Barcelona’s biggest flops XI of 21st century named by Spanish media, including Ibrahimovic and two ex-Arsenal stars
ZLATAN IBRAHIMOVIC and Philippe Coutinho were named in Barcelona’s “Flop XI” for the 21st Century by the Spanish media.
Despite enjoying huge success across the rest of Europe, the pair struggled at the Nou Camp.
Two former Arsenal stars also make the XI – but who else makes the flop XI, put together by Marca?
Richard Dutruel, Martin Caceres, Dmytro Chygrysnkiy, Yerry Mina, Thomas Vermaelen
FRENCH goalkeeper Dutruel excelled at Celta Vigo, catching the eye of Barca in 2000 – but he sat behind a young Pepe Reina in the pecking order.
He left two years later with just 15 La Liga appearances under his belt.
In defence, there are two former Premier League stars – with Marca naming four centre-backs, including Everton’s Mina and former Gunners ace Vermaelen.
Mina lasted just six months at the Nou Camp before heading to Goodison Park, playing a mere two games.
Incredibly, the Spanish side managed to make a £20million profit on the flop.
Vermaelen on the other hand was hampered by injuries during his five-year star in Barcelona.
He played just 34 times and was loaned out to Roma before heading to Japan to join Andres Iniesta at Vissel Kobe. The 36-year-old retired earlier this year.
Chygrysnkiy was brought to the Nou Camp after seven solid years at Shakhtar Donetsk in a deal worth over £20m.
But he lasted just one season before heading back to Ukraine after struggling for form.
Meanwhile, Caceres arrived a hot prospect, but injuries and inconsistent form ensured he never lived up to his potential.
Alex Song, Andre Gomes
PREMIER LEAGUE fans will be all-too-familiar with this pair.
Song had all the promise in the world but was hindered by injuries throughout his career.
Despite struggling to stay fit at Arsenal – and after a loan spell at Charlton – Barcelona took a chance on him in 2012.
In four years, he managed fewer than 40 LaLiga games having been shipped off to West Ham between 2014 and 2015 and eventually joined Rubin Kazan in 2016.
Song’s best-remembered moment at Barcelona had nothing to do with football either.
The midfielder infamously thought Carles Puyol was handing him the LaLiga trophy to celebrate with… but it was, of course, being given to Eric Abidal. Awkward.
Everton star Gomes joined after enjoying a superb debut LaLiga season with Valencia.
The classy Portugal midfielder made fewer than 50 appearances across three years and was ultimately sold to Everton after a loan spell at Goodison Park.
After his first season at the club, he suffered the ignominy of being voted the worst signing in the whole league that year.
Ricardo Quaresma, Juan Roman Riquelme, Philippe Coutinho, Zlatan Ibrahimovic
Despite enjoying a superb career spanning 20 years and counting, Quaresma did not have much success at Barcelona.
The winger was at the Nou Camp for just one season, after joining as a hot prospect aged 19, playing just 22 times – leaving after a rift with boss Frank Rijkaard.
Riquelme was known as one of the most skilful and classy players in the world, but then-boss Louis van Gaal was not a fan.
He lasted just three years before moving to Villarreal, where he enjoyed real success.
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Coutinho was a real let-down after his mega-money £145m move from Liverpool.
He headed to Bayern Munich on loan in 2019-20, scoring twice in the 8-2 thumping of Barca on his way to lifting Ol’ Big Ears.
The Brazilian was still on Barca’s books up until this summer – joining Aston Villa for just £17m after enjoying a renaissance on loan with them.
An odd selection on the list, Ibrahimovic cost Barcelona around £60m in 2009.
But a row with then-manager Pep Guardiola meant Zlatan was shipped off to AC Milan after just one season.