Dest squandered a clear chance before Memphis facilitated Alaba’s goal, which Madrid kept until the end
An offensive mistake by Dest and a defensive one of Memphis (the world upside down) they headed to Barça towards defeat. In a match like the classic and against a rival like him Madrid, reliability is crucial, and this Barça is the living example of irregularity. It is as unfair to personalize defeats as it is easy to summarize them in two sets during a 97-minute game, but they marked the drift of the outcome.
Although more things happened, of course, in a duel that also draws a tendency to atony, devoid of the footballers with the greatest personality. Very few things left the confrontation, none conclusive: the messianic Ansu Fati did not perform any miracles, and Benzema subtracted points for the Ballon d’Or. Gavi was overwhelmed by the event and Kroos nor did he show up. Neither goalkeeper stopped.
Koeman adds another match without beating Madrid and Ancelotti points to his first victory at the Camp Nou. Statistics, pure entertainment. The coaches had no influence whatsoever with their tactical interventions. To which the ball was moved, everything was between the feet and the head of the footballers, and the Catalans condemned Koeman to be the first Barça coach, since 1936, to chain three defeats. No direct blame on the scoreboard. This is from the artists. The team, as a whole, has shown signs of improvement after the restart.
Adept at 4-3-3
Ancelotti has become a fan of 4-3-3, the system Koeman abandons from time to time. Both teams were outlined the same, dividing themselves into individual duels, but it was Barça who moved pieces to unusual places: Eric on the right and Piqué on the left, Gavi on the right and Frenkie de Jong on the left, with Ansu at nine and Memphis back to the extreme. Gavi, the youngest debutant of the last 80 years, had the added task of pressuring housemiro, the white midfielder, and not Kroos, who was the closest.
In those individual duels, half the outcome gravitated, in the same way that the success in the crucial plays was essential. The first aspect is more or less equalized – except for the notorious difference between Vinicius and Mingueza, little exploited by Madrid for what could have been – decided the clairvoyance of David Alaba, a formidable defender turned into a devastating striker. Thanks to Barça’s consent, since he left his area when he stole a ball from Memphis until he stopped in the other to finish off crossed, alone and happy as ever.
Alaba’s ambition was accompanied by the folly of Memphis. He began to chase his peer with loss, feeling bound by the evidence of his mistake, clear to everyone’s eyes. But he followed him for a while: until he got tired, until he saw an imaginary border or until he trusted that the Austrian could fail as Dest had failed, total, they are both defenses. But Alaba has a lot of shots stuck out there, and one of the virtues for which Madrid signed him to fill the void of Ramos is hitting the ball.
Cobwebs in the arsenal
The top scorer in the league was helped by a defender, that’s how complete his arsenal is. Quite the opposite of Barça. In the Camp Nou armory there are gaps in the shelves and cobwebs in the corners, but enough gunpowder to mark. Also to Madrid, which is not a prodigy of solvency. And, of course, Barça has enough football to beat the worst rival, which is making it complex game by game until adding five in a row without losing. The dynamics have changed: Madrid does not evolve, while Barça regresses.
As Koeman usually reacts according to the scoreboard and always reacts to errors, I make decisions at half-time that he taught when he sent Coutinho to warm up earlier. Withdrew Mingueza – He did a favor for the torture that was guessed with Vinicius – delaying Dest to the punishment of pairing up with the Brazilian. The Dutchman made another mistake, but he immediately repaired it and then gave the center of the goal. Ansu Fati went on to stay as a center forward and Memphis was sent to the left thinking corner.
Agüero’s first goal
The momentum of the restart was brief, barely five minutes. The Barça deflated, tender as it is, lacking a strong leadership in the field, due to the lack of faith. It is staying loser face and the presence of a Madrid that was so calm, without any suffering, made him even more complex. The whites, however, did not manage to close the marker and left it to chance that a center to the area was hunted by an Agüero or Luke de Young. In the absence of aim, it was agreed to waste time to reduce the danger.
Koeman was putting in forwards, as he disordered the team with so much desperate movement and tweaking the system according to the player who entered. Forwards appeared and midfielders disappeared to give them a game. With the game displaced until a flower blossomed in the area, Lucas Vázquez completed a career for Asensio and Agüero scored his first goal, purely testimonial to mitigate the disappointment of the fans that almost filled the Camp Nou.
BARCELONA: Ter Stegen (5); Mingueza (4), Eric (7), Piqué (6), Alba (6); Gavi (5), Busquets (6), F. de Jong (4); Dest (4) Ansu Fati (6), Memphis (4).
Technical: Ronald Koeman (6).
Changes: Coutinho (6) de Mingueza (m. 46); Agüero (6) from Ansu Fati (d. 73); Sergi Roberto (sc) by F. de Jong (d. 77); L. de Jong (sc) by Gavi (m. 85).
REAL MADRID: Courtois (6); Lucas V. (5), Militao (6), Alaba (8), Mendy (5); Modric (7), Casemiro (6), Kroos (5); Rodrygo (4), Benzema (4), Vinicius (6).
Technical: Carlo Ancelotti (6).
Changes: Valverde (sc) by Rodrygo (v. 71); Asensio (sc) de Vinicius (d. 87); Carvajal (sc) by Valverde (d. 90).
Goals: 0-1 (m. 31), Álava; 0-2 (m. 93), Lucas V .; 1-2 (m. 96), Agüero.
Referee: Sánchez Martínez (5), Murcian.
Cards: Piqué (m. 57), Mendy (m. 79).
Eddie is an Australian news reporter with over 9 years in the industry and has published on Forbes and tech crunch.