Samper has been turning heads with his performances in the Barca B team and should make it into the first team pretty soon. We scout the 20-year-old as he continues his La Liga journey with the team from Catalonia.
The next Pep on the pitch
The right-footed midfielder plays in the centre of the park and with all the talent in the centre of the park; he does provide Barcelona with something different. Unlike another central midfielder, Sergio Busquets, Samper is not a player or a pivot that is known for breaking up the play of the defences. Samper is known to be a great passer of the ball.
Similar to the playing style of Andrea Pirlo, Samper can ping the ball around midfield and can link up with the attack fairly quickly. The youngster can pass the ball around and is extremely confident and comfortable with the ball at his feet. He isn’t a defensive midfielder but has to play alongside one to get the best out of his game.
Samper is also built well and can ride over the tough challenges but he isn’t the best when it comes to winning the ball back from the defence. Sergi also can link up with the defence and has the energy to run up and down the field, which makes him a great option to even play in the attacking midfielder’s role, though his shooting accuracy isn’t the greatest; he rarely gets into the opposition box.
The question for Samper would be where would his development continue? He had been linked with a move to Arsenal and was highly praised by Arsene Wenger but would Barcelona allow another one of their starlets to make the move to London? They had failed to keep Cesc Fabregas all those years ago but they did sign him from the Gunners a few seasons later. Now, Manchester United are looking to sign him.
Samper would also have to think about the number of players ahead of him with Turan, Iniesta and Rakitic all playing big roles for Barcelona, maybe Samper needs to stick around at Barcelona and bide his time. Luis Enrique has given chances, like most Barcelona managers, to youth products and Sergi could be next in line.