Samuel Umtiti’s career at Barcelona has taken a huge nosedive since he arrived at the club in 2016.
Having initially impressed for the Blaugrana following his move from Lyon three years ago, the France international has massively struggled with injuries at the Camp Nou, preventing him from getting a clear run in the side.
The 25-year-old has featured just once for Barcelona this term – playing 90 minutes in a 3-0 win over Eibar in October – with a foot injury sustained on international duty in September ruling him out for seven matches across September and October.
Umtiti returned to fitness for the Eibar match and impressed by keeping a clean sheet, but he is now once again back in the treatment room with a reoccurring knee injury that seems to be completely destroying his career.
The centre-half has now missed 34 games due to problems with his knee during the previous two seasons (via Transfermarkt), with that number set to rise due to his latest setback.
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However, it could have been prevented if Umtiti had undergone surgery last year. Said surgery would have ruled him out of the 2018 World Cup, however, so he instead opted against it and represented his country at the tournament.
Since returning from Russia, Umtiti has not been the same player for Barcelona and does not look like returning to his former level anytime soon, which of course is a huge disappointment to the club.
Sport claim that the Spanish champions are frustrated with Umtiti’s choice to play at last year’s World Cup instead of having the surgery he needed during the summer while the team were out of action, and now do not know what to do with their player, who costs them €7m-a-year to feature more in the treatment room than he does on the pitch.
Barcelona’s anger at Umtiti is completely justified considering the consistent issues their player is now having with regards to staying fit and the vast amount of money they are paying him.
However, from the player’s point of view, representing your country at a World Cup is something you can’t really turn down, so you can also understand why he opted against surgery to go to Russia.
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