Koeman's list of expendables and must-haves

These three preseason friendlies have served to clearly outline Ronald Koeman's roadmap for the coming months. To begin with, there are a total of nine players in the current squad – made up of 32 – who have not played for a minute yet, a full-fledged invitation from the current coach to leave the club. Those pointed out by Koeman They are: Arturo Vidal, Luis Suárez, Matheus Fernandes, Samuel Umtiti, Juan Miranda, Oriol Busquets, Rafinha Alcántara, Moussa Wagué and Jean Clair Todibo. In addition, after Gamper's game against Elche, we learned from Koeman himself that there are three other players that the coach has recommended that they look for an exit in the form of a loan because they are young and need to vent in a club that allows them to continue progressing : Riqui Puig, Carles Aleñá and Pedri.

In total, twelve players to whom Koeman has opened the exit door, due to one circumstance or another, and some more could still join, such as Nelson Semedo, although in the case of the Portuguese international it would be more for economic reasons than sports.

In any case, if all exit operations were closed, Koeman would ultimately have a squad of 20 players from the first team, which would allow him to face five incorporations if he considered it necessary to reinforce the block.

On the other side of the coin are the players that the Dutch coach has made essential for his project. One, in the case of goalkeeper Neto, in a timely manner, due to the injury of the owner, Ter Stegen, but the rest due to personal conviction. We are talking about Sergi Roberto, Gerard Piqué, Jordi Alba, Frenkie de Jong and Leo Messi. This quintet of footballers adds up to 197 minutes each, following a progressive and increasing work pattern in the minutes played: in the first friendly against Nàstic they played 45 minutes, in the second against Girona a total of 62 and in the last against the Elche completed the 90 minutes. This group of six players is also joined by Philippe Coutinho, who with 185 minutes is part of the hard core.

From here there are other two footballers who stick their heads out. They are Sergio Busquets and Antoine Griezmann, both with 170 minutes. In both cases, they played 45 minutes in the first friendly, 62 in the second and 63 in the third.

Among the new ones is Portuguese Trincao who has most convinced Koeman, adding a total of 134 minutes in three games, for Pedri's 90, Miralem Pjanic's 27 and Matheus's 0 minutes. In any case, the Bosnian has all the numbers of being a fixture of the Dutch coach in the double pivot throughout the season: we must not forget that the former Juventus player has been confined at home for two weeks by the coronavirus and it still lacks the rhythm of competition.

Of the youth of the branch, who has won the stripes during the preseason is the Uruguayan central Ronald Araujo. And not only because he has already accessed a number of the first team, number 4, but because he is the one that has participated the most (135 minutes), also completing an entire match, the second friendly against Girona. Riqui Puig has played 73 minutes, with the burden of not having been called up even for the Gamper, while Ansu Fati, just out of injury, has 63 and goalkeeper Iñaki Peña, 45.