opinions | 2016-04-02
Rating the Barcelona players in the defeat vs Real Madrid
Criticism is warranted in what was Barcelona's worst performance so far into 2016
Claudio Bravo (6): For majority of the match he didn’t have much to do as Real Madrid allowed us to have possession whilst they sat back. Once again his distribution was inconsistent. The match became more busy for him in the second half, Barcelona were unable to transition out from the back properly, and with poor performances from Alba and Alves it allowed Real Madrid to have goalscoring chances. Not much could have been done for both of the goals in all honesty.
Dani Alves (4.5): Started the game pretty well and combined with the rest of the team going forward. Didn’t really have trouble keeping Ronaldo quiet at the start. Almost scored at the end of the first half with a great shot from the edge of the box. In the second half, as Barça lost control of the game, he started losing possession often and found it hard to stop Madrid’s players down the right side. Disappointing performance from the Brazilian.
Gerard Piqué (7): Started strongly, but this was partially due to the fact that Real Madrid didn’t press. Stopped their attacks in the first half with ease but found it harder in the second half to deal with them, but still comfortable to an extent. Well taken goal, lost his marker very easily and headed the ball home. Our best defender today by some distance and arguably our best player.
Javier Mascherano (6): Solid, one of Barça’s best players on the pitch. Just like the rest of the team, didn’t have trouble in the first half while Barça controlled the game. Received a yellow card in 29th minute. Struggled like the rest as we lost control. Couldn’t really do much in both goals and did well to stop their attacking players on the counter attacks when he could. Masche seems back, but unfortunately the match ended up in disappointment.
Jordi Alba (4): The worst on the pitch today, as his poor form continues. Poor decisions when going forward, misplacing passes and didn’t do much to create down the left side. Things were worse in the second half, as he had trouble stopping Bale in counter attacks. One of his bad passes eventually led to Benzema’s equalizer. Yet another bad game for him, in what is now a worrying sign for the rest of the season as Barça doesn’t have a proper replacement on his position.
Sergio Busquets (6.5): One of Barça’s best. It was a typical Busquets performance, supported his teammates and swiftly passed the ball throughout the game. Stopped Real Madrid from creating on the midfield, as they weren’t really dangerous until Rakitic was subbed off. Lost control as the rest of the team was all over the place.
Ivan Rakitić (7): Started the game brightly by convincingly attacking and passing, as well as winning the ball back. Pressed and his work was noticeable in defensive phase, as Real Madrid struggled to keep possession. Almost got himself on the scoresheet in the first half with a great shot. Well taken corner kick to find Piqué in the box for the 1-0. Couldn’t keep up as he tired and Luis Enrique decided to sub him off for Arda in the 74th minute. At that point, Barça totally lost control of the game, as the Turkish international didn’t do much in Rakitić’s role.
Andres Iniesta (5.5): Not one of his best matches, Alba and Neymar also having an off day hindered his influence on the game. As Real Madrid got more into the game, Iniesta started to run out of ideas. It must be noted that he was coming back from a knock, but that wasn’t the main reason for the subpar performance. Andres’s dribbling and passing was of a high standard but suffered in the final third due to the compactness of Real Madrid.
Lionel Messi (5.5): Created decent chances in the first half, but by his standards it was a quiet match, the fact he played centrally didn’t help at all. He was easily marked and let Marcelo free of worries on the left. Had some nice link up plays with Iniesta, but wasn’t effective as he would’ve been if he had played wide.
Luis Suárez (5): Disappointing. The only positive aspect was his work-rate, which was stunning as usual, but his decision making and passing was quite poor. Squandered a great chance in the first half after Neymar’s pass, an easy tap-in, but missed the ball. Much of the same in the second half, couldn’t do much after Barça lost control. On top of that, received his 5th yellow and will miss an important match against Real Sociedad at Anoeta next week. The worst player in Barça’s forward line today.
Neymar (5): Got involved a fair amount early on but his decision making was as dire as Suárez. Held onto the ball for too long or picked the wrong pass. Normally, he has the better of Carvajal but today it was the other way around. The Brazilian didn't cover Alba and Marcelo was free on the left flank with Bale and even Carvajal. Big improvement needed from Neymar who is struggling to replicate his early season form but, but he seems to be getting better.
Arda Turan: Replaced Rakitić in the 74th minute, Arda didn’t do much. Couldn’t repeat what Rakitić was doing defensively, and didn't offer anything when attacking. Despite that, he had a chance to score at the end, but his shot was blocked.
Anything wrong? Send your correction.
WRITTEN BY: Josip
23 years old, born in Split, Croatia. Football fanatic and a die-hard Barça fan. Currently studying tourism and communication.
WRITTEN BY: Sulaiman
Sulaiman is a Barcelona fan since 2005. He loves discussing anything related to the club. Sulaiman is currently studying Accounting and Finance and has a keen interest in Statistics.