As the new season beckons in Argentina, River Plate look to have reeled in winger Ezequiel Barco. The deal will also allow other moves to fall into place. After over three years with Atlanta United of MLS, Barco will now return to his native country, according to Fabrizio Romano.
Argentine Ezequiel Barco returning home
Ezequiel Barco joined Atlanta United from Independiente back in 2018. He had graduated from the academy in Buenos Aires and played 38 senior games for the Argentine side before making the original switch to America. He was one of the three Designated Players (players outside an MLS team’s wage cap who they can sign regardless) for the Five-Stripes and despite showing many moments of magic, he was never able to fully fill the void left by Miguel Almiron. The Paraguayan had formed an imperious relationship with Jozef Martinez and the club have been unable to replicate this since he moved to Newcastle United. That isn’t to take away from Barco and what he did for the team from Georgia.
In terms of River Plate and with MLS arguably being an equally competitive league as that of Argentina, they have some player on their hands. Having been linked with Arsenal and Manchester United in the early days of his time in Atlanta, a move that has seen him go to a non-European side is somewhat surprising. That being said, Barco is still just twenty-two and so who knows what could happen in the future. River Plate came out on top in the league last season and so the arrival of Barco is a sign of their intent to defend the title.
What does this move mean for other potential transfers?
This move doesn’t just affect Barco as other moves can happen as a result. Atlanta are now able to bring in Thiago Almada from Velez. He will fill the third DP spot. Almada has long since been linked with a move away from Argentina, whether it be north to the US or even to Europe. South American talents are often the target of sides in the Champions League.
It would be obvious to link the move to that of Julian Alvarez but as Fabrizio Romano has reported, the two are not interdependent. Alvarez has been heavily linked with Manchester City and as well as being Argentinian, he has physical similarities to the legend that is Sergio Aguero. Aguero is one of the greatest players to ever wear the sky blue of the Manchester club and so their fans can only hope that Alvarez is able to live up to the hype. These two moves are not linked to the point where River are intent on keeping Alvarez at the club alongside new boy Barco.