A disappointing performance in their latest fixture sees Barcelona succumb to a 1-0 loss. The Catalan giants were unable to overcome a resilient Shakhtar Donetsk side in Germany. Ultimately, Barcelona return from Hamburg empty-handed with all the spoils going to their Ukrainian opponents.
With this result, Barcelona still maintain first position in Group H but Porto now has the chance to reach their points tally. Much of the blame will undoubtedly go to Xavi, but several Barcelona players were below par on the night.
Here is how they fared against Shakhtar Donetsk.
Ter Stegen: 7.5
The German goalkeeper had a great game on his own. Saved some massive shots from the opponents and was accurate with his passes. Could not have done much about the goal he conceded, however.
Joao Cancelo: 6.5
The Portuguese fullback was progressive enough to keep the team focused on the offense. His darting runs and clever passes allowed Barcelona to open up Shakhtar Donetsk from time to time during the game.
Ronald Araujo: 7.0
In terms of defensive solidity, none compared to Ronald Araujo. The Uruguayan was often left as Barça’s last line of defense and he covered it heroically. Solid game from the South American defender.
Andreas Christensen: 6.0
Brought back into the starting eleven by Xavi, Andreas Christensen had a decent outing. He managed to hold his own and often allowed Barcelona to win duels that could then be transitioned into a counter attack.
Marcos Alonso: 5.5
Was present enough to help Barcelona circulate possession. Beyond that, the player showcased no particular involvement that could be characterized as being crucial for Barcelona.
Oriol Romeu: 6.5
Not pressed as regularly as he has become accustomed to in recent games, Oriol Romeu took advantage. He was an accurate passer and also made smart decisions that helped Barcelona advance the ball progressively.
Attempted his best to continue thwarting Shakhtar in any way possible. However, the youngster ultimately could not have too much of an impact. One of Gavi’s quieter performances of this season.
Ilkay Gundogan: 8.0
In terms of reading the game, no player on the field excelled as much as Ilkay Gundogan. Smart decisions, quick passes, great vision, and an aura of invincibility surrounded the German midfielder today. Great individual performance.
A clear lack of offensive contributions further hurt Raphinha’s chances of maintaining his position as a starter. The Brazilian winger consistently failed to beat his opponents in direct encounters and often seemed quite aimless with his passes.
Robert Lewandowski: 5.0
Undoubtedly the weak link for Barcelona against Shakhtar Donetsk. The Polish striker was rather frustrating to watch. Unable to control the ball well, making infuriatingly poor decisions, and coming in the way of several promising Barcelona attacks, Lewandowski had quite the ineffective performance.
Ferran Torres: 5.5
Similar to the rest of the attacking forwards, Ferran Torres was hardly an effective asset. Slowed down the game on several occasions and even looked unconvincing in front of the goal. Not a great performance.
Joao Felix: 6.5
Upon his introduction, Felix was a clear improvement over Ferran Torres. In terms of creating chances for himself and his teammates, the Portuguese star was quite effective. Ultimately, however, he could not do much.
Alejandro Balde: 6.5
In terms of offensive contributions, Alejandro Balde was restricted due to Shakhtar’s defense. However, the Spaniard more than made up for that by being quite the defensive guardian for Barcelona. His contributions even as the last man were impressive to see.
Ensured that Barcelona retained a good hold of the game. Pedri’s understanding of the game is undoubtedly levels above those around him, but could not get enough time to make a more prominent impact.
Lamine Yamal: 7.0
The 16-year-old winger was arguably the most dynamic of the substitutes. Creating some clever chances for his fellow Barcelona forwards, the youngster was quite the delight to watch.
Fermin Lopez: N/A
Not enough time or impact to warrant a rating.