Barcelona Opinion: Why should Barca sign Philipp Max?
The 25-year-old has now become the latest entrant on the Catalans’ wishlist to provide cover for the primary choice full-back Jordi Alba. (h/t The Sun )
Max’s rise to prominence in recent years
Having previously played for Schalke and Karlsruher, Max opted to move to FC Augsburg, where he eventually garnered wider attention for his impressive displays.
In the previous season, the German full-back racked up four goals and seven assists in all competitions. His best season, however, turned out to be the 2017/18 campaign, where he registered an eye-catching assists tally of 13, thus becoming the Bundesliga’s second-highest assists provider.
Though Augsburg have recurrently failed to create any sort of impact, Max has shone individually and crossed the 100th match mark last season.
Being labelled as a full-back by trade, the former Bayern Munich youth product is much synonymous with an offensive role higher up the flanks.
Is Max the right man for Barcelona?
Elsewhere at Nou Camp, the Catalans’ search for the reinforcements is far from over unless they sort out a competent full-back.
Alba, 31, has established himself as one of the best players of his generation at his position. Yet, the rustiness hasn’t failed to catch up to him and the best example would be his off-colour games against Liverpool in the Champions League semi-finals.
The reasons might be the overwhelming work-rate and the absence of back-ups but there is a definite urgency for the Blaugrana to find a perfect second-string or even a successor.
Max fits the bill in all aspects. His knack for shrewd passes and the versatility to occupy several positions on the field are few things that will be savoured by the La Liga giants.
His additional attributes include a knack for sharp crosses, set-pieces and an eye for key passes, evidenced by the fact that he averaged 2 per game in last season’s Bundesliga.
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The German defender’s defensive stats also look fair, as he averaged 1.2 tackles and 1.4 clearances per game last season.
The Catalans have been productive so far in the current transfer window, as their attacking prowess looks daunting at the moment. Yet, they wouldn’t be done until they sort out a quality left-back.