La Liga: Rayo Vallecano 0-5 FC Barcelona: Player Ratings

Denis Doyle

A detailed player-by-player breakdown of Barcelona's 5-0 win over Rayo Vallecano

A little later than usual, here are the community ratings for the weekend's victory over Rayo Vallecano:

Victor Valdes 6.9
Minutes played90
Touches49
Passes23
Pass Accuracy52%
Shots Faced3
Saves Made3

Arron says7.0

A fairly quiet day for the Catalan custodian as Rayo’s profligacy in front of goal cost them the chance to stun their illustrious visitors. Valdés was forced into action a couple of times by Javi Fuego and on both occasions he was equal to the efforts of the holding midfielder. With Celta travelling to the Camp Nou on Saturday, Valdés might even fancy his chances at a second-successive clean sheet.

Martin Montoya 7.4
Minutes played90
Touches85
Passes51
Pass Accuracy82%
Key Passes1
Tackles2
Interceptions1
Turnovers4

Arron says8.0

Montoya was excellent on Saturday, putting in a composed performance on the right-hand side of defense even when his colleagues were struggling. All in all, it was a well-rounded showing from the youngster; he made a couple of crucial challenges, some good passes and provided an outlet for the Blaugrana attack.

Sergio Busquets 7.2
Minutes played90
Touches59
Passes49
Pass Accuracy84%
Tackles3
Interceptions0
Clearances4

Arron says7.5

Busi adapted well to a role in the centre of defense, although at the same time it was obvious that neither Sergio nor the team should consider this as anything but an emergency option. Busquets didn’t do anything wrong in the centre of defense – far from it – he was accurate with his passing, allowing the Blaugrana to build from the back rather than relinquish possession and chances, and he was the yin to Adriano’s yang so to speak, sitting back while the Brazilian pressed the man in possession and vice versa.

Adriano Correia 7.0
Minutes played90
Touches57
Passes41
Pass Accuracy78%
Tackles2
Interceptions0
Clearances12

Arron says7.0

Speaking of the Brazilian, who would have thought that this was the same man who featured on the wing for Sevilla? Granted, Adriano is by no means a conventional centre-half, nor will he ever win any awards for his performances in the heart of defense, but he is exactly what Barcelona need at this point in time.

Jordi Alba 7.7
Minutes played81
Touches65
Passes35
Pass Accuracy74%
Key Passes1
Tackles2
Interceptions3
Turnovers3
Clearances2

Arron says7.0

No goal for the former Valencia defender this time round, but Alba did help himself to an assist, setting up Xavi for his third goal of the season. On the other hand, I was slightly disappointed that Alba gave away so many fouls – particularly after he received a yellow card so early in the match for an unnecessary challenge.

Alex Song 6.6
Minutes played90
Touches66
Passes46
Pass Accuracy91%
Tackles2
Interceptions3
Clearances3
Key Passes0
Turnovers7

Arron says6.5

Song recovered from a shaky start to take control of the midfield, although whether he is the best choice at pivote for a club like Barcelona remains to be seen. Personally, I would have preferred Busquets to start in midfield with Marc Bartra at the back, or if that wasn’t possible, I would have settled for JDS ahead of Song. Jonathan may not be as physical, but Barcelona’s problem in this particular match was not athleticism, it was retaining the ball.

Xavi Hernández 7.8
Minutes played84
Touches83
Passes62
Pass Accuracy92%
Shots/Shots on Target1/1
Turnovers9
Key Passes2

Arron says6.5

Xavi once said: "I must have at least 100 touches of the ball every match. If I had to go back to the dressing room with only 50 I'd be ready to kill someone". So, who exactly broke the bad news to our midfield maestro in the dressing room? 83 touches was more than anyone managed in the match between Manchester United and Chelsea, but for Xavi, it wasn’t enough. We are used to seeing numbers well into the 100s and sometimes he even comes close to the 200 barrier. Thankfully, Xavi didn’t murder anyone this time round, and it’s a good thing too, as he was the one to blame. Uncharacteristically lax in possession, Xavi gave the ball away far too frequently and aside from his goal, he contributed little to the team. Having sat out last night’s win over Deportivo Alaves, I fully expect Xavi to be back to his best this Saturday.

