It’s an amazing achievement for any Barcelona youngster to force their way into the senior team, but it’s even tougher to establish themselves as a regular member of the setup.
Riqui Puig started to make the breakthrough last season and he did play in 11 La Liga games, but he found himself in and out of the side and he was often made into a scapegoat if he didn’t do well.
He turned 21 this summer so he’s reached that point where he needs to play regular football, but the arrival of Ronald Koeman doesn’t appear to be good news for the youngster.
He doesn’t have any place in the squad for Puig just now and he even suggested that he went out on loan, however that led to a strong response from the player who’s refusing to go anywhere.
In a way it’s admirable to see a player who is willing to fight for their spot in the team, but if he barely plays this season then his development will be stunted and that will only hurt him in the long run.
It doesn’t look like Koeman has changed his mind either, with Mundo Deportivo reporting that Puig will be registered with the B team this season, although that doesn’t necessarily mean he won’t be part of the senior set up.
He’s been given the number 28 which isn’t a great sign (Spanish squad numbers tend to go from 1-25 so being out with that is rarely a good thing) so it will be interesting to see how this season goes for him.
You still have to think he’ll benefit more by going out on loan and playing every game this season for someone, but that’s clearly not his intention just now.