In spite of a rather disappointing performance on the table last night, Barcelona continues their unbeaten run in the league and extends their winning streak to 6 with a narrow, 1-0 victory over a surprising Mallorca side. Barca News Network brings you 4 key talking points following the 7th game week of the season.
1. A rather underwhelming night for the Blaugranas
For the first time in the new season, Barcelona was bettered in xG by the opposition, and it was not Bayern München or Sevilla, it was Real Mallorca. The compact 5-4-1 defensive shape of the Los Pirates posed difficulties for the Blaugranas to break through, and also, this was the first time in the season when we failed to accumulate at least 1 xG.
On the other hand, Javier Aguirre’s crew made things hot for our defense a few times, but thankfully, they failed to turn them into goals. Although both Christensen and Piqué produced a decent performance individually, sometimes it was shaky as a collective, but either the deficiency of the Balearian forwards or Marc-André ter Stegen’s class kept the net silent.
2. Ter Stegen shining bright again
Speaking about the German wall, it’s time to give him the credit he deserves. After an underwhelming last season, his redemption is well underway in the current campaign. Currently, he has the most clean sheets in the league, namely 6 out of the total 7 games played, and the least amount of goals conceded (1) among all the top 5 leagues.
And he was there to the rescue yesterday night too, he stepped up and saved the day when really mattered. The German shot-stopper made 3 saves, including a superhuman reflex to keep Jaume Costa’s sitter out of goal, and managed to neutralize a total amount of 0.51 PSxG faced. With that, Barça’s no.1 continues his spectacular form, and recently, he has gone over 500 minutes without conceding. More than impressive.
3. Lewandowski continues to amaze
Week in and week out, the Pole proves why he is still one of the best in the world. At 34 years of age, Lewandowski is playing in the form of his life, and his 12 goals in 9 games are a testament to that. But it would be pejorative to name him just a great finisher as he is much more complete than that.
Yesterday, he showed it to us again, and I believe that we are really blessed to see him play in the shirt of our beloved club. His goal summed up perfectly the way he plays: dropped deep to link up and combine with Ansu, and then he smartly attacks the space behind the fullback. Receives and accelerates, then tricks his defender, turns, and places a pinpoint finish into the bottom far corner. Simply sensational.
4. Another record to Xavi’s name
With this victory, Xavi’s Barcelona has now the longest unbeaten streak away from home in La Liga, breaking the previous record held by Zinédine Zidane’s Real Madrid. The Catalan master has not seen his team defeated on away encounters since he took over the managerial role from Ronald Koeman back in the November of 2021, and his team has recorded 18 games without defeat ever since.
In addition, the Catalans are yet to suffer a defeat in the new league campaign, and with this win, they extended their invincible run to 7, which is an impressive achievement for Xavi’s men. However, as Xavi perfectly described it in his post-match interview: “I’m happy with the record, but I want to translate these records into titles at the end of the season.”
This is the mentality we want to actually achieve something this season, and especially this is what we need ahead of such a difficult run of games, earliest against Inter on Tuesday. Visca Barça.