Hansi Flick 'makes early decision' on Vitor Roque's Barcelona future

  • Hansi Flick tasked with how to use Vitor Roque
  • Barcelona striker had limited game time under Xavi
  • Club finances make many new signings unlikely
Vitor Roque had limited chances at Barcelona in 2023/24
Vitor Roque had limited chances at Barcelona in 2023/24 / Eric Alonso/GettyImages

Barcelona coach Hansi Flick is believed to have made the first big decision of his reign and it centres on the immediate future of teenage striker Vitor Roque.

Roque arrived from Athletico Paranaense in January in a previously arranged deal that could reach €61m in time. Yet the Brazil international was afforded just 319 minutes across 14 La Liga appearances, starting only twice, even being completely unused for four straight games at one stage.

It prompted a furious response from agent Andre Cury with an underlying threat to find a new club, while sporting director Deco recently played down speculation that Roque would be loaned out.

With Flick now in place as the boss, SPORT has reported the intention is for Roque to stay and continue develop under the wing of 35-year-old Robert Lewandowski.

Robert Lewandowski, Vitor Roque
Roque has one of the best to learn from / Alex Caparros/GettyImages

Although it has been teased by La Liga president Javier Tebas that Barcelona are not too far away from being back under 1:1 spending rules, as opposed to 1:4 as it is now, financial constraints still exist for at least the short-term. That is why Flick seems ready to use Roque immediately, aware that his mission is to get the most out of the players available rather than expect new arrivals.

The player's camp at least appears optimistic about Roque playing under a new coach.

"Vitor Roque expected more minutes with Xavi. Now, with the new coach he is starting from scratch," Cury commented in late May. "In front of him, he has a world-class player like [Robert] Lewandowski. Vini Jr., for example, took two years to adapt."

Roque made his senior international debut for Brazil in March 2023 but has not been called up since and won't be going to the Copa America. It could wind up being a blessing in disguise that allows the player the opportunity to use the summer to properly bed in at his club.