La Masía facilities could end up housing Barça’s first team players

La Masía, after its renovation that was completed in October, 2011 / FC BARCELONA
La Masía, after its renovation that was completed in October, 2011 / FC BARCELONA

With the aim of resuming the competition, LaLiga’s protocols that the teams should follow could see Barcelona’s team staying in the La Masía facilities.

The return to activity and the Spanish football comeback is conditioned by LaLiga protocols that the teams must follow in order for football to return.

Among these is the third phase of readjustment to the competition, which talks about the previous concentration of the squads, from each club, for at least one week. Moreover, the training sessions should be performed in groups of eight.

This measure, requested by LaLiga to subsequently resume the football activity, is about keeping players either in a hotel or inside its sports facilities, but only if those fall under ‘high security’ range, or are totally disinfected.

To fulfill the necessary protocols, Barcelona begins to consider their options. Among these, the most viable option, according to information from the Spanish news outlet AS, would be to use La Masía as the place where the squad would stay, as the facilities of the Ciudad Deportiva Joan Gamper are of the highest level and the highest quality. Inside these facilities is La Masía, a 6,000-square-meter building spread across 5 floors, which has dining rooms, gyms, changing rooms, a water zone, a kitchen, a massage room, a large classroom, management offices, and even a room with games such as pool or table football.

The Oriol Trot Training Center — another name by which La Masía is also known — has 39 single rooms, 36 doubles and three triples: a total of 78 rooms, which currently sit empty, as all the academy players are at home going through confinement with their family.

According to the same report, a total of 20 players from the first team — including Ansu Fati, as well as members of the technical staff, would be individually accommodated in double rooms, with the other dressing room employees being housed in single rooms. Each room has a small space of approximately 20 square meters, and although does not have much luxury, has the absolute necessities needed: a wardrobe, a television and a desk.

Concentrating the entire Barcelona first team in La Masía would maintain the security guarantees required by LaLiga protocols, although it would also be one of the many drastic measures that clubs would have to strictly follow in order to resume activities and step by step go back to normal. Other measures include solo training sessions, not using the changing rooms, not having contact with teammates or training with masks and gloves — these are all ‘extreme’ measures that LaLiga could require.

According to the same news outlet, one of the captains and heavyweights of the team, Sergio Busquets, has already publicly expressed his absolute disagreement to concentrate either at the La Masía [within the Ciudad Deportiva] or in any hotel as part of preventative measures taken.

Waiting for what may happen and without — almost — nothing defined, the most viable option could be the housing of Barça in La Masía, where many former academy players would return to the iconic name of the place where they grew up, but with a few changes: the facilities remodeled and modernized but most importantly, the first team players still being part of the first team.