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Barcelona’s biggest failures of the 21st century are named by the Spanish media, including Ibrahimovic and two former Arsenal stars – The Sun

ZLATAN IBRAHIMOVIC and Philippe Coutinho have been named by the Spanish media in Barcelona’s “Flop XI” in the 21st century.

Despite resounding success in the rest of Europe, the pair struggled at the Nou Camp.

    Barcelona 'Flop XI' of the 21st century, according to Marca
Barcelona ‘Flop XI’ of the 21st century, according to Marca

Two former Arsenal stars also made the list of 11 – but who else made the list of 11 failures, put together by Marca?

DEFENSE

Richard Dutruel, Martin Caceres, Dmytro Chygrysnkiy, Yerry Mina, Thomas Vermaelen

FRANCE goalkeeper Dutruel excelled at Celta Vigo, to catch the eye of Barca in 2000 – but he was behind the young Pepe Reina in order.

He left two years later with just 15 LaLiga appearances under his belt.

In defence, there are two former Premier League stars – with Marca pointing to four centre-backs, including Everton’s Mina and the former Gunners ace Vermaelen.

Mina lasted only six months at the Nou Camp before going to Goodison Park, playing just two games.

Incredibly, the Spanish team made a £20 million profit when it failed.

Vermaelen on the other hand was hampered by injury during his five star years at Barcelona.

He made just 34 appearances and was loaned to Roma before going to Japan to join Andres Iniesta at Vissel Kobe.

Chygrysnkiy was brought to the Nou Camp after seven years with Shakhtar Donetsk in a deal worth more than £20 million.

But he lasted only one season before returning to Ukraine after struggling on form.

Meanwhile, Caceres arrived at a hot prospect, but injuries and inconsistent form prevented him from ever reaching his full potential.

MIDFIELD

Alex Song, Andre Gomes

PREMIER LEAGUE fans will be all too familiar with this pair.

The song had all the promise in the world but was thwarted by injuries throughout his career.

Despite struggling to stay fit at Arsenal – and following a loan spell at Charlton – Barcelona had a chance with him in 2012.

    Vermaelen joined Barcelona from Arsenal in 2014 but struggled very strongly
Vermaelen joined Barcelona from Arsenal in 2014 but struggled very stronglyCredit: Reuters
    Alex Song fails to make an impact at Barcelona after moving from Arsenal
Alex Song fails to make an impact at Barcelona after moving from ArsenalCredit: EFE

In four years, he managed less than 40 LaLiga games, moving to West Ham between 2014 and 2015 and finally joining Rubin Kazan in 2016.

Song’s most memorable moment in Barcelona It has nothing to do with football.

The midfielder famously thought that Carles Puyol was handing him the LaLiga trophy to celebrate… but of course, it was given to Eric Abidal. Clumsy.

Everton star Gomes joined after enjoying a fantastic first LaLiga season with Valencia.

The Portuguese-class midfielder made less than 50 appearances in three years and was eventually sold to Everton after a loan spell at Goodison Park.

After his first season at the club, he endured the anger of being voted the worst signing of the tournament that year.

ATTACK

Ricardo Quaresma, Juan Roman Riquelme, Philippe Coutinho, Zlatan Ibrahimovic

Despite an amazing career that spanned 20 years and continues to grow, Quaresma didn’t have much success at Barcelona.

The winger was at the Nou Camp for just one season, after joining the pitch as a hot prospect at the age of 19, making just 22 appearances – leaving following a fractured relationship with manager Frank Rijkaard.

Riquelme Known as one of the world’s best and most skillful players, but coach Louis van Gaal at the time was not a fan.

He lasted only three years before moving to Villarreal, where he achieved real success.

Coutinho is the only current player on the team – and has been really disappointed after moving from Liverpool for a whopping £145m.

He joined Bayern Munich on loan for 2019-20, scored twice in defeating Barca 8-2 is on its way to lifting Ol’ Big Ears.

An odd choice on the list, Ibrahimovic cost Barcelona around £60m in 2009.

But an argument with the coach then Pep Guardiola means Zlatan transferred to AC Milan after just one season.

    Ibrahimovic only lasted one season at Barcelona despite his hot form
Ibrahimovic only lasted one season at Barcelona despite his hot form
Barcelona star Lionel Messi makes ‘At Home Challenge’ look easy after completing 20 kicks with toilet paper

https://www.thesun.co.uk/sport/football/11232294/barcelona-biggest-flops-arsenal-coutinho/ Barcelona’s biggest failures of the 21st century are named by the Spanish media, including Ibrahimovic and two former Arsenal stars – The Sun

Caroline Bleakley

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