Former Arsenal midfielder Marcus McGuane has discussed his difficulties establishing himself with Barcelona, after moving on loan to Telstar this summer.
McGuane left Arsenal in January 2018 to join Barcelona, starting in the Spanish club’s B team. For the first few months, it looked to be a successful move, as he appeared in most of his new side’s matches. Then he started to drop in and out of the team.
Looking for more consistent game time, the midfielder accepted a call from former Arsenal academy head Andries Jonker to join Dutch second-division side Telstar on loan.
Speaking to the English media, McGuane recalled how things went south with Barcelona.
“Everything was going smoothly,” McGuane said. “I still hadn’t gone anywhere near my peak but I felt good. I was playing in my natural position and I felt I was getting better. Then Lopez got sacked and [Garcia Pimienta] replaced him.
“I felt the impact straight away. It happened on a Thursday before a game. We were travelling on the Saturday and I wasn’t even in the squad. It was a bit of a shock. After that it was tough. I never had the same feeling that I had during those first few months.”
In almost all of his appearances for the Arsenal u23s and u18s, McGuane played centrally, usually as a midfielder. He’d occasionally drop back into the defence, but he’d never play any further forward.
It was a bit of a surprise for him, therefore, to suddenly find himself on the wing for Barcelona B.
“Maybe as a kid, I played there. When I was nine or 10,” he said. “But I am not a right-winger.”
McGuane made his debut for Telstar in the Dutch second tier last weekend, playing 61 minutes in midfield. He started the match alongside another Arsenal youth product and loan signing, Charlie Gilmour, but unfortunately they lost 2-0.
All the same, it’s good to see him getting back out on the pitch.