A year ago Alfonso Pedraza was on loan at Lugo in Spain’s second division. Leeds United were soon to convince Villarreal, Pedraza’s parent club, to rip up the Lugo agreement and send him to Elland Road for the second half of the season.
Lugo were furious, the late January move to Leeds United gave them no time to find a replacement for their crucial winger, and several weeks later the Spanish club’s sporting director resigned.
By not having a clause banning a January recall, or banning it after a certain date, Lugo had been naive and left themselves open to what happened with Leeds.
Villarreal were keen because part of the Leeds agreement meant the English club paying a big fee to sign Pedraza permanently if they were promoted.
That didn’t happen, so Pedraza left muttering comments about a difficult ‘experience’ and then ended up at Alaves on loan this season.
Pedraza ending up replacing Theo Hernandez, who had been on loan from Atletico but moved to Real Madrid permanently in the summer.
Theo played left back for Alaves, and that’s the major role Pedraza has been used in, different to his Leeds and Lugo days.
It’s not been exclusively in defence the 21 year old has operated, and he was excellent further forward against Las Palmas at the weekend, getting an assist in a 2-0 win.
Yes, that Barcelona.
The Catalan club are keeping an eye on the player’s development with a view to a possible transfer.
Pedraza’s buyout clause is €20m, increasingly looking reasonable, and it’s something Barcelona have under consideration for the future.