Welcome back to TalkBarca. Our topic for today is the Match Review between Barcelona vs Leganes. Barcelona restarted their La Liga campaign at the Camp Nou and ended up with another win. That is now 2/2 wins after football returned. We have 9 more games to go, and I am hopeful for a similar result in those fixtures as well. Barcelona ended the game 2-0, which is a fairly convincing score on paper. However, I felt as if we were just not at our best today. There are not many players who can claim to deliver world-class performances in this one.
Therefore, I am going to talk about where it went wrong, and what improvement is needed. We are going to face Sevilla up next who are competitive opponents and have a record of giving tough time to Barcelona. Therefore, it is so important to be well prepared before that fixture. Barcelona needs to work on the weaker aspects before the Sevilla game. Otherwise, things can be difficult for us. Overall, it was still a decent performance. There were a few players who surprised, rather pleased me with their performances. We have quite a bit to talk about today.
Barcelona had 2 goal scorers, namely Ansu Fati, and Lionel Messi in this home encounter against Leganes. Ansu Fati started the game and ended up scoring a beautiful goal. It was a great finish, leaving the keeper no chance. Ansu Fati’s goal also shows his great presence of mind in the game. Ansu was really alert and knew exactly where the pass was played. He then finished the ball into the back of the net despite having few defenders in front of him. This shows his great technical and mental ability. Messi converted from the penalty spot making it 2-0
BARCELONA VS LEGANES MATCH PREVIEW
Before I move ahead, I would like to talk about Real Madrid. We have once again taken that point’s gap to 5 points. This is because Madrid is playing after us, and this Barcelona result is going to put the pressure back on Madrid. Now, I would also like to accept the fact that Madrid had a great game against Eibar. The men in white completely dominated the Eibar team, and honestly, I don’t expect Zidane’s men to take any pressure of the point’s difference. Their confidence level is sky high, and they look dangerous.
Real Madrid also has its entire squad back. Injured players such as Hazard or Bale are back into the team, and all of them are back with better forms.
It is our team, FC Barcelona which is facing different issues. Therefore, we have to stay focused if we have to put our name on the La Liga title. Real Madrid currently looks like a storm chasing us to blow us away. We have to make sure we stay ahead of them so that we don’t have to fight for regaining the number 1 spot on the La Liga table.
BARCELONA VS LEGANES STARTING LINEUP
Quique Setien did not start with the exact Lineup that I was expecting. Ter Stegen started in goal. Gerrard Pique and Clement Lenglet started as the Center Backs. Junior Firpo played as the Left Back, and Roberto played as the Right back. Arthur Melo, Sergio Busquests, and Ivan Rakitic started in the midfield. Lionel Messi was also there. He started as the Right-winger. Ansu Fati started as Left-winger, whereas Griezmann started as number 9.
Vidal, Puig, Luis Suarez, and Umtiti were on the bench, and all played later.
Ter Stegen started in goal. It was an overall, decent performance from the German goalkeeper. However, I felt like it could be better. The German keeper looks confident, stacking up on clean sheets which are truly amazing in terms of providing himself confidence. He also did not commit any major mistake. The fact that I wanted to see a bit more from him is because he has set high standards for himself. If we conceded goals today, it would be a major defensive, and midfield error rather than that of Ter Stegen. I’ll talk about it in the next paragraph.
Gerrard Pique and Lenglet started as the Center Back duo. I think Lenglet was amazing. Gerrard was good as well. However, Lenglet was certainly the best defender on the pitch for me because he saved us in two crucial moments. This is the same thing I mentioned above. Barcelona was unable to press the opponents in the right way and ended up leaving spaces in the midfield and defense. As a result, Leganes was able to hit us up with two major counter attacks. Lenglet was there to act as the last man. He stopped a shot all alone.
Even Ter Stegen was beaten, but Lenglet showed determination and rushed back to the goal before the shot was taken. He was then able to clear the ball. However, it was also because the shot was hit right at him. If the player had aimed for the corners or somewhere near the top corner, Lenglet was not going to do anything about it. On another occasion, pretty soon after this one, Leganes was able to attack us again. Ter Stegen was beaten yet again, but the ball clipped the woodwork. Therefore, we escaped another chance despite our own mistake.
Junior Firpo and Roberto started as Left Back, and Right Back respectively. Roberto was also decent. However, Firpo was one who surprised me. I think he has worked hard on himself because he showed some real visible improvements. Junior Firpo was also able to link up well with Ansu Fati, and they both played like a great duo. This shows that the Chemistry between our youth players is just as amazing as our senior players. Overall, I think Junior Firpo deserves more playing time. However, Alba is the likely starter against Sevilla due to the end of his suspension.
