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Murillo arrives but Barca’s ‘Puyol search’ continues to cost them

Murillo arrives but Barca’s ‘Puyol search’ continues to cost them

Barcelona have sealed the loan signing of Jeison Murillo from Valencia, but the club’s search for a’new’ Carles Puyol continues to cost them.

With injuries to Samuel Umtiti and Thomas Vermaelen, the Catalan club have had no option but to look at the transfer market and look for a suitable replacement to come in and provide cover for Gerard Pique and Clement Lenglet.

Various targets have been linked via English, Spanish and Italian press which include Juventus defender Daniele Rugani and former Premier League duo Branislav Ivanovic and Martin Skrtel.

But, confirmation was made by Barcelona on the signing of Colombian international Murillo, who has been in and out of the Valencia side due to various injury problems over the last 12 months.

The 26-year-old passed fitness tests on Thursday and met up with his new team-mates, but he will not be able to feature until the New year.

Whilst the signing has been met with pleasure by Barca fans, you have to question the club’s search for a ‘new’ Carles Puyol.

Tactically and technically, with Samuel Umtiti – Barca got it right as his partnership with Gerard Pique blossomed prior to his injury, but having spent big in the last couple of years on defensive options – question marks remain on the club’s recruitment process.

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Yerry Mina, Clement Lenglet, Thomas Vermaelen and Jeremy Mathieu have all played roles alongside Pique, but failed to hold down a regular place, although Lenglet has performed well this season in Umtiti’s absence.

Murillo arrives simply as cover at the moment, but with a 25m euro buy-option next summer – time will tell if Barca spend even more on a defensive option, adding to the 138m euro spent on the aforementioned.