Match Day Thread 21-22

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Post by Myesyats Tue Aug 17, 2021 10:22 am

There is always somethnig to look forward to. Plenty of promising youngsters coming up, it's time to look to la masia again, we cant ignore it. Its the bread and butter of the club.

Frenkie, Gavi, Pedri, Demir, Ansu, A.Balde. Perhaps Dembele will overcome his plague of injuries. This could be the core of the team in this new era, young blood and all.

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Post by The Franchise Tue Aug 17, 2021 2:38 pm

Interesting dynamics with the high pressing of La Real's build up. I would have to go over the game again to really analyse but I saw 2 main themes.

1. 433 vs 433, man on man in the midfield, wingers on fullbacks and 2v1 on each end. As nearly always with Koeman, man oriented marking in the midfield, 3v3. As with all teams who build up 1-2, Pedri normally jumps ahead to the pivot and we often look like a 4231 defensively.

Depay with an interesting role, intentionally not pressing the left sided CB (I think this was Normad) but instead adjusting his cover shadow and making sure Normad could not pass laterally to his partner Elustondo. If Elustondo had the ball Depay would apply pressure. I guess Normad was seen as the less progressive passer and therefore given more time on the ball knowing he wouldnt be able to break lines effectively.

It is clear Depay will be the nominal 9, therefore not having to be part of the 2nd line of defence. I guess over Braitwaite, Griezmann or even Fati.

2. Later in the half we started seeing I guess what you'd call the jumping fullbacks. Starts with Griezmann stepping across from the wing and apply more pressure on Normad (him and Depay making 2v2 against the CBs) and thus leaving the leftback free. This triggered Dest to jump up and pressure the leftback and leaving Pique and Garcia 2v2 at the back and Alba more in coverage rather than oriented on the right winger. More and more common theme across Europe, even relatively average tactical coaches like Ole at Utd are using this dynamic and hopefully we can get with the modern times and start using it consistently.

La Real started to have more success when Merino dropped almost as a 3rd CB on the left, far out of the zone Pedri would normally occupy. This change had La Real building up more 343 and because we are so man oriented in midfield it creates enough confusion which leads to time on the ball.

We saw this with Sevilla and other games last season. Koeman may have an initial good plan on how to defend but good coaches can make some adjustments to the build up (especially during that 30 minute cooling break) Koeman cant react with a counter (not easy to do anyway) and because the players are man oriented anyway they will concede more time on the ball to the opponent rather than getting bent completely out of traditional position. Only teams like Leeds are happy to ignore conventional shape to maintain access to all 10 outfield players.

Will be interesting to see how this side of things evolves.
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Post by BarcaLearning Tue Aug 17, 2021 3:19 pm

So glad 4-3-3s are back, last season towards the end everybody were trending with the 3 CBs, but only those with the right players I guess are best for it like Chelsea? 4-3-3 is always the Barca way and hope it stays. The 3 CB supposed to be defensively better but just dont suit us best.

Wonder whats happened during the summer for most of the teams reverting to back 4 so quickly?
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Post by The Franchise Tue Aug 17, 2021 4:04 pm

I dont think there is any difference, some teams will use it and others dont. It depends on what you want to do. I dont think many teams have gone away from it.

Atleti still use it, Sevilla used it (and rarely did last season), Wolves still used it (even with a different coach), Newcastle still did, those just being from teams I saw. I think it is said Inter will still use it and I am sure there are others.

As for Barca, I dont think we were ever fully committed to it anyway. Rather it was used to to account for weaknesses in other areas (inability to press in a 4231/433 is one big one) and some moments to hold on to a lead.

I believe we could easily play some version of 3 defenders but it has to be coached differently. Its not about the system, its about your principles, how you want to play.
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Post by Myesyats Tue Aug 17, 2021 8:15 pm

Koeman and tactics. Good grief. His only reaction to almost blowing another 3 goal lead is bringing on Lenglet rofl Absolutely 0 ability to adjust mid-game.

The legendary tale of "bringing on more CBs on makes us defend better"

Clearly the only sane option at that point in the game was to sub in Lenglet who commits penalties like a machine designed solely for that purpose.

Absolutely clueless manager. His only redeeming quality is that he introduces youngsters successfully to the A team but this should be his last season. I hope Laporta is already looking for a top manager. No more Setiens, Valverdes, Koemans and Tatas. Unless Xavi is ready to come, of course. No need to look further, possibly

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Post by neuro11 Wed Aug 18, 2021 5:06 pm

Agreed. Koeman must leave.

