Barcelona – Barcelona passed through Vitoria like a ghost. Freezing in the cold, he responded to Real Sociedad’s faltering (at this point the reference to Real Madrid seems to have been a bad joke) with a dishonorable match at Mendizorosa, where Alaves amassed nine matches without knowing victory (which he had barely added three of the last). 12 points played at home) He removed the paint from him in a bad way… even Frenkie de Jong Save the furniture when the tie for nothing seemed to be fixed.
It was a victory to be forgotten, a game to be erased from memory…or to remember with all the bad and worse that a team that was forced to be the opposite of what it was on the field could play. No system, no plan, no speed, no combination… with nothing to save beyond a massive scroll Jordi Alba (who did not erase his unfortunate party) Ferran Torres (disappeared for 85 minutes) and his excellent assistant to Frenkie de Jong so he can score as he pleases, thus avoiding capitalist, personal and collective ridicule.
He was frustrated Alaves, who did not deserve such a punishment after standing up to a giant with feet of clay with unimaginable comfort who took victory like rain in May, with a clear sense of relief after putting on a terrible performance.
It was also a strange night from the coach’s point of view, as he thinks about how he entered the second half, anticipating a revolution in the first half, with the same eleven that started the match … and that he did not move. Until the second half. Can it be interpreted as a punishment? How do you challenge them to be the ones to get the chestnuts out of the fire?
26 years ago, in February 1996, Barcelona tied in the Soria Cup match (2-2) against Numancia, who at that time was playing in the third category of Spanish football. They entered the second half late 1-0 and surprisingly Johan Cruyff didn’t make any changes at the break. The match ended, to a general surprise, with the same eleven players who started it.
“If some wanted to deceive themselves, it would be better to give them the opportunity to be there for the whole match,” at the end, in the press room, the Dutch coach, who forced the players the next day, barely sleeping, to train in the old field attached to the disappearing Monistadi and review the game by video.
Cruyff’s decision caused a clear confrontation between the Dutchman and not a few football players, who did not bite their tongues and answered him frankly, denying that they had deceived themselves, and in some cases (Abelardo, Omar or Ferrer) responded to him .. But Cruyff, of course, was Cruyff And his rise among Barcelona fans was such that there was always a feeling that Barcelona was little less than dragging through the snow at Los Pajaretos.
This time there was no snow in Mendizorosa or a coach with the same resume, not to mention the spirit of turning against his players by guiding them as the Dutchman has done more than once in the past. It was surprising that in the break Xavi made no changes despite his first-half slumber, it was surprising that he did not move until the 70th minute with Nico reaching Abde and that, already in the final stage, he did so to make way for Jutglá for Luuk de The unexpressive Jong… but the sense of ridicule generated by the Barça team was of astonishing size.
It is not known if Xavi’s speech behind closed doors may be less friendly than it was before the media. It is known that this team, this team, needs absolute and urgent excitement because after next week’s holiday, February will come of maximum demand … and in which any mistake can be paid dearly. very expensive.