Barca 5-0 AD Ceuta: Match Analysis

Barca 5-0 AD Ceuta: Match Analysis

Barca headed into their second Copa Del Rey matchup against the third division side AD Ceuta, and gathered a thumping win at their home, scoring five goals and keeping a clean sheet.

Xavi started with a frontline of Raphinha, Lewandowski, and Ferran Torres. The decision to start the Polish marksman was made considering his unavailability in upcoming league games because of the 3-match suspension.

The Midfield was heavily rotated, as the coach chose a seldom-played trio of Franck Kessie, Sergi Roberto, and young Pablo Torre, who is currently registered with the B team. The backline too was heavily rotated considering the easy opposition, with Marcos Alonso and Eric Garcia starting as the center backs with Hector Bellerin and Jordi Alba on the right and left defensive flanks, respectively.

The match started on a cagey note, with Barca conceding better chances than they created, with the best chance for the third-division opponents being the side-netted header. But the team grew in the match slowly and steadily. Raphinha scored the opener and the match proceeded to the half-time break with Barcelona having a one-goal advantage.

Xavi Hernandez then brought on Gavi to replace Pablo Torre in the second half, and the substitution changed the game completely, as Barca looked better in almost every department given the requirements of the game. The golden boy was exactly what was needed, and the Catalan club scored 4 more goals in the second set of 45 minutes. Other substitutions included Ansu Fati, Angel Alarcon, and Andreas Christensen.

Player Analysis:

Hector Bellerin:

A decent performance from the ex-Arsenal player, who was good in linking up offensively. Ignoring a few shakey instances, he grew in the game defensively as well. But this game certainly showcased the need to sign a reliable right-back.

Jordi Alba:

A Decent game from the veteran, as he was good offensively barring the final delivery, and could have done better in his final passes which are usually optimum, however, that accounts for the compactness maintained by the opponents.

Eric Garcia:

By far our best center-back on the ball, the academy graduate showcased why he is one of the best in the world in terms of ball progression. He was crucial in the build-up and even assisted the 5th goal. If he develops his physical aspect of the game, he definitely could be a complete defender.

Marcos Alonso:

A decent shift from the summer arrival as well, not much involvement given the game’s requirements, but was available at the right positions when needed.

Franck Kessie:

Surrounded by transfer rumors, possibly linking the Ivorian with a swap deal including Marcelo Brozovic, the midfielder proved he has something to offer. Make no mistakes, he was not good at all in the first half, but he grew in the game and had a stupendous second half. He scored one goal and assisted two.

Sergio Roberto:

Not much involvement from the captain of the match for the Catalan club, an average performance, maybe due to the fact that the squad was heavily rotated.

Pablo Torre:

A lackluster performance from the youngster, majorly due to the fact that all of the opponents were behind the ball to defend their goalpost.

Raphinha:

Man of the match performance from the Brazilian, who is on his way to redeeming himself after having a subpar start to his Barcelona career. Opened the deadlock with an absolute belter.

Ferran Torres:

A disjointed performance from the Spaniard. He had a few attempts on goal, but that’s it. He clearly looks demotivated.

Robert Lewandowski:

Another vintage performance from the striker, scoring a Brace in the match. Was absent in the first half of the match, but that was the case for the whole team.

Gavi:

His contribution might go unnoticed, but he was the vital cog for the midfield. Subbing him in was a masterstroke from the coach.

Ansu Fati:

Looked more threatening than ever, scored a wonderful goal, and had good attempts as well which may serve him as a confidence booster, as he looks to find his previous level.

Angel Alarcon:

A first-team debut for the youngster, but didn’t see much possession. Hopefully, Xavi uses him more in the upcoming fixtures.

Sergio Busquets:

A sound, short-shift from the Barcelona legend. Being subbed on at the later stages of the game, he made sure that the clean sheet is maintained.

Iñaki Peña:

A resounding shift from the youngster after a below-par showing against Intercity. Wasn’t much tested by Ceuta, so it will be interesting to see how he fares against tougher opposition.

All in all, it was a nervy match for the Culers initially, but the team found the rhythm as the match progressed. This rests majorly on the fact that heavy rotations were made, but the fringe players have to step up if they ever want to challenge the regular starters in the future.

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