Barcelona’s new record signing Ousmane Dembele made his anxiously awaited debut for the Catalans this past weekend against city rivals, Espanyol, and gave the fans a glimpse of what he has to offer the team.
Barcelona had already gone 3-0 up prior to Dembele’s introduction – but his direct dribbling and raw speed gave their attacking play a different dynamic when he replaced Delofeu in the 68th minute.
Famed primarily for his pace and ability to spread defences Dembele assisted Suarez’s goal in the 90th minute by peeling away from his marker and playing a first time cross directly into Suarez’s path – and the Uruguayan converted with ease.
DEMBELE’S FIRST ASSIST FOR FC BARCELONA pic.twitter.com/scUwg5wIgn
— R¹⁰ (@futbolmessi_) September 9, 2017
After Neymar’s departure, a lot of speculation suggested Barcelona’s ageing attack would struggle to have they impact they did several years ago, and those criticisms appeared to have some merit in their opening La Liga matches. Dembele’s debut did, however, showcase the attributes he can bring to their attack, and his injection of speed might be just the right counter-balance to the experience and ability Messi and Suarez have.
With Real Madrid struggling and Barcelona already 5 points ahead in La Liga, can Dembele help Barcelona to silverware in his debut season?