Gavi Barcelona injury GFXGOAL

Thiago Alcantara, Giovani Lo Celso and the six options cash-strapped Barcelona have to replace Gavi with key midfielder ruled out for the season with ACL injury

Gavi's reaction was hard to watch. The Spain midfielder was visibly traumatised after tearing his ACL against Georgia. There was something difficult about viewing the polarising yet passionate midfielder realising that his football career would certainly be put on hold — all in real time.

The reaction to his injury has been one of overwhelming solidarity from unexpected parts of the football world, and, equally internal dread in Barcelona. Although the Blaugrana possess a deeper squad than in season's past, Gavi is an instrumental piece of Xavi's side; a versatile midfield presence who will willingly run himself into the ground for the badge. Those players are not so easily found, and they're almost impossible to replace.

Barca sporting director Deco admitted as much on Wednesday, telling Mundo Deportivo: "As of today, Gavi is a player who cannot be replaced. There is no player on the market available to do his job, neither with his mentality, nor with his ability."

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But that doesn't mean that help can't be sought to bolster the Barcelona midfield. While a like-for-like switch is impossible, an extra body, ideally one with high work-rate and some creative abilities, would certainly soften this crushing blow.

Still, that's easier said than done. Barca are, once again, struggling for funds. A new 'financial lever', put in place this summer, hasn't worked out, and the club are still reportedly expecting upwards of €40 million (£35m/42m) from an unreliable investor. A big-money move, then, isn't possible.

But there is optimism to be found here. Gavi's injury will clear up some financial room in Catalunya, as Barca will be able to use 80 percent of his salary in the transfer market. While that might not be enough to make a big splash, it could certainly facilitate a loan signing, or secure a cut-price option to fill a midfield spot for the next six months.

Barca still have seven games to worry about before potential transfer plans can kick into gear in January, but it seems that an injury to one of their key players could also offer the kind of wriggle room to find a temporary replacement in his position. GOAL looks at some of the best options available...