Who Should Valverde Start Against Manchester United: Sergi Roberto or Nelson Semedo?
FC Barcelona travel to Manchester to take on the Red Devils in an exciting UEFA Champions League match-up between two of Europe’s biggest clubs. Barcelona Coach Ernesto Valverde has called up 22 men for the trip to England, and the Barcelona coach has tough decisions on who to start ahead of the clash.
One position Valverde will have difficulty with is right-back with Nelson Semedo and Sergi Roberto in contention. The two players have both been used consistently throughout the season by Valverde, and both are in good form and will stake their claims to play in the big game.
If Valverde is looking for offensive assistance against Man United, the Barca Coach should decide on Sergi Roberto as he has racked up 6 assists and 1 goal in 39 appearances this season in all competitions this season. Unquestionably, Roberto has more chemistry with his teammates as he has been playing alongside them longer, contrary to Semedo’s arrival to Barca two years ago. Because Roberto is a midfielder playing in a right-back position, he would add fluidity to Barca’s midfield as he consistently links Barca’s defence to their offense. Roberto constantly makes lung-bursting runs into the opponent’s penalty box, making an abundance of key plays that have resulted in many of the Catalans’ goals.
One would think Sergi Roberto is the obvious choice because of his experience and the offensive skills he adds to the game. One would be wrong, however, as a young Nelson is the other name in contention for the starting spot. The Portuguese defender has blossomed this season for Barca, displaying his solid defensive skills and his impressive speed. Valverde has rewarded the growth of the young player by playing him in 36 games in all competitions so far this season. Semedo is arguably the more defensive player, but this season he has adapted an offensive facet to his game. Semedo loves to dribble down the right flank, usually with ease due to his speed, and create options for his teammates. With each passing game, Semedo looks more confident with the ball, making smarter decisions and ultimately gaining the trust of his teammates and coaches.
It will be a difficult choice for Valverde, as the two players offer different skill-sets on the field.
Who do you think Should start? Let us know in the comments below.