For someone who was only snapped as a cover, a return of three goals in his last three appearances warrants some kind of respect.
Luuk de Dong’s arrival in Barcelona was mostly termed as a panic buy since the club only had Martin Braithwaite and Sergio Aguero as classic number 9. Although Aguero’s premature retirement coupled with Braithwaite’s injury issues forced de Jong to take a senior role, lack of minutes meant goals were far and between.
During his first four months, the Sevilla striker got a total of 323 minutes under his belt, scoring a solitary goal. Hence it came as no surprise that the 31-year-old not only lost the assurance of his manager but also lost the fan support, leading to the suggestion that Barca might as well end his loan early to chip in Alvaro Morata from Juventus.
The former PSV frontman, however, has turned things around since the turn of the year, bagging three goals in as many appearances, while making sure there’s hope after all.
Expectations bring disappointment; this is an ideal example of Luuk de Jong’s tenure at Barca. The overburden imposition of encumbrance was viable in the striker’s style of play earlier in the season, but once those over withdrawn, the 31-year-old eradicated the field by scoring a winner and an important equalizer.
And this is exactly the case with Frenkie de Jong. Brought from Ajax for an initial fee worth €75 million, the midfielder was supposed to bring back the old joy, but maybe it’s too early for the 24-year-old to do so.
Expectations are plenty and while there is no shortage of playing minutes, the Dutch midfielder seems to have lost his touch and is now being considered after younger teammates like Gavi and Pedri.
It is surprising, but true!
The peculiar case of two de Jongs at Barcelona is an interesting study. While the one who was supposed to excel is having a difficult time, the one who was only thought to be a third-wheel has now taken the driving seat.
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