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Post by alexjanosik Sat Aug 21, 2021 5:52 am

Tactics are overrated a bit in football. The best managers are not always the best from a tactical standpoint. Classic example would be Sir Alex and yet he is the GOAT manager. More recent example would be Zidane who is not great tactically and yet has an impressive resume. The other example of a tactician who has failed repeatedly would be Pep. Has failed for a decade to deliver the CL despite billion dollar squads. At big clubs with big players, it's all about man management.
Now, Koeman prior to Barca was no management expert. He had his fair share of issues and management was a key one.
But, he has been nothing short of outstanding in managing us. Arguably the worst crisis at the club in 2 decades. Club in shambles, Barto resignation, Messi saga. The one positive has been Koeman's leadership from the front. He has looked and acted calm, firm and assured.
I can only judge him on his Barca performance and I doubt anyone else (including fancied tacticians) would have done any better. He has my vote and I think he should get this season at the very least.

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Post by Myesyats Sat Aug 21, 2021 9:41 pm

anyone got stream for the game ?

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Post by Myesyats Sat Aug 21, 2021 10:48 pm

>less braithwaite
>more demir


braithwaite is not fooling me with 1 good game, he's trash

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Post by danyjr Sat Aug 21, 2021 11:53 pm

Anyone witnessing Barcelona being better without Messi overnight? All the defensive problems are solved now the "mental midget" is gone.

Laughing
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Post by Myesyats Sun Aug 22, 2021 12:05 am

The first half was so bad. Can't remember last time we were this hopeless. Definitely not improved overnight post-messi Laughing surprise surprise


The dutch duo was great as always, Depay & Frenkie. Good cameo by Emerson and Demir. Araujo solid. The rest? no comment

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Post by alexjanosik Sun Aug 22, 2021 6:21 am

Garcia proving that he is not good enough. Why is Korman picking him over Araujo, who is our best CB by far. Unless he is worries about Araujo's injury issues. From a purely playing standpoint, Araujo wipes the floor with Garcia.
I would pick Mingueza too over Garcia. Mingueza would not get bullied by any forward.
Even Lenglet is better than Garcia.

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Post by alexjanosik Sun Aug 22, 2021 7:12 am

Also, Dest needs support on the right. Right now, he is isolated on the right when attacking. He can take on players but he can't take on 2 players which is what he is facing right now. Griezman needs to stay on the wing instead of moving to the middle and doing a Messi impression. You play an actual winger on the right or atleast someone who keeps their position and can interlink with Dest and it could be an excellent combo.

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Post by The Franchise Sun Aug 22, 2021 2:24 pm

@danyjr wrote:Anyone witnessing Barcelona being better without Messi overnight? All the defensive problems are solved now the "mental midget" is gone.

Laughing


Dead silence when we win impressively, opens up the second we draw a tough away game. Are you sure you are a fan of this club?

We have struggled vs Bilbao consistently for years, with or without Messi. Did anyone think this would be any different?


As for the game, the most concerning aspect was the lack of adjustment to Bilbao's high pressure 442 in the build up.

Busquets dropped into the back and this brought some relief, but this should have been a consistent strategy with other movements.

Busi as part of the back 3, De Jong as the pivot and Pedri and Griezmann as free 8's. Depay and Braithwaite standing occupying the back 4 with their runs in depth.

As we saw the last 30 minutes as Bilbao didn't have the intensity to press, when we broke through it was easy to create chances. Koeman didn't cover himself in glory in this game at all.

I am sick to death of Griezmann. 5th most expensive player in the world and all he brings to the table is a decent first touch, the occasional 1-2 and work rate. 101 games, 35 goals, below average return and I'm seriously struggling to understand why he is so poor in small spaces.
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Post by alexjanosik Sun Aug 22, 2021 3:29 pm

Shocking return indeed. I am willing to give him a bit more time. He has no excuses this season though. No Messi and it seems he has the Messi role roaming all over the pitch. Has to deliver.

On the defense, there is a clear distinction. Kept getting countered, overrun and outnumbered in transition. I only watched the second half but that was not the case. Garcia was clearly targeted by Inaki who took him to the cleaners. And Alba ball watching a couple of second balls. Very different from what used to happen before.

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Post by neuro11 Sun Aug 22, 2021 4:27 pm

Bilbao always play with high intensity and true that we always struggled vs them in the past. I was expecting a loss actually, the draw is a good result. The first-half performance is something to forget, yet I believe we could have won the game if we were a bit more clinical.
I am really happy with Depay. Can't think of what would have happened if we failed to register him.

