Manchester United missed a trick by not signing Spain star Jordi Alba

by Sam Peoples

Barcelona have confirmed the purchase of Jordi Alba. Photo: Martin Rose (Getty Images)

A deal, thought to be worth €14million, will see Jordi Alba follow David Villa in switching from the Mestalla to the Nou Camp into a Barcelona side that he will slot seamlessly into, much like he has done in the Spanish team.

Valencia full-backs Jordi Alba and Joao Pereira have been two of the outstanding performers at Euro 2012 this summer, for Spain and Portugal respectively. Both have combined marauding runs with disciplined defending and have epitomised what a modern day full-back needs to be. Cafu would be proud. It comes as no surprise that tika-taka Barcelona haven’t waited very long and they have already brought Alba back to the club he left as a youngster.

He only became a left-back at Valencia due to injuries in the 2009-10 season, but it didn’t take him long to stake his claim to the spot and Barcelona have really pulled off a coup by getting his signature with Eric Abidal forced to retire from the game due to his liver troubles.

You imagine that Manchester United wouldn’t of stood a chance at gaining his signature with Barcelona in the running anyway but I would of at least liked to have seen us been in the running. Patrice Evra has been on the decline ever since the debacle of France’s torrid World Cup 2010 campaign and without a real alternative, he has become far too comfortable in his guaranteed starting berth at United.

Rumours are still rife that we are still hot favourites to sign Leighton Baines from Everton, with rumours that a transfer fee of around £15-20million being touted. When you see such talent as Jordi Alba getting bought for €14million, it makes you a bit sick.

Fabio is going out on loan next season and Ezekiel Fryers is stalling on signing a new deal, we are looking desperately weak in the left-back position. Whilst bolstering the central midfield still remains the priority, Sir Alex and Mike Phelan really need to keep an eye on the left-back slot and look further afield than Goodison Park to see what else is out there.

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