Welcome to TalkBarca. Our topic for today is the Match Review of Ibiza vs FC Barcelona in Copa Del Rey. The match has ended in our favor and Barcelona have qualified to the Round of 16 by winning 1-2 away from home. This is Quique Setien’s second game and 2nd victory as well. This outing to Ibiza is one of the most awful away fixtures I have ever seen in my entire life. Yes, it wasn’t just worst fixture of this season but the worst possible fixture of my life.
A lot of odds stacked against us. Firstly, the lighting was poor. How can this lighting be used in a professional football match? We were unable to clearly see the game despite the fact that such high technology methods and latest cameras are used to telecast the games. Imagine how tough it was for our players to survive 90 minutes on that ground. Furthermore, the ground was far poor from just being unfavorable. We mentioned in the preview that it was going to be an Artificial Grass pitch. Well, it was extremely unlikely for us and the pitch was in poor condition.
Critics have said that both teams were playing on the same surface. Therefore, there must not be any sympathy or advantage given to FC Barcelona. However, that was Ibiza’s home ground and they are extremely used to these conditions. Barcelona is used to playing on bigger and certainly far superior quality surfaces than this. Anyways, we managed to grab the win courtesy of a late goal from Antoine Griezmann. The game was poor, and nothing seemed to go our way. Despite that, we kept our dignity intact and progressed to the round of 16. With that being said, let’s start our Match Review of Ibiza vs Barcelona.
IBIZA VS BARCELONA MATCH REVIEW
Our boys have certainly saved Quique from allegations and accuses. However, before we proceed, I would like to make one thing clear to all. This is Quique’s first season in charge, and it is too soon to judge whether he is the right guy for our system or not. I believe that we must wait until the end of the season and check if he can match exactly to our philosophy or not. Therefore, counting every game, and criticizing every touch of every player is not the right thing to do.
He has lead our side to play amazing football once again. We had more than 75% possession, and this shows that we absolutely dominated Ibiza with the ball. We conceded the first goal, and despite that our young players did not lose hope and made a comeback as a solid unit. This squad for the Copa Del Rey clash had a mixture of young talents and experienced players. Overall, we saw a beautiful combination of football and showed everyone how to dominate as a team. Only if the conditions had favored us a little more, the end result would have been way better.
Furthermore, Ibiza committed 22 fouls against us. This explains how haunting our side was for their defenders. Overall, I am happy with the performance. As a matter of fact, I am just as positive as I was when Quique stepped in. It’s too soon to judge him, and why even judge him when we have won games and won really convincingly? Griezmann clicked in his central and preferred position. Our young players like Puig, Semedo, Firpo got their playing time. Our team looks better than ever, and we are the favorites to win the Copa Del Rey. So, let’s take a look at the starting lineups for the Ibiza vs Barcelona fixture.
Neto started in goal. This was expected, and despite the fact he conceded one goal, I think that Neto did a good job in the goal. He got injured which has worried me the most. I was hoping that we do not pick up an injury in this knockout clash, but things did not end up the way I wanted. Neto has a confirmed ankle sprain, and although this is not a very big injury, I still do not know how much time he is going to spend out of training. Anyways, he did a great job and I hope he comes back soon.
Quique surprised me with his defensive choices. I am not talking about the players he chose, instead, I am referring to the numbers. To my surprise, he continued with only one true center back. Quique has set his intentions clear and put his intentions right on the table. He wants attacking football, he is known for attacking football, and Barcelona is surely going to play attacking football. Firpo, Lenglet, and Roberto started as our defenders in the back-3. This trio did a pretty decent job.
Quique operated with a set of 5 midfielders. This counted 1 CDM who was the superbly talented, Frenkie De Jong. Riqui Puig and Ivan Rakitic started in the central midfield role. Meanwhile, Ansu Fati and Nelson Semedo played as wide midfielders. We don’t often see Semedo in that role, do we? Well, that’s exactly why he struggled to get going. To be honest, I think, Setien should have swapped Semedo with Roberto.
Rakitic also had a great game. Quique is using these players to constantly check their limits and see if they can fully understand our style of play or not. Ansu Fati also played brilliantly. He did not end on the scoresheet, but he had a great performance. Furthermore, Puig suffered a lot under those unfavorable conditions. Yet, he delivered. The poor surface did not stop the young talent from dominating the opposition. This is what we really want for us to happen from now.
Antoine Griezmann and Perez played upfront as strikers. Despite the fact that Griezmann was not much involved in the game, he rescued our side from going into the extra time. He 2 goals on the night and lead his team to victory.
Perez also played the role of a good supporting hand. Perez made sure that he was there to fill in any loophole left by Griezmann. Jordi Alba came in to replace Carles Perez later in the game. He played as if playing CF is really natural to him. As a matter of fact, Jordi Alba assisted our late winning goal. This shows that we are certainly not aware of what to expect under Setien. I am excited!
BEST INDIVIDUAL PERFORMANCES:
Frankie De Jong absolutely bossed the midfield. De Jong did what he does best. He dominated the opposition with unpredictable movement and lethal passes. He also provided an assist to Griezmann which shows that he was involved in our equalizing goal as well. I think Quique has seen what he needed to see in Frenkie De Jong. That is pure class and we are certainly going to see an even better version of De Jong under Setien.
Anyway, guys, this is it for the Match Review of Ibiza vs Barcelona. I hope you like our Match Review. What do you think about our performance? Did we play well? Let us know your thoughts in the comments section. Stay tuned for more amazing content. Until next time, Visca El Barca!