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Post by danyjr Sun Aug 22, 2021 5:59 pm

@The Franchise wrote:Dead silence when we win impressively, opens up the second we draw a tough away game. Are you sure you are a fan of this club?

We have struggled vs Bilbao consistently for years, with or without Messi. Did anyone think this would be any different?
I don't think you were there when someone on this forum claimed that Messi was the problem to pressing, defence and attack and how the team would have transformed overnight if he was gone. The overlooking of this team's huge shortcomings is what I was referring to, and scapegoating Messi as the culprit to all the problems.

The shortcomings being:

  1. An awful board with no sporting project or direction. No need to say more about that;
  2. The slow unathletic midfield not being able to stay compact in transitions;
  3. The team actually not being very good at playing from the back. You can have the best ball-playing defenders in the world, if your team is not arranged to find pockets of space to receive the ball, that is no good. And there is no plan B either to cope with high pressing. Have a target man forward that would keep a few defenders occupied and maybe find opportunities when the ball is hoofed up? No. Barcelona have been easy to play against, refer to Bayern match;
  4. None of your players other than Depay (last season Messi) are creative. I wonder how many assists your midfield had last season, but none of them are good at unlocking the defence with some dribbling or a defence splitting pass. They have no tools to unsettle a defence. They are all 'keep the ball' type players who don't have the balls to play the riskier pass or god forbid take a shot.

And then you now have 3 'free role' players in the team, Griezmann, Coutinho and Depay. None of these players are CFs or wingers who could play in a 4-3-3 and only one can play at a time in a team like yours IMHO.

  1. Griezmann being the worst of the bunch, and absolute fraud who offers no creativity and close control. But that was obvious, as he has only ever succeeded in counter attacking set ups where space is in abundance and players make movements for him. In static play even Aleñá is better than this fraud.
  2. Coutinho is a one-trick pony but at least he has some strengths compared to Griezmann. He sees the pass earlier than Griezmann and has better control but he's a total mental midget.
  3. Depay who has been your best player along with Busquets so far. More creative, more versatile than the other two. Shame about his Hollywood playing, he could have been more useful if he stopped showing off and decided to play the easier ball instead.
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Post by BarcaLearning Sun Aug 22, 2021 11:51 pm

Busquets has improved and had a nice Euro, but lets not get carried away? Hes aging and our midfield and in general just completely lost out physically to Bilbao, something I imagine we will see often this season. Playing a teenage MF non stop doesnt help.

Dani right said that we couldnt cope with Bilbaos press again it was clear, they know how to play vs us, and Koeman didnt do much to adjust, but nothing surprising again. Imagine when we are up vs the top teams in CL Razz Or even Atletico, etc.
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Post by Myesyats Mon Aug 23, 2021 1:13 am

@alexjanosik wrote:Also, Dest needs support on the right. Right now, he is isolated on the right when attacking. He can take on players but he can't take on 2 players which is what he is facing right now. Griezman needs to stay on the wing instead of moving to the middle and doing a Messi impression. You play an actual winger on the right or atleast someone who keeps their position and can interlink with Dest and it could be an excellent combo.

Dest is shocking defensively. I think I prefer Emerson for now

E.Garcia is B team level

Alba with a shocker as well.


with Pique out injured, I'd rather play Emerson-Mingueza-Araujo-Balde

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Post by danyjr Mon Aug 23, 2021 11:39 am

@BarcaLearning wrote:Busquets has improved and had a nice Euro, but lets not get carried away? Hes aging and our midfield and in general just completely lost out physically to Bilbao, something I imagine we will see often this season. Playing a teenage MF non stop doesnt help.

He is old and slow, yet he is still one of your best players. That's how shocking the rest of your team is.
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Post by The Franchise Mon Aug 23, 2021 3:54 pm

@alexjanosik wrote:Shocking return indeed. I am willing to give him a bit more time. He has no excuses this season though. No Messi and it seems he has the Messi role roaming all over the pitch. Has to deliver.

On the defense, there is a clear distinction. Kept getting countered, overrun and outnumbered in transition. I only watched the second half but that was not the case. Garcia was clearly targeted by Inaki who took him to the cleaners. And Alba ball watching a couple of second balls. Very different from what used to happen before.

You have more patience with him than I do for sure. I dont believe the added freedom will help him much at all. At least in terms of him being a top player, I dont see it and I have got the impression already, Depay will usurp him in terms of our best overall forward.

