Although Malcom clearly has a degree of talent and remains popular among Barcelona supporters, he should leave in the summer if there is not a change in manager. Valverde’s reluctance to use Malcom has been a strange feature throughout the season. Over the course of the season, Malcom has started just six matches despite there being plenty of injuries and need for rotation in Barcelona’s front line.
Even when Malcom has played well, like in his goal and man of the match display against Real Madrid in the Copa, he has still remained on the bench or out of the squad. In the nine matches since that game, Malcom has made just one substitute appearance which lasted less than 10 minutes. Although Malcom may not eat at the same table as Messi, Suarez, or Dembele, Valverde used plenty of players in his first season who were not improvements over Malcom yet still received plenty of opportunities. In that season, the likes of Gomes, Aleix Vidal, Paulinho, Deulofeu, and Denis all received more opportunities than Malcom despite showing less on the pitch.
Furthermore, Malcom’s already scarce minutes will likely decrease further next season, as Barcelona appear in the market for another forward or two in the summer. At the moment, there are rumors that Jovic and Griezmann could both join the club in the coming transfer window. Given that Malcon barely gets on the pitch as things are, the arrival of any additional forward surely has to mean the end of his time at Barcelona.
If Malcom is put on the market in the summer, there surely will not be a lack of suitors. Before his move to Barcelona, the likes of Roma and Arsenal were heavily interested in signing him. Given his age, pace, and potential, there are plenty of big clubs where he could be a starter and who would be interested in him. For Barcelona, it should also not be too difficult to receive a fee at least close to what they paid for him.
Although this past season has probably made Malcom regret choosing Barcelona over Roma, there is still plenty of time for the Brazilian winger to turn things around. He is still fairy young, having just turned 22, and his performances in matches like against Real Madrid have demonstrated clearly that he does have the ability to establish himself as a top level player. For some reason, though, Valverde seems determined to ensure that will not happen at Barcelona while he is still manager.