In yesterday’s clash opposing Barcelona to Osasuna, the game ended 1-2 in favour of ‘Los Rojillos’ following a last gasp goal by Morales at the 90+4’. Madrid are now champions, having won against Villarreal.
What was taken for granted has been taken away. A majority of the culés complained about ‘only’ winning La Liga the past season. Today, Culés wakes up to La Liga taken away and given to archrivals Real Madrid. The problem doesn’t lie solely on Sétien. Or on Sarabia. Or on the players. Instead, it’s a much deeper problem. Results covered many of the problems in Valverde’s era. For Sétien, it’s without results. Without results, the real face of the current FC Barcelona is clear: It is not the flashy and glorious Barcelona under Pep & Laporta, but a much darker reality. The culés are now sure they will go trophyless, yesterday’s game failing to provide confidence for the upcoming Champions League clash against Napoli next month.
Looking bad from the start
The game started badly. Whilst we were dominant on the ball, there were far too little chances . Barcelona conceded counter-attacks on the right wing due to complacency, leaving Semedo in unfavourable 1v2 situations. Early enough, the inevitable happened. Semedo overworked, the cross incoming, goal. After 15 minutes, Arnaiz stunned Barcelona’s defense with a banger. Surrounded by our defenders, Arnaiz still scored. Barcelona had no choice but to score if they wanted to avoid the first loss in a while in the Camp Nou. Around the 20’, Barcelona started playing fluidly. Culés thought chances were coming. Whilst Barcelona tried to break Osasuna’s tough lines, it’s with very rare occasions Barcelona managed to break through. A clear lack of width despite Ansu’s presence didn’t help either. On the ball, the Catalans were too predictable and couldn’t break the block properly.
75 % possession..for what? On the ball, we dominated. But rare were the chances, rarely clear cut. And once the Catalans lost possession,(64 times in the first half), they were unable to recover the ball quickly enough. The wings, just like against Villarreal, were Barcelona’s weak spot. Threats continued coming, despite Piqué’s brilliance. Despite all the effort, Barcelona had been too uncreative and finished the first half-time 0-1 down against Osasuna. Changes were needed.
Eventually, Sétien subbed a few players on. Semedo came off, Suarez on, Vidal came on, and later, Busquets, Alba & Frenkie came on as well. Nonetheless, nothing seemed to affect Barcelona’s play. Whether it was a 3-4-3 or a 3-5-2 doesn’t matter. An isolated Braithwaite, a Messi who was far too little involved by staying too wide didn’t help either. Eventually, Barcelona broke the deadlock following Messi’s free-kick in the 62’.
Fail to win
Still, Barcelona needed to play well in order to regain the confidence lost in the matches. It never happened. Yellow cards followed: Piqué earns the suspension, just like Braithwaite & Firpo. Nothing went well, despite Ansu & Riqui’s encouraging display. For Barcelona was far too clueless to appear to be threatening. What we saw was an inoffensive Barça. Finally, in the very last minute, the deadlock was broken. By Osasuna, who scored in the last minute to make it 1-2, the final nail in the coffin.
Even more worrying was the post-match interviews. Sétien admitted ‘I’m hoping to still be manager for the UCL’, whilst Messi fired shots at the Cantabrian once again: ‘I’ve said it before, this is not sufficient for the UCL, nor for the league. We have been bad since January’. A clear hint to his preference towards Valverde and dissatisfaction with Sétien.
Now, Madrid are champions. They frankly deserve it. Zidane’s men won all the game post-covid. Meanwhile, Barcelona were sloppy throughout the season. The trophyless season is coming closer everyday. A club cannot function when players clash against the coaching staff & the board – and vice versa. No one trusts no one, how can one expect the club to win anything? There are serious problems and it’s been the case for a while-only was it under the surface when results were still there. Congratulations to Madrid for the 34th La Liga.