25 year old Ibrahim Afellay is not exactly a happy bunny at the Nou Camp, games are at an absolute minimum, and he has hardly set La Liga alight, on the plus side in a few more weeks his space on the Barca bench will be nicely moulded to his backside, so at least he’ll be comfortable.
Afellay was heavily linked to Liverpool last Summer but instead it was the Catalan side that secured his signature, however after only a few months at the club it appears that all is not rosy and reports emerging over the last couple of days suggest that crisis talks could be held over the next few weeks to discuss the players future.
Afellay was highly regarded from a very young age, he joined the PSV youth academy in 1996 when he was just 10 years old, and he progressed well under their tutelage. He made his debut when he was 17, during the 03-04 campaign, but it was 2 years later that he really broke through and became a first team regular.
Throughout his time with PSV Afellay was linked with bigger clubs, some of which were in England, however he stuck with the Dutch side and turned into one of their star performers. His time in Holland ran its course, and in November last year a deal was agreed that saw him move to the Catalan capital in January, the fee was £2.6million and he signed a contract that could keep him at his new club until 2015.
Things however have not exactly panned out as hoped, Afellay has managed just 9 appearances, mostly off the bench and we brought you reports a few weeks ago suggesting that he was already frustrating with the lack of opportunities. In some ways you can’t blame the player, he wants to be playing football. He plays predominantly as a forward however, and when he signed he must have been aware that he would not be displacing Villa, Messi or Pedro any time soon, so I would have thought he could have shown more patience.
Our friends at talksport though reckon patience are the last thing that Afellay is willing to show. They claim that in a new development the tricky winger is now ready to seek crisis talks to discuss an exit from the club this Summer. It is believed that the Dutchman is wanting to seek assurances over his future, and if none are made, talksport claim that he will be moved on this Summer.
This will come as great interest to Kenny Dalglish and Liverpool who were reportedly monitoring the player in January with view to a Summer move. This news could definitely speed up that process and it is suggested that it may also bring Arsenal into play who have admired the winger before and maybe tempted to move for him at the end of the season.
Afellay is clearly a good player and it baffles me that he is ready to throw in the towel so early on in his Barcelona career, it seems somewhat shortsighted of him to believe that he would waltz straight into the first team. If he decided to move there, he knew he would face competition, surely it is better to give it at least 12 months to see what would develop?
Well in modern football, maybe players aren’t as as blessed with patience as they once were. He would be a great addition to the Anfield set up, at 25 he is just entering his prime and I believe he has all the required skills to be a good player in the Premier League. I think they will face competition from other clubs, but he would be a first team starter on Merseyside and I think at this point in his career that would be a deciding factor over say a move to the Emirates.
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