It wasn’t pretty, and at some point it looked like we’re on the verge of losing the game. But then, out of nowhere, Barcelona scored the leading goal vs Villarreal. Moreover, we were able to score the third goal and ‘kill’ the game. And on top of all that, the scorer was Coutinho. Xavi ‘Black Magic’ is a thing now?
Although it was far from a good game for our team, we went to sleep happy last night. Barcelona won a game while Villarreal were the better team. How many times we lost while playing better? So it felt refreshing.
- 3 games into the ‘Xavi Era’, and Barça are still unbeatable. Moreover, the win vs Villarreal is the first away win in the league this season. Furthermore, it’s the first time Barça wins 2 games in a row in the league this season. Quite amazing, but true.
- Ronald Araujo with another perfect game. Once again he won all duels without committing any foul. Furthermore, the Uruguayan had 7 ball recoveries, 2 interceptions and 3 tackles (most on the pitch). Araujo is really becoming one of the best defenders around. I hope that we will sign a new contract with him soon. And I also hope that he will stay fit.
- Frenkie de Jong did a terrific job last night. The Dutch was everywhere on the pitch, and even managed to score our first goal. Xavi already spoke about Frenkie’s importance for him. And it looks like these words got to him, and he’s doing great so far.
- Abde started the game well, and was like our ‘secret weapon’. But then, when Villarreal started dominating, he lost his rhythm. He didn’t do a good job defending, so subbing him out was a good decision.
- Memphis with a good goal last night. But what I liked more about him is the fact that he let Coutinho shoot the penalty. The Brazilian really needed that goal. I don’t want Coutinho to be part of our squad, as I think that paring ways would be the best for both parties. But as long as he’s here, it’s important to get his best version. Moreover, if we want other clubs to be interested in him, it’s important to get him back to good form.
- Once again, the team started the game very strong, but couldn’t convert the chances. Then, Barcelona lost their rhythm and Villarreal dominating for a large part of the match. Xavi needs to find solutions on that aspect.
- Eric Garcia played as a sort of Right-Back, and Mingueza came in to be a Left-Back. Both of them didn’t do well in those positions. Eric is not and will not be a right back. But I liked how at some point Xavi moved Araujo to the right side. As for Mingueza, there might be another reason for him entering instead of Alba. Balde wasn’t in the squad list, and maybe Dest isn’t 100% fit?
- VARcelona is back? Welcome back UEFAlona? Of course not. Yesterday I believe that the VAR didn’t work. It’s true that Pique touched the ball with his hand. But Parejo should have gotten a red card in the first minute as well. So Villarreal shouldn’t complain. But when other teams complain about the referees against us, that means we’re winning. And that’s great.
Xavi will have a whole week to prepare his full squad for the first time since becoming a coach. Next week we have Betis – A team that are just a little above us at the table. And then Bayern of course. So it’s great that Xavi has so much time to prepare the team.
Yesterday’s game wasn’t great, and we know it. But a winning team is a team that also wins when they’re not good.