Welcome back to TalkBarca. Our topic for today is the Match Review of Real Valladolid vs Barcelona. The match ended 0-1 and Barcelona went home with 3 lucky points again. I was expecting a better performance from my team. However, my expectations were greatly trashed. We got lucky against Espanyol and we got lucky against Valladolid as well. How many times are we going to depend on luck to win us matches? Are we going to progress to the Champions League depending on luck as well? This is not going to work like this. We need to reconsider our tactics.
It was one of those days again when Barcelona struggled to impose its dominance on a smaller team. Real Valladolid is also fighting to escape relegation. However, our players had to stay on their toes till the last second to ensure the 3 points. The season is pretty much towards its end and everyone is talking about the Champions League now. We are potentially facing Bayern in the Champions League and facing Napoli in the R16s. So this is how we are going to play against any or both of these teams? We’ll pray to get lucky.
This game ended with only one goal which was scored by Arturo Vidal. The goal was a good one. It was also set up really nicely by Lionel Messi. However, I feel like this game should have more goals. We needed to score at least 3 or 4 goals in this game. Both Griezmann and Suarez failed to impress today. This game displayed two completely different scenarios in the first and second half. The first half was too good and the second half was the opposite. Let’s talk about both of them separately and then talk about the FC Barcelona best players.
REAL VALLADOLID VS BARCELONA MATCH REVIEW
The first half had FC Barcelona written all over it. It was a beautiful display of football. I was really impressed with how our players reacted to the formation set up by Quique Setien. Barcelona dominated the possession and also pressed the opposition players. The first chance of the game was set up for Puig who managed to hit the target but did not beat the keeper. It did not take Lionel Messi long enough to give a cheekily chipped pass to set up Arturo Vidal who finished the ball strongly. 0-1.
Barcelona had the lead and it seemed as if the away trip to Villareal was about to repeat. However, right after Vidal’s goal, Griezmann was set up with an easy looking tap in which he was not able to score. Grizzy had no idea about where the ball was coming and ended up making little to no contact with the ball. These kinds of misses are not expected by a player like Antoine Griezmann. He has the great technical quality and his caliber does not allow him to miss these kinds of sitters. However, Barcelona continued to dominate the opposition team.
Semedo also missed a chance which was set up by Sergio Busquests. Messi had his shot on goal as well which looked as if would curl into the far post. However, Messi missed the goal by inches and the play continued. Valladolid also had their chance in the 37th minute. However, Ter Stegen made sure that he stays solid for his team and he made a great save. The players were really looking active at this point and I was hoping to see more goals in the second half. The first half ended with a scoreline of 1-0.
Griezmann was subbed off at the start of the second half. Luis Suarez came in place of him. The second half was started at a positive note. However, things began to turn around pretty soon. Puig was substituted at the 57th minute. I think he could have played more. It may be because we really like Puig these days and I might be biased right now. I am not going to challenge Setien’s decision over here. Setien made two changes at the 57th minute of the game. He took off Lenglet and Puig and brought in Araujo and Rakitic.
I think Valladolid’s keeper deserves a lot of praise. He was one of their main men. He made a lot of saves. Ter Stegen was also vital for us. Ter Stegen made another close save which was a header from Unal. Messi took a freekick in the second half. He managed to hit it on target but the opposition keeper made sure that he keeps it away from hitting the net. The performance of FC Barcelona was gradually declining. Fatigue was kicking into the players as well, but the overall gameplay was turning sluggish too. Valladolid was getting dominant.
Valladolid really took the game in their hands. They were gradually playing faster. Suarez and Pique were taken down in the box on different occasions. However, the penalty was awarded to none of them and even the VAR was not checked. Gerrard Pique smiled about it sarcastically. He made sure that he makes everyone realize what he meant with that smile. Ter Stegen was too good in the second half. He was alert and made sure that he lets no shot get past him. Barcelona failed to create any chances in this part of the game, and the game ended.
REAL VALLADOLID VS BARCELONA STARTING LINEUP
Ter Stegen started in goal. He was once again too good for us. Ter Stegen is just like a miracle to us. He is always there when no one is. He makes sure that he is always there to save our asses. I might be a bit harsh about this but I feel like this guy needs a break. When was the last time when our defense took the responsibility and let Ter Stegen not get involved much into the game? I think this has not happened for a single time this season.
Gerrard Pique and Clement Lenglet started as Center Backs. Nelson Semedo and Jordi Alba were the Right Back and Left Back respectively. I think Pique was great today. He once again showed that he is a true Catalan and he is always going to fight for the badge. I also think that Nelson Semedo deserves appreciation. Semedo is already a great defender, but he is getting good at offense. He is very fast and has incredible ball control and dribbling ability. He was the one who set Griezmann with an easy tap in. He’s getting better.
Semedo also provided 2 or 3 more vital cuts back passes. Furthermore, he was a part of the attack really often and was also present when his team needed him at the back. This shows that his fitness levels are really up to the point. I think Jordi Alba had a good game as well. Both of our full-backs were there for us when we needed them. It was a great sight to see. Araujo looked positive as well. I think he has a long way to go and is going to gain that authority gradually. Let’s see.
Puig, Busquests, and Roberto started in the midfield. Roberto was once again active. He was eager to involve in plays and wanted to have majority ball possession. Puig was brilliant as well. He is developing himself into a fine player. I think Puig can have the main role in our midfield by the next season. However, I still crave to see the trio of Puig, Busquests, and Rakitic to start in the midfield. The fourth midfielder was Arturo Vidal who is the only scorer of this game and the King of the game as well. Arturo showed positivity today.
Lionel Messi and Griezmann were the two attackers upfront. However, Messi played more within the midfield which he normally likes to do. Griezmann looked fresh. However, he should have put that chance away. He was really good in the previous two games and I hope that this slightly not good performance does not put him on the bench again. He does not deserve not to start the other games. Luis Suarez came in place of him and he also did not impress a lot. Messi played his part nicely and ended up with the 20th assist of the season.
I think this is not a satisfactory result from FC Barcelona. We need to do better especially against the smaller teams. This is why I am so uncertain about the Champions League. You cannot always depend on luck when you are facing mighty giants from Europe in the Champions League. Setien said that he was positive heading into that tournament. However, I have my doubts and I hope Setien proves me wrong.
Anyway, this is it from us guys. I hope you liked the Match Review. For more Previews, Reviews, and other news, stay tuned.
Until the next time, VISCA EL BARCA!