Turkish national team manager Fatih Terim believes that Arda Turan is a wonderful signing for Barcelona. However, the manager is afraid of the fact that Arda won’t be able to play any football before January.
Arda joined the European Champions from their La Liga rivals Atletico Madrid for around €41 million earlier this summer. The 28-year-old Turkish midfielder enjoyed a wonderful spell with Atletico, winning a league title with the team in 2013-14 season.
According to Fatih Terim, Arda can be the Lionel Messi of Turkey and is a quality addition to the already very strong Barcelona side. Terim, who is his national team coach, says Arda will prove to be a strong signing for Luis Enrique and will fight hard for a place in the team with the likes of Rakitic, Neymar and Andres Iniesta.
“Arda is nothing short of our Messi,” Terim told Mundo Deportivo in an interview.
“The most important thing is that Arda is extremely happy to have signed for Barca. They’ve signed a legend, a great player and a winner. Those who say he has a volcanic character, that he’s difficult to work with, I say no.
“He’s played as a Xavi, an Iniesta, even a Busquets for me. And, where needed, he’s played as a second striker, as Cholo Simeone did. Arda will surprise people with his tremendous quality as a footballer. To play alongside Messi, Iniesta, Busquets, Rakitic, Suarez and Neymar makes you better day by day, game by game.”
However, Terim admitted that his absence from football till January due to a transfer ban on Barcelona will surely affect his game. Turkey are currently on fourth spot in their group of Euro 2016 qualifiers, five points behind second-placed Czech Republic and seven adrift of leaders Iceland.
“It’s a serious problem that Arda can’t play for Barcelona – not even in friendlies – thanks to the Fifa ban,” Terim continued.
“We, Turkey, are in a very tough qualification group for France 2016. We have opponents like Netherlands, Czech Republic, even Iceland, who have improved hugely.
“We’ll have very important games in the period when Arda Turan can’t play for Barca. It’s a shame. We’ll be in contact with the club and coordinate with them when he joins up with Turkey.”
Arda’s absence from football might be a worrying sign for Turkey, as they face tough opponents in their Euro 2016 qualifying campaign, resuming from September 3, when they face Latvia.