Cesc Fàbregas 8.9
Minutes played90
Touches84
Passes68
Pass Accuracy88%
Shots/Shots on Target2/2
Fouls Won3
Turnovers2
Key Passes3

Arron says9.5

In contrast to Xavi’s lethargic performance, Cesc Fàbregas was simply sublime in the Barcelona midfield. With a goal and two assists to his name, I contemplated handing Fàbregas a perfect 10/10 rating, but I know that he can do better and one could argue that he was better – and more decisive – against Deportivo La Coruna. His first assist was jaw-dropping and his goal was equally spectacular; more of the same please Cesc!

Pedro Rodriguez 7.7
Minutes played90
Touches39
Passes27
Pass Accuracy78%
Shots/Shots on Target2/1
Fouls Won4
Successful Dribbles1
Key Passes1
Turnovers4

Arron says7.0

Still no goal for Pedro who is struggling to replicate his international form with the Blaugrana, although he did manage an assist on Saturday – and what an assist it was. Spotting the run of Cesc Fàbregas, Pedro made no mistake with his cross and undoubtedly that will have pleased Tito Vilanova. With Dani Alves set to return to league action this weekend, Pedro should have the freedom to drift in-field; and when he does, goals are sure to follow.

Lionel Messi 8.8
Minutes played90
Touches55
Passes41
Pass Accuracy88%
Shots/Shots on Target7/3
Fouls Won2
Successful Dribbles1
Key Passes1
Turnovers1

Arron says9.0

Another day, another brace for the Argentine superstar who has now scored 13 league goals in just nine appearances. Should La Pulga continue at this rate he will break his own record of 50 league goals in a season – no matter how high he sets the bar, you know he will push in higher in a year’s time. Messi’s first goal was well-taken, and his second, Barcelona’s fifth, may not have been fair on Rayo Vallecano but it was equally clinical.

David Villa 7.9
Minutes played63
Touches26
Passes17
Pass Accuracy88%
Shots/Shots on Target2/2
Fouls Won0
Key Passes0
Turnovers5

Arron says7.5

Villa only managed to have 17 touches of the ball in his time on the field, although who can argue with the results? All that mattered is that one touch; that one shot that put the Catalans ahead – El Guaje is well and truly back.

Alexis Sanchez 5.4
Minutes played27
Touches18
Passes14
Pass Accuracy64%
Key Passes2

Arron says6.0

Alexis made a couple of good passes in his time in the field, but he was also fairly wasteful, straying offside three times in less than half an hour.

Marc Bartra 6.5
Minutes played9
Touches7
Passes5
Pass Accuracy100%

Arron saysN/A

Bartra came on with under 10 minutes remaining, and therefore did not do enough to warrant a full rating.

Jonathan dos Santos 6.2
Minutes played6
Touches15
Passes11
Pass Accuracy100%
Key Passes1

Arron saysN/A

Similar to Bartra, JDS only made a cameo appearance in this match, and while he did put in an encouraging performance, he didn't do enough to warrant a rating.

The Team 7.9
Passes522
Pass Accuracy83%
Shots/Shots on Target15/10
Tackles21
Aerial Battles Won32%
Fouls Won/Committed18/14

Arron says8.5

How can you be unhappy with a 5-0 win? The answer is that you cannot, even though the Blaugrana were far from their best on Saturday. The first half was more difficult than first anticipated, but the team responded well and put four past their hosts in a solid second half display.

Tito Vilanova 7.7

Arron says8.5

Starting with Cesc Fabregas was the right decision. Starting Sergio Busquets and Adriano in the heart of defense also paid off with a clean sheet, and whatever Tito said at half-time made a huge difference. Vilanova's going from strength to strength as Barca manager.

MOTM - Cesc 66%

Arron saysCesc

Another deserved MoTM award for Cesc who was also voted the best player against Sevilla a few weeks ago.

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