There is a strong argument to be made that Barcelona don’t have enough strength in depth in defence, but Gerard Pique reportedly disagrees.
With their preferred pairing of the Spanish international and Samuel Umtiti, the Catalan giants boast the best defensive record in La Liga, having conceded just 13 goals in 29 games as they remain unbeaten.
With that in mind, it’s fair to suggest that they don’t need any reinforcements in that department. However, with an inexperienced Yerry Mina who hasn’t quite settled yet and an injury prone stalwart in Thomas Vermaelen as reserves, it could be seen as a weak point in their squad if one of Pique or Umtiti gets injured.
According to Diario Gol though, as re-reported by The Express, Pique doesn’t see it that way and has demanded that Barcelona don’t swoop for Sevilla defender Clement Lenglet. That in turn has now boosted Real Madrid’s transfer plans, as they could make a move with just a €30m release clause standing in their way.
The 22-year-old Frenchman has impressed for Sevilla this season, making 43 appearances in all competitions as he recently played a pivotal role in their Champions League progression against Man Utd in the last round.
Naturally, the La Liga outfit won’t want to lose him, but based on this report, while Pique has reportedly urged Barcelona not to make an approach, his form has seemingly attracted interest from the Bernabeu now too and so it remains to be seen if Los Blancos do take full advantage of the situation.
The same argument could be made against Madrid too in that they don’t have a great deal of quality beyond Sergio Ramos and Raphael Varane in the heart of their defence, and with the former set to turn 32 later this month, a long-term replacement could be needed sooner rather than later.