Welcome back to TalkBarca. Today, we will be taking a look at Barcelona vs Villarreal Match Review. Yes, we did it again. Barcelona showed once again how strong we are at home. It was an electrifying game and absolutely a thriller for the fans. It was also the 67th birthday for our stadium, Camp Nou and a win on its birthday was a perfect present.
This game had a lot of positives which are going to discuss later in detail. On the contrary, there are a few negatives that still haunt many fans. We managed to clinch a 2-1 victory over the Yellow Submarine. However, it’s wasn’t like we were far better than Villarreal. If we forget about the goals for a moment, we would see that it was quite an even match. We didn’t enjoy as much possession of the ball as our style of play demands.
Lionel Messi made his way back to the Starting XI against Villarreal and provided an amazing assist to Griezmann for the opening goal of the game. Arthur scored a long-range goal with thunderbolt stike. The ball went in the net like a rocket and the goalkeeper didn’t get any chance. Santi Cazorla scored almost a similar long-ranged goal for Villarreal to reduce the deficient.
Well, that was the overview of the game. Now, let’s dig deeper into the action and have look at in-depth Match Review of Barcelona vs Villarreal. Let’s do this!
BARCELONA VS VILLARREAL MATCH REVIEW
The starting lineup in Barcelona vs Villarreal was not convincing. It was good to see Rakitic out of the squad. As we have discussed in previous articles, we don’t need 3-4 midfielders on the bench. One of Rakitic and Vidal should not be included in the squad. Also, I was really happy to see Junior Firpo in the Starting XI. I feared that Valverde may outcaste him after his previous performance.
The defensive line was good. However, Valverde still got his Starting XI wrong. He messed up in the midfield and attack. I mean, why would you start Roberto in the midfield when you have De jong? Also, how many times do we have to say that Griezmann as a winger does not perform well? Even a layman can see this, why does Valverde not understand it?
Ter Stegen started as the goalkeeper. This game was another good outing for the German keeper. He made a few good saves and also stepped out of the box to sweep out the ball on a serious counter attack. The only complain from MATS tonight was the goal we conceded. It was a good effort from Santi Cazorla from long range and flew past the hands of the goalkeeper into the net.
This was a tricky shot as the ball moved in the air and MATS could not judge it completely. Personally, I think that Ter Stegen should have saved it. He has set such high standards for himself and these standards demand him to make a save like this. Anyways, I am not going to criticize him as he has been one of the best players for Barca and he has saved us countless times.
Pique and Lenglet are our primary center back who play in almost all our games. Both center backs had a good dominating game tonight. I, somewhere felt that Lenglet was better than Pique. However, Pique’s performance was on point as well.
Pique also had to play safer than he normally does because a yellow card could have suspended him from the next fixture. He kept his composure and played the game without any booking.
Left Back and Right Back:
Junior Firpo played as a left back. His performance was way better than what he saw in the previous fixture. I am 100% certain that the Firpo’s display tonight would have convinced everyone that he can be trusted with on the left side. Semedo played as Right back. He brought a lot of physical aspect into his game which is something positive to take. He also made a few forward runs and combined with Dembele in the second half.
Sergio Busquests started as holding midfielder. Arthur played on the left mid and Roberto on the right. For me, this is not a good midfield. Obviously, Busquets and Arthur are the perfect options for Barca in the mid, however, I simply don’t understand why Roberto was included. It should have been De Jong instead of Roberto. Our midfield with Roberto was a little bit shaky but it did the job.
Roberto was very good in terms of attacking. However, he struggled in the defensive aspects of the game. He made a few harsh tackles and also ended up getting a yellow card. Even after the yellow card, he had the approach which the same aggression which could have costed us as a red card. Therefore, he needs to be more careful when to be aggressive and when technical. Overall, it was an average performance from Roberto.
Antoine Griezmann started on the left-wing whereas Messi started on the right. This is somewhere not acceptable as Griezmann is not a winger and he is simply wasted if not used as a striker. However, Grizzy’s performance was way better today. Dembele came in during the second half after an injury to Lionel Messi. Messi’s injury is a huge blow for Cules and we hope that it’s nothing serious. However, Dembele is back in the squad to fill in the shoes of Messi if necessary.
Luis Suarez started as a striker. Again, I think that Suarez is no longer a starter. Suarez did not even perform the way he should have. Again, he is sluggish and out of form. Dembele on the left, Messi on the right and Griezmann in the middle would have been a great attacking trio. Ansu Fati came in to replace Suarez in the final 15 minutes of the game and lit things up in Barcelona attack. With this substitution, Griezmann moved to striking position and Fati Played on the left wing.
Junior Firpo impressed today. He played nowhere like he did in the previous fixture. He made a lot of forward runs, involved in the attack and also made great tackles. Even when Villarreal was playing good possession football, Junior did not lose his nerve and was one of the best performers on the pitch.
Sergio Busquests also had a very dominating game. He dropped down between Pique and Lenglet which opened a window for our full backs to join the attack. At times, it looked as if Barcelona were playing with back 3. Furthermore, his performance in midfield was also vivid today. He created a chance for Messi in the start of the first half with his usual lob ball. He was one of the best players on the pitch.
Arthur is a lifeline to our midfield. He covered the pitch with ease. He helped his defense and worked a lot to maintain possession. Arthur’s dominance was evident on the pitch. Also, he scored a screamer. He took a shot from long distance and what a great goal that was. It hit the back of the net like a rocket. Arthur is a perfect starter for us and he should be the ultimate starter.
Dembele really performed well. Coming back from an injury, nothing significant was expected from him. However, his performance was very good. He troubled the defenders, made dribbles and delivered crosses. Dembele’s fitness was on point. This shows that he is 100% recovered and can start for us very soon
Dembele made 3 crucial goal scoring chances but our forwards could not make the most of those chances. Yes, he lost the ball a few times, but it’s normal for someone playing in a wide role. He didn’t give away possession cheaply. You have to take the risk of losing the ball if you want to create a chance out of nothing. He was magical tonight and I expect him to get even better.
Are we not tired yet of watching Ansu Fati playing quality football, again and again, every week? Fati plays with so much dominance as if he was a decade old player for FC Barcelona. He made a lot of cut-ins, through passes, deep runs, and clinical crosses during the game.
Fati was also troubling the defenders with his movement on and off the ball. He nearly won us a penalty that was ruled out by VAR. For me, it was a penalty. There was clear contact with the defender and it should have been given as a penalty. However, we can’t complain about it and we won the game which matters the most.
Griezmann is not a winger as we have discussed time and time again. He scored a great header during the early moments of the game. The header he scored was one of the best goals of the season because it was scored from a very tight angle.
Furthermore, when Ansu subbed in and Griezmann shifted to the strike, his performance was very better. This shows how much lethal he is playing as a forward compared to a winger.
So, that was all for Barcelona vs Villarreal Match Review. We won 3 points at home on the 67th birthday of Camp Nou. What are your thoughts about this performance? What changes in lineup would you prefer? Let us know in the comments down below. Until next time, Visca El Barca!