FC Barcelona fell to Shakhtar Donetsk last night in what was their first defeat in the UEFA Champions League this season. The Catalans were unable to come back from the one-goal deficit that they faced in the first half, and the forward line particularly looked in need of inspiration that did not come till the final whistle.
As already reported here, Xavi believes that his team is suffering from a mental block that kept them from performing to their best level against the Ukrainians.
Barcelona is emotionally impacted
The rest of the squad also sees the lackluster performances in their own ways, but according to SPORT, there are two main perspectives coming out of the dressing room.
Firstly, the squad admits that the club’s performances in the last two matches have emotionally impacted the group. The team is not enjoying itself on the pitch, and the individuals are not as willing to try out new things as they were previously.
Thus, a large part of the squad believes that the international break comes up at a good time. Xavi’s team will have to play a good game against Alaves, and then take the international break to reflect on the status of his team. The squad itself will get an opportunity to renew and refresh itself in a changed atmosphere.
Things are not that bad in reality
The second perspective is brighter, as the squad believes while the spirits of the team are low, the actual position on the points table is not as drastic. The team is still only two points behind Real Madrid in La Liga, and is still atop their group stage table in Champions League.
Last time, the squad was also demoralized when they crashed out of the Champions League after the group stage. Still, they went on to win the league. This time, things are definitely better, and there is everything to hope that things will change for the better in coming matches.