Barcelona has completed the signing of the new gem of Colombian football Yerry Mina for just under £12 Million from Palmeiras.
Mina now becomes Barcelona’s second signing this month after Philippe Coutinho. Mina was a key part for Palmeiras when it won the Brazilian league in 2016 and was runner-up last year. The centre-back made 49 appearances for Palmeiras after joining the Brazilian side in 2016. He also won the Copa Sudamericana with his former club Santa Fe.
The centre-back is all set to fill the void left by Javier Mascherano, who is on the verge of joining China’s Hebei Fortune. According to Barcelona’s official website, Mina cost €11.8 million. And as part of his contract, he has a €100 million release clause.
Barcelona had a deal with Palmeiras to bring him in the middle of the year for about £9 Million but the club agreed to pay extra for the Colombian and advance the deal because of the recent injury to Samuel Umtiti and Javier Mascherano being all set to join the Hebei Fortunes from Barcelona. The Colombian’s true test now lies in adapting to life at the Camp Nou and the step up to European football.
And now we take a look at the six reasons why the 23-year-old attracted the attention of the Catalan Giants.
1) Aerial Presence:
Being 1m 95 cm tall, Yerry Mina’s aerial presence means a lot on the pitch. He can make his presence felt at the back as well as when he goes forward for set-plays. He is one of the few defenders in the world, let alone South America who is always a threat during free-kicks and even corners.
2) Defensive Anticipation:
The Colombian has a subtle touch with his feet. He weighs just 75 kg and is really light on his feet and his time in Brazil helped him a lot to improve his technique with the ball and his speed of reaction with a plethora of fast strikers present in the league. While the La Liga does have it’s fair share of pacey forwards, Mina should do relatively well and his experience will help him.
When you play for teams like Barcelona, Manchester City and team’s that prefer a possession style of football, the center-back always looks forward to playing the ball out of defence. Not to mention Mina’s stamina and athleticism will work in his favour with tackles and cheeky one-on-ones.
The 23-year-old has impressive positional awareness and is extremely confident and comfortable with the ball at his feet. Mina has the form that’s conducive to the Barca style. The composure with which he sents the ball in front clearly justifies that how well can he fit at Barcelona.
Mina’s quick reactions ensure him that he concedes very less number of fouls and he does not pick up any card. So far in his career, he has only one red card which dates back to 2013 when he used to play for Deportivo Pasto.
The centre-back is just 23 and is set to be a starter for Colombia at the World Cup. He was voted the best defender in the Brazilian top-flight immediately gaining wider recognition. The Colombian is a fantastic asset at both ends of the pitch. The player would surely feel the heat to perform, once he starts playing for the club. But this boy has all the potential to succeed at highest level.
6) Goal Scoring Abilities:
Mina is what Brazilians would call a ‘zagueiro artilheiro’ – a goalscoring centre-back. The 23-year-old can help start attacks from behind. Despite being a defender, his goal-scoring abilities have gained a wider recognition. He’s a decent finisher with his feet, too, and has great instincts in the box when set pieces come in. Mina has scored 20 goals in his short professional career.
Everyone’s not perfect and even Mina is a normal human being like us. The Colombian would dally on the ball, putting his team in danger. If there’s one more area where he will need to improve is his passing under pressure.
Barcelona is surely going to be benefited by this move. Yerry Mina is the guy, who can put an end to there defensive struggles. Incredibly difficult to beat in the air and lightning fast across the field, it will be really interesting to watch him take on the attackers.