Roberto tipped to play a different role next term while 'valuable' Semedo earns extra praise
- Last season, these two were competing for the right-back position.
- However, now Valverde reveals the Spaniard will play in the middle of the pitch next year.
- This potential change could see the Portuguese cementing his place in the defence.
Sergi Roberto faces an uncertain future at Barcelona. Even though he played for 45 minutes in Tuesday's friendly against Chelsea, there are no guarantees he could remain a regular in the next season. The 2018/2019 campaign saw Roberto competing for the right-back position with Nelson Semedo. Where will he play the following term?
Ernesto Valverde sheds some light on Sergi Roberto's future. He says after the 2-1 Chelsea defeat, as quoted by Diario Sport: "We're thinking this year he will play in the middle of the pitch."
If Valverde keeps true to his word, Barcelona and Sergi Roberto could face a drastic tactical change. His decision to move Roberto to the midfield almost proves that Nelson Semedo is going to be the first-choice right-back. What about him, by the way?
Valverde heaps extra praise on the Portuguese: "He's good for us. A really fast player against strong rivals like today. He gets up and comes back at great speed, a very valuable player for us."
Valverde's alleged decision to make Semedo an undisputable right-back comes right in time amid recent rumours linking the Portuguese with a potential exit. Meanwhile, the promising youngster Moussa Wague could be named as Semedo's back-up. Perhaps, the Senegal international could even earn a first-team promotion next year.
As for Sergi Roberto, his alleged future position could be rather doubtful. After all, the Catalans have already an abundance of midfielders within their ranks following the arrival of Frenkie de Jong. Moreover, Philippe Coutinho clearly feels better in the midfield while Rafinha hasn't been offloaded yet.
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Still, Roberto's versatility could certainly allow the Spaniard to replace every midfielder, moreover, he could still be used as a left-back to cover up for Jordi Alba.