One of the problems, if you can call it that, that Luis Enrique will have to deal with over the coming months will be a selection headache on the right-hand side of defence. Dani Alves has made this position his own at Barcelonasince 2008, but the ‘Azulgranas’ signed Aleix Vidal from Sevilla – also Alves’s old club – last summer and the former Almería flyer is shaping up to be the Brazilian’s first serious challenger for several seasons.
The Catalan right-sider was brought on board before Alves penned a new contract, with many expecting the veteran Brazil international to depart, and came in with designs on a regular spot. Having been unable to make his debut yet due to the FIFA registration ban, the 26-year-old is chomping at the bit to show what he can do and justify his signature.
As Luis Enrique relishes, the competition will be fierce, although that is not the case on the left, where Jordi Alba is the undisputed first-choice. Although Adriano Correia and Jérémy Mathieu can both do a job there when the ex-Valencia man isn’t available, neither is up to the task of dislodging Alba. Adriano, for his part, appears perfectly content with being a utility man, while Mathieu is more reliable at centre-back.