Although a 2-0 defeat to Bayern Munich last night put an end to Barcelona’s excellent start to the season, Barça fans were dealt with a pleasant surprise earlier this morning as the club confirmed the contract extension of Gavi. The young midfielder has penned a new deal at Camp Nou until 2026, which should secure his long-term future at the club. The confirmation came after months of uncertainty and speculation over his future at the club.
However, according to Gerard Romero, Gavi’s contract extension will not be recognised in the form of a change in jersey number. At least, immediately. The young midfielder is currently donning the number 30 kit at Barcelona, despite establishing himself as one of the pivotal parts of the team’s midfield unit, alongside Pedri. Gavi has indeed moved ahead of Frenkie de Jong in the pecking order, having started six of the club’s seven matches in all competitions so far. His ability to create chances, coupled with his aggression and superior defensive work ethic have made him a crucial element in Xavi’s setup.
However, with Barcelona already registering their squad for the first half of the campaign, changes can only be made after the turn of the year. Romero believes Gavi could wear the #6 from January. It was a kit previously worn by Riqui Puig, who had left the club earlier in the summer, in favour of a free transfer to MLS outfit LA Galaxy.
More notably, it was Xavi himself who had donned the number six kit in the past. It was also passed down to the legendary Dani Alves, who wore it during the 2015/16 season before leaving the club. Although Gavi does not exactly resemble similar qualities or style of play as the Barcelona coach, he certainly has the technical prowess and the requisite talent to fill in his shoes, and carry the pressure of such a legendary kit, in the years to come.