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Andreas Christensen; Barcelona’s New Pivot

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Andrea Christensen; Barcelona's new pivot
Andreas Christensen

Andreas Christensen has been starting from the bench recently despite his solid performances, leading to speculation that Xavi is considering playing him as a pivot. Pundits and fans have been calling for a creative solution for the DM position. Consequently, Christensen got to start as a pivot in the match against Alaves. Since the departure of Sergio Busquets, one of the most prolific defensive midfielders in football history, Barcelona has been searching for a perfect replacement.

The prediction from most pundits of the rough ride Barcelona will experience in trying to find Busi’s replacement has come to pass. It has been a difficult season for Barcelona without a reliable pivot. Furthermore, summer signing Oriel Romeu has not been meeting expectations. Romeu started on a high, but with his form declining. He forced Xavi to drop him from his starting lineup.

Christensen is great with the ball on his feet, has a good vision, and has an excellent final pass. Christensen is well-spent in the defensive attributes, too. He seems like a perfect fit for the DM position. Following injuries to eight first-team players, including Gavi, a pillar in the Barcelona midfield. And the drop in form by our only natural pivot, Romeu. The expectation was for Xavi to find a creative solution for the DM position.

Christensen put in a solid performance against Alaves. Alaves are aggressive and difficult to face in an away match. Christensen hardly made any mistakes except for a few shaky instances. He was solid defensively, provided a great cover, and gave our midfielders the confidence to progress forward.

 

Another key point: Christensen plays a passive circulatory presence on the ball as an anchor. He protects and holds the shape of Barca’s defensive structure when FDJ inevitably overcommits upfront. Some aspects that Christensen should improve on are being more vertical and taking advantage of spaces left in front of him by the opponent.

It was a good start, and we hope he grows into the position and builds his confidence to perform even at the highest level in Europe. Also, Xavi’s recent announcement of his departure at the end of the season might have emboldened him to try something different for the pivot position.

After all, there is nothing to lose at this stage in the season. The La Liga title is practically out of sight, with Barcelona trailing the league leaders by ten points. Barca lost the Super Cup and has been eliminated from the Copa del Rey. The growing injury list does not help the situation either. Our prediction is that we will see more of Christensen in the pivot position.

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