As a player who's team is supposed to be the protagonist I dont think he has the quality to be the guy. The way Atleti and France have played, he came be more useful as a player of "moments" but I simply dont think he has ever, will ever or even has the ability to be the guy for us. But anyway, time will tell.

Agree totally about the defensive problems. I thought Koeman would rotate Eric Garica and Araujo depending on match ups, with Araujo starting against the more physically gifted forwards and Garcia when we are more likely to control the game because I see the signs of a high level ball player, even in this game. But no idea why Koeman has put Garcia immediately into the team as an automatic starter.
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Post by The Franchise Mon Aug 23, 2021 4:26 pm

@danyjr wrote:
I don't think you were there when someone on this forum claimed that Messi was the problem to pressing, defence and attack and how the team would have transformed overnight if he was gone. The overlooking of this team's huge shortcomings is what I was referring to, and scapegoating Messi as the culprit to all the problems.

The shortcomings being:

  1. An awful board with no sporting project or direction. No need to say more about that;
  2. The slow unathletic midfield not being able to stay compact in transitions;
  3. The team actually not being very good at playing from the back. You can have the best ball-playing defenders in the world, if your team is not arranged to find pockets of space to receive the ball, that is no good. And there is no plan B either to cope with high pressing. Have a target man forward that would keep a few defenders occupied and maybe find opportunities when the ball is hoofed up? No. Barcelona have been easy to play against, refer to Bayern match;
  4. None of your players other than Depay (last season Messi) are creative. I wonder how many assists your midfield had last season, but none of them are good at unlocking the defence with some dribbling or a defence splitting pass. They have no tools to unsettle a defence. They are all 'keep the ball' type players who don't have the balls to play the riskier pass or god forbid take a shot.

And then you now have 3 'free role' players in the team, Griezmann, Coutinho and Depay. None of these players are CFs or wingers who could play in a 4-3-3 and only one can play at a time in a team like yours IMHO.

  1. Griezmann being the worst of the bunch, and absolute fraud who offers no creativity and close control. But that was obvious, as he has only ever succeeded in counter attacking set ups where space is in abundance and players make movements for him. In static play even Aleñá is better than this fraud.
  2. Coutinho is a one-trick pony but at least he has some strengths compared to Griezmann. He sees the pass earlier than Griezmann and has better control but he's a total mental midget.
  3. Depay who has been your best player along with Busquets so far. More creative, more versatile than the other two. Shame about his Hollywood playing, he could have been more useful if he stopped showing off and decided to play the easier ball instead.


I get what you are saying, but we have to be reasonable. Analyzing that game you can clearly say the problems we faced had nothing to do with Messi playing or not. We struggled dealing with their high pressure (as you said) and Inaki yet again abused everyone who isnt Araujo.

I totally agree with all of those short-comings just for the record. There are more that im sure you, me and most people could figure out.
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Post by The Franchise Mon Aug 23, 2021 5:20 pm

Another observation, almost forgot.

Neto was terrible.

I noticed last season, he is a decent enough passer to play for Barca. But his decision making is very poor. I think this is more important than the quality of passes for a Barca keeper, but decision making ability, reading situations with the ball at his feet.

He is too slow to make a short passing decisions, almost cost us a goal with that alone. If not for De Jong heroics.

But he is also far too slow off his line or out of his box. He is like the anti Neuer.

2 different occasions Garcia was shielding the ball from Inaki (basically begging for help) and Neto hadnt recongised it and didnt help at all. This despite it being deep inside the box.

He also didn't move to create better passing angles when Pique had the ball. Which he needed because he was a right footer playing on the left so naturally will look to recycle the ball inside rather than playing under pressure with his left.

Just a poor performance which the stats will not show.
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Post by alexjanosik Mon Aug 23, 2021 6:14 pm

Don't think we lack creative players. That's just not true. You won't find a better midfield passer on the planet than Busquets. Hell, forget midfield. He is the best passer on the planet.
FDJ is a brilliant dribbler who can break from midfield and break lines with his dribbling. Pedri is also very creative. He is running on fumes now but with a month's rest, he will be fine. Then there is Dest who can dribble. That's a decent enough core of creators. Not to mention Puig and Pjanic(if he gets a chance) off the bench.
I don't foresee creating chances as an issue.

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Post by Myesyats Mon Aug 23, 2021 7:13 pm

Cant believe we got Depay as a free agent. What a steal

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Post by Winter is Coming Sat Aug 28, 2021 8:28 pm

@Myesyats wrote:Cant believe we got Depay as a free agent. What a steal


Yeah, might actually be good for us, early days, but he keeps this form/performance up will help us get somewhere this season.
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