I mentioned above that Arthur, Sergio Busquests, and Ivan Rakitic started in the midfield. I am not impressed by Arthur. He is well aware of the expectations we fans keep from him. We all consider him to be a world-class midfielder, and one a kind player. We were also really emphasizing about Arthur deserving a starting spot to show his brilliant abilities. He did get the starting role but failed to do much with it. He did not look threatening majority of the time, and overall, I am certainly not pleased with the performance.
Ivan Rakitic was pretty good on the other side. I saw more improvements from him, and he is showing that he still carries a passion for Barcelona. His gameplay and passion are showing that he is not interested to leave the club, and is ready to improve himself to keep playing. This was positive to see from him, and I hope that he keeps playing like this. I am a big Rakitic fan as well. Therefore, I am internally happy with the improvements he has shown. Frenkie missed this game due to the discomfort we talked about previously.
Vidal came on later in the game, and he was also pretty good. He played with zeal, and also made sure that he does not get booked. This was certainly needed because we could not afford bookings at that moment. Busquests was also pretty decent like he normally is. Puig came in later for the last 15 or so minutes of the game, and oh boy, did he not impress? Puig certainly sent a statement with his performance that he deserves more playing time on this level. He proved that he certainly has Barcelona quality, and he must be considered for other games.
Ansu Fati started on the left-wing. I mentioned Ansu’s goal above. He was really good today. I felt as if Ansu was carrying Barcelona’s attack in the first half. He showed amazing signs of confidence which he normally does. Fati played his normal game with occasional dribbles, some fancy tricks, and showed superb agility. Ansu Fati also scored a brilliant goal which gave Barcelona the 1-0 lead. Overall, I am impressed with the way 17-year-old winger performed for us. He also had great chemistry with Firpo which I already mentioned above in the defender’s section.
Lionel Messi played as the right-winger but kept on getting involved with his midfield as well. Lionel ended the game with a goal after the penalty he won. It was brilliant dribbling run from Messi to get past 3-4 players. He ended up getting fouled and was given the penalty after a long VAR check. Messi played full 90 minutes. Therefore, we have to see if he has enough fuel in him to play full games on such short notices. Overall, another great game from the king, and another goal. He is carrying Barcelona once again.
Griezmann started as the striker. I was not expecting Griezmann to start the game. However, he did and failed to impress again. I don’t know what’s up with Antoine Griezmann. He is dropping poor performances week after week, and this is not how it should be. Barcelona paid 120 million as his transfer fee, and these kind of inconsistent performances is not what 120 million gets you. Grizzy needs to put in more work and must start performing soon. Griezmann had his moment of the game but was unfortunate. We are going to discuss it next.
Suarez came in later on and had sufficient minutes in the game. Suarez replaced Ansu Fati and not Griezmann which was not the right thing according to me. Ansu got subbed after the first half, and that was unfair. However, Quique must have some plans up his sleeve. Maybe, he wanted to test Suarez, Griezmann, Messi trio ahead of Sevilla clash. However, Suarez did not impress much as well. He was not as involved as he was against Mallorca. Therefore, a lot is expected from him as well heading into that Sevilla game. Let’s see what happens when Barca faces Sevilla.
YELLOW CARDS AND GRIEZMANN’S UNLUCKY MOMENT
I want to talk about two more things before we conclude this article. Let’s just talk about the yellow cards first. I want to talk about our bookings, but also about Gerrard Pique. Pique got a pretty bad knock and was down with severe pain. Luckily, he did not pick any ligament or internal bone injury, as it was evident by blood coming out of his shin. However, my question is if this is going to affect his fitness? We need Pique against Sevilla, and do you guys think he’ll be fit enough?
Pique was replaced by Umtiti. Umtiti was fairly poor. Umtiti committed a harsh tackle at a moment it was not needed at all. This resulted in a pretty obvious yellow card booking, and Samuel is now suspended from the Sevilla clash. How can he be so careless? Umtiti needs to work harder on himself if he wants to feature more for the team. It was not only Umtiti, but we got a lot of yellow cards in the later minutes of the game. Umtiti, Puig, Lenglet, Firpo, and Rakitic picked up yellow cards.
What’s even funnier is that Leganes’s coach was sent off in the final seconds of the game.
Griezmann also had a moment in the game which ended with pretty bad luck. It was the brilliance of both, Nelson Semedo, and Griezmann which allowed Antoine to score. Semedo made a great run and played a brilliant pass to Griezmann. Grizzy put the ball in the back of the net with a great first-time finish, and that goal would be a huge confidence boost for him. However, he has to keep his head up now and look to perform in other games. Otherwise, he will be replaced.
Anyway, this is it from us guys. I hope you liked the content. Make sure to stay tuned for more Match Previews, Reviews, and other news related to Barcelona. I haven’t included Best Individual Performances like I normally do. The reason behind it is that I didn’t find too much spark from any player in this game. I already highlighted the good and bad about every player above.
Until the next time, Visca El Barca!