This article is part of Football FanCast’s Transfer Focus series, which provides opinion and analysis on recent transfer news…
Barcelona officially confirmed that Juan Miranda will be joining FC Schalke 04 on a two-season long loan. And looking at the details of that deal, Barcelona were definitely right to go through with it.
After some days of initial speculation from the media, the Catalans have actually confirmed the transfer and the young 19-year-old will indeed be heading to Germany. Miranda had a short stint with the first team in the 2018/19 season but he was only reduced to four outings and couldn’t really bring the much-needed competition to Jordi Alba who remained the undisputed starter. The 30-year-old racked up an incredible 54 games last season.
But the talent was certainly there for everyone to see. Miranda won the U19 Euros with the young Spain squad and was one of their big performers on such a huge stage. In a total of five games he played in the competition, he scored two goals and assisted one but also tallied four assists in the qualification round before that.
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With the arrival of Junior Firpo to the senior squad, however, the path is seemingly blocked for a while now and that was a clear sign it would be for the best if Miranda continued his development somewhere else. But there are two key parts of this deal that make it all worth it.
Apart from stating that the loan has happened, Barcelona also confirmed that there will be no purchase option on the table for the Germans.
This is fantastic news and a brilliant piece of business by the Catalans. Not only will Miranda be able to play at the top level instead of being stuck with Barcelona B but in case this loan deal does him the world of good, Barcelona can reclaim their talented player and slot him into their own squad without worrying that Schalke might snatch him.
And Mundo Deportivo, who broke the story a couple of days ago, also claim that the Blaugrana have inserted a clause which states that Miranda has to play at least 20 games or otherwise he will be recalled after the first season. This means that he is more likely to get game time and experience but if he doesn’t, he’ll just return to Barcelona B.
And sure, Alba is 30 but he might still have some time in his legs before he calls it a day while Firpo is there to relieve him this season and make sure he doesn’t have to play 50+ games again. With that in mind, losing Miranda for now is not a catastrophe.
Removing that buy option from the deal, however, was crucial for Barcelona and that simple detail, along with the 20 games condition, makes this transfer all that much more acceptable.
Sending La Masia kids on loan is never ideal but with this one, Barcelona just might have hit the bullseye.