Barcelona defender Marc Bartra has offered himself as a potential option to the club's ongoing problems finding a right-back understudy to first choice Dani Alves.
La Masia graduate Martin Montoya was long seen as Alves' most likely long-term replacement but the now 23-year-old has slipped well down the pecking order under current coach Luis Enrique, and has reportedly already decided to leave the Camp Nou club in January.
Barca signed another right-back in Douglas for 5.5 million euros from Sao Paulo last summer, but the uncapped Brazilian 24-year-old has yet to make a positive impression at his new club.
With Alves suspended for Wednesday's Champions League group decider against Paris Saint Germain, Bartra -- a centre-back by trade -- told a news conference that he could step in if needed, while adding that he has played in the position in training recently.
"I always try to do what the coach asks at each session," Bartra said. "I played in that position for the B team. I have always liked it. I've played there in some training sessions. There are things which are different, but things that I like."
Bartra said he could understand the current frustration being felt by his long-time friend and colleague Montoya.
"We have been playing together since the junior sides, for 10 years," he said. "I know [Montoya] is in a difficult situation -- I have been there in previous years, and you must respect the decisions that he takes."
After critics of the Douglas transfer received more ammunition after the Brazilian's poor display in Wednesday's Copa del Rey win at Huesca, Bartra called for more patience, saying as it is not easy to come straight into top-level European football and perform.
"[Douglas] is a player coming from a different continent, with all that means," Bartra said. "It is not easy, but in every training session he tries to adapt and improve. He has difficulties with the language, but we are helping him."
Meanwhile, Mundo Deportivo has reported that, should the Court of Arbitration for Sport lift its current ban from transfers, in January Barca will try to sign either out-of-favour Valencia and Portugal right-back Joao Pereira or Granada's Cameroon international Allan Nyom.