Adama Traore’s long route to the top: Richard Buxton
Wolves winger the latest in a long list of talents who had to leave Barca to flourish
La Masia continues to influence Spain's international fortunes in ways never imagined.
Barcelona's fabled youth production line became the blueprint for their country's World Cup triumph a decade ago with a squad featuring eight players - including Andres Iniesta - developed at the 18th century farmhouse that stood in the shadow of the Nou Camp.
The Catalan giants are producing players capable of helping La Roja flourish, as shown by their 1-0 Nations League win over Switzerland yesterday morning (Singapore time), but their respective routes to the top are now more complicated than their class of 2010 peers.
Both Adama Traore, 24, and Eric Garcia, 19, had to leave Barcelona to eventually force their way into the reckoning for Luis Enrique's side in their current Nations League campaign.
Traore yo-yoed between the top two tiers of English football for several years before finding a home away from home at Wolverhampton Wanderers, while Garcia saw his path to seniority nurtured at Manchester City under the meticulous eye of Pep Guardiola.
Now, the pair are finally reaping the benefits of taking the roads less travelled after making their long-awaited international debuts since the turn of the calendar year.
Their inclusions in Spain's latest squad is not simply an act of lip service from Enrique.
In total, he drafted 10 players plying their trade in the English Premier League while affording eight with playing time in last week's goalless friendly with neighbours Portugal.
Meanwhile, four England-based players featured against the Swiss. That number could conceivably have been higher were Liverpool midfielder Thiago Alcantara, another that had to break free from Barca to progress, not been diagnosed with Covid-19.
Enrique is attempting to steer his homeland in a different direction to the "tiki-taka" philosophy which took its cue from Guardiola's formerly all-conquering Barca team.
It is why the 50-year-old is already talking up Traore forming a blistering partnership with Ansu Fati as the hype around Barcelona's latest homegrown prospect swells.
Pairing the teenager with Wolves' turbocharged winger may appear sacrilegious especially in Catalonia, where praise for Enrique is still in incredibly short supply.
Yet, there is a method to his madness with next summer's European Championship requiring Spain to possess players that are capable of withstanding and utilising the street smarts that are second nature to those encountering it weekly in the EPL.
Better than most, Traore and Garcia fit that bill perfectly. They were not handpicked from La Liga's great and good for handsome transfer fees.
Reaching elite-level football was a journey which began, rather than ended, when they set foot outside of La Masia.
Enrique's lack of success with Barca's youth system did not prevent him calling up Fati to Spain's senior ranks, nor handing first-team debuts to more than 10 graduates during his three-year tenure at the club, despite only Carles Alena managing to stand the test of time.
An increased quota of representatives from the EPL, however, is a bellwether of how much La Masia's influence on the national side has been altered in the past decade.
Players like Cesc Fabregas and Pepe Reina would be considered par for the course in the current squad rather than the outliers they became in South Africa 2010 for testing themselves in English football instead of sitting on the sidelines in Barcelona's ranks.
Enrique's penchant for the unorthodox over aesthetic, both in tactics and personnel, might just stop Spain from being humiliated for a fourth major tournament running.