Teenager Juan Miranda set for first-team promotion as Barcelona look for cover at left-back

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Miranda impressed for Barcelona's academy team in last year's UEFA Youth League.

Ernesto Valverde is turning to Barcelona‘s famed La Masia academy to strengthen his first-team at left-back after Lucas Digne’s transfer to Everton, according to Marca.

18-year-old Juan Miranda, who has been on the fringes of the first team, is now being eyed as the first-choice deputy to Jordi Alba.

While Alba enjoyed one of the best seasons of his career in 2017-18, getting three goals and 11 assists across all competitions, Digne’s departure means there’s no cover for the Spaniard, or anyone to challenge him and push him further.

Miranda and fellow academy product Marc Cucurella were the two main contenders once sporting director Eric Abidal reportedly told Valverde that left-back was not a position for which the club would release funds.

Cucurella is likely to go out on loan, but Miranda is being trusted with a first-team promotion, having impressed during the pre-season, though he’s made only a handful of appearances for Barcelona B.

The decline of La Masia has been a criticism of Barcelona in recent years, with few players having stepped up from the academy since the generation of Lionel Messi, Andres Iniesta, Sergio Busquets, and Gerard Pique all progressed into the first team.

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Live Barcelona Blog: Catalan giants face race against time to convert Philippe Coutinho's passport to Portuguese

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Welcome to today’s Barcelona blog. David Cooper and the rest of the Sport360 team will be with you throughout the day with the latest news, rumours and insights from the Camp Nou.

Our daily blog will ensure you have all the latest updates throughout the week but we want you to get involved, too.

Tell us your thoughts on what’s happening by tweeting @Sport360.

17:00 – Barca’s transfer fire-sale could reap big rewards

YerryMina

There’s still 24 hours for Barcelona to talk Premier League clubs into buying their cast-offs … and then a few more weeks to do the same for the rest of Europe.

Yerry Mina seems set to leave for Everton, but just who else could leave. And how much money could Barca raise? Read our thoughts here.

13:00 – Pogba to Barcelona?

France World Cup star Paul Pogba is determined to end his fractious relationship with Manchester United manager Jose Mourinho and move to Barcelona, according to British media reports on Wednesday.

The 25-year-old – who scored in the 4-2 World Cup final win over Croatia – has agreed terms with Barcelona for a deal worth £89.5 million over five years, according to the Daily Mail.

The reported agreement would see him pick up £346,000 a week, almost double what he earns at United.

10:00 – Coutinho in race against time to convert passport

Philippe Coutinho could be on the sidelines for Barcelona‘s Spanish Super Cup match against Sevilla on Sunday, unless the club can fix their non-EU player quota, according to Marca.

La Liga and the Super Cup only allow three non-EU players to be included in any matchday squad and the former Liverpool star is currently registered with a Brazilian passport.

New signings Arturo Vidal of Chile and Brazilian pair Malcom and Arthur Melo all need to be on the non-EU visas, so the 26-year-old is set to switch to Portuguese registration.

Coutinho’s wife is Portuguese and the player is able to register as a Portuguese citizen after three years of marriage.

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Barcelona's Yerry Mina misses Tuesday's training session

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Barcelona‘s Yerry Mina missed training on Tuesday as speculation grows on the future of the Colombian defender.

The 23-year-old has been strongly linked with a move to the Premier League with Everton and Manchester United reportedly interested in his services.

According to Marca, Mina was not part of the squad that trained on Tuesday although the club confirmed Mina and team-mate Marlon Santos were absent because they were taking part in different exercises away from the first-team.

The Spanish champions will complete a double training session on Wednesday ahead of their Super Cup fixture against Sevilla on Sunday.

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