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Paulinho + X: Barcelona's biggest transfer flops

From the dreaded trident of FC Barcelona is before the start of the season in Spain's LaLiga become a one-off. Neymar gone, Luis Suárez injured and the declared transfers (Coutinho / Dembele) are delayed. Will Paulinho, who signed for € 40 million, really help the Catalans?

For now, superstar Lionel Messi has to do it alone - and our bookmakers believe that he will. Odds 1.40 if the five-time world footballer shoots his team to victory against Betis Sevilla this Sunday (from 8.15 p.m.). Even if new signing Paulinho were eligible to play, it's hard to believe the Brazilian will find his place in the offensive department.

Harsh criticism from Hristo Stoichkov

His obligation is like an alibi transfer. True to the motto: Look here, we're conjuring up the next national player from the Sugar Loaf! Paulinho came from Guangzhou Evergrande for about 1/5 of the record fee that FC Barcelona conceded for Neymar. The 29-year-old hardly played at the top level in the Chinese Super League. His strengths don't necessarily embody Barca DNA.

In fan circles the glances - of course behind closed doors - are envious of the big rival in Madrid. Marco Asensio, the secret real hero in the Supercup. At 3-1 at Camp Nou, he scored as a joker. In the second leg, Asensio initiated the 2-0 victory over the Catalans with a dream goal.

“I know his advisor very well. Why isn't Asensio playing in Barcelona? ”Asks club legend Hristo Stoichkov with a swipe at Barca president Josep Maria Bartomeu. "It's sad to miss a boy with a golden left foot."

Many Brazilians didn't ignite at Barca

Paulinho, 8 years older and around € 35 million more expensive than Marco Asensio, threatens to go down in club history as an (overpriced) misunderstanding. Among the biggest flop transfers by FC Barcelona are 3 of his compatriots.

Henrique: He came, saw and was immediately gone again. Signed by Palmeiras São Paulo for € 8m, Henrique, who was immediately loaned to Bayer 04 Leverkusen, did not play a single competitive game for Barcelona.

Keirrison: The Brazilian top scorer has even been awarded 4 times to another club. In the end, the striker was without a stake - 14 million for the bin!

Gabriel Milito: In 5 years with the Catalans, Milito won 10 titles. But after a cruciate ligament rupture in the triple season 2008/09, the defender missed many games and never found his top form back.

Geovanni Deiberson: Like Milito, the midfielder cost the 24-time champions around € 20 million. However, Deiberson (one goal in 26 games) did not come out on a joker role.

Dmytro Chygrynskiy: He was the first Ukrainian to wear the Barca shirt and perhaps the biggest flop of the Guardiola era. After only one season, Chygrynskiy returned to Shakhtar Donetsk. On this transfer, the Catalans made a loss of € 14m.

Javier Saviola: 49 goals in 123 games sound solid. The Saviola, advertised as the new Maradona, could not live up to the high expectations. The fact that Barcelona finally let the € 37 million striker move for a free transfer in 2007 speaks volumes.