The Barça trio came on against Plzen at the Camp Nou
The fifth time was the charm. Barça's 5-1 win over Viktoria Plzen gave the Blaugrana the first three points of the Champions League group stage, as well as the chance to see three players who had yet to make an appearance this season: Gerard Piqué, Pablo Torre and Memphis Depay.
The increased competition throughout the team, especially in defence, midfield and up front, deprived them of game time. The scoreline enabled Xavi to bring them on in the Champions League opener.
Gerard Piqué is experiencing an anomalous season. Used to being the undisputed leader of the defence, this season he is helping the team in another role. It is still surprising to see him sitting on the bench regularly.
The progression of Araujo, the step forward of Eric Garcia and the signings of Christensen and Ansu Fati have relegated him to being the fifth centre-back in the squad. Yesterday he came on after the break, replacing Sergi Roberto, and played good.
Pablo Torre received his reward in the form of minutes with the first team in the biggest stage of european cup competition. Xavi convinced him not to go out on loan in the transfer market and stay at Barça to continue learning.
Training with the first team and not playing is frustrating. Even more so if he doesn't even get called up to the reserve team.
The coach promised him minutes and yesterday he made his debut playing the last ten minutes, replacing Kessie in midfield.
Finally, Memphis ended up getting his way in the transfer market and managed to stay at Barça, pushing -in part- the departure of Aubameyang.
The Dutchman starts as the sixth striker in the squad and his role will be very different from the start of last season, when he emerged as the team's attacking focal point.
Those were different times.
He was on the pitch for the last quarter of an hour, coming on for Dembélé, and showed some good quality.
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