The Barcelona beat 2-1 to Athletic Bilbao this Sunday at the Camp Nou in the first meeting between the two since the final of the Spanish Super Cup that was left to the Basques. Lionel Messi, the great figure, scored a goal and showed that he is fundamental in the team of Ronald Koeman.
The first 20 minutes of the home team were practically perfect. He was able to exert effective high pressure, which prevented his rival from handling the ball, opted for a vertical game and generated goal situations.
The scoring was opened with a free kick from Messi, who had been fouled in the crescent and from there nailed the ball at an angle with his left leg. Neither the goalkeeper, nor the barrier, nor the man lying on the floor, nor the one who ran to the post could prevent that ball from entering the goal.
The set of Koeman he dominated the rest of the first half, but could not extend the advantage and bet on a game more of dominance than depth. Despite reducing his speed, he did not yield the ball and did not suffer dangerous actions in his own area, so he went calmly to the locker room at half-time.
In the second half, the Athletic Bilbao he found himself with a tie at five minutes with a center to the left, behind the Óscar Mingueza, which reached the far post level. Although the receiver had to be Oscar de Marcos, was Jordi Alba who connected the ball and unintentionally put it into his own goal.
After that goal, Barcelona in the first half disappeared. He lost verticality, stopped pressing up and the posture and attitude of some footballers showed the emotional blow that that conquest meant. Thus, the visitor grew in confidence and generated some actions.
Luckily for Koeman, which brought out Miralem Pjanic for Sergi Roberto to add minutes, the Barça team stamped 2 to 1 with 15 minutes remaining. A good collective move from right to left and back to right that found the only surprise raise by Mingueza. The center-back, improvised as a side, beat his brand back and threw a pass to the middle so that Antoine Griezmann push her and celebrate her goal.
At the end, the German coach took out the two French forwards and gave minutes to Lenglet already Martin Braithwaite, modifications that earned him criticism on social networks since he ended up playing with a line of five and with the Danish as a right-hand midfielder.
With this result the Barcelona reached 40 units and equaled the Real Madrid, which on Saturday fell before Levante. The leader of La Liga, is the Atlético de Madrid which holds 50 points and is heading for the title. On the next day, the Catalans will visit Betis and wait for a stumble from the team of Cholo Simeone before him Celta Vigo.
STADIUM: Camp Nou
A report from the Barça technical secretariat was leaked: the shortcomings, who should be recruited and those who would leave
They filter in Spain the figures of Lionel Messi’s contract amid a fierce political intern in Barcelona
Koeman spoke about the leak of the Barcelona technical report and surprised with his analysis: “We are not there to win many things”