Friday, August 12, 2022

3 Talking Points From Barcelona’s Emphatic 5-1 Win Over Leganes

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Snehanjan Banerjee
Snehanjan used to a former columnist at The 4th Official. Fan of KK, Cricket and Liverpool (in no particular order).

It was the ‘MSN’ show at Butarque Stadium on Saturday as La Liga holders Barcelona thrashed newly-promoted Leganes 5-1. Leo Messi stole the headlines with an excellent brace while Suarez and Neymar bagged one each. Rafinha made in 5-0 in the 64th minute. Leganes made in 1-5 in the 80th minute thanks to a stunning free-kick from Gabriel Pires.

Here are three talking points from this game.

Barcelona cannot afford to rest ‘MSN’

Barcelona spent a fortune this summer to bring depth to the squad but the likes of Messi, Suarez and Neymar are irreplaceable and it was once again evident today. Luis Enrique made a failed approach to get a win against another newly-promoted side Alaves last week without the likes of Messi and Suarez and many other regular starters. It took Messi, Suarez and Neymar just 45 minutes to show how they stand out from the like of Turan and Alcacer. The chemistry between Messi, Suarez and Neymar is telepathic and out of the world. Barcelona might have a solid depth now but the difference in quality between the starters and the bench players is huge.

LEGANES, SPAIN - SEPTEMBER 17: Lionel Messi (L) celebrates scoring their fourth goal with teammates Neymar JR. (R) and Luis Suarez (L) during the La Liga match between Deportivo Leganes and FC Barcelona at Estadio Municipal de Butarque on September 17, 2016 in Leganes, Spain. (Photo by Gonzalo Arroyo Moreno/Getty Images)
LEGANES, SPAIN – SEPTEMBER 17: Lionel Messi (L) celebrates scoring their fourth goal with teammates Neymar JR. (R) and Luis Suarez (L) during the La Liga match between Deportivo Leganes and FC Barcelona at Estadio Municipal de Butarque on September 17, 2016 in Leganes, Spain. (Photo by Gonzalo Arroyo Moreno/Getty Images)

Leganes deserve plenty of praise

Even teams like Atletico Madrid, Real Madrid or Sevilla do not play their natural game against Barcelona. The trio of Messi, Suarez and Neymar are so gifted that every team they face, put their sole focus on keeping their shape for 90 minutes against the Blaugrana and stop Barcelona from playing. If they can knick anything on the break, well and good or else 1 point earned against Barcelona is always a bonus. Alaves successfully kept their defensive shape against Barca last week and won the game and Leganes should have taken a similar approach. They made as many as 15 shots during the game that was 5 more than Barca did. Their attacking approach cost them the game but their fearless attitude deserves plenty of praise.

Barcelona must buckle up defensively in order to retain the title

Given the season Real Madrid had last term until Zidane took over, Barcelona should have won the La Liga title without much fuss but a collapse in the second half brought the title race back to life. Real Madrid look much improved this campaign and despite their sluggish start, Atletico will pick up their game very soon too. Barcelona are yet to keep a clean sheet in La Liga this season and if their defensive display does not improve soon, the Blaugrana might lose their title. Messi, Suarez and Neymar will score them goals but the defenders have to improve their game.

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