La Liga: RCD Mallorca 2-4 FC Barcelona: Player Ratings

I guess this is as close to a smile as we are going to get from Tito - David Ramos

A detailed player-by-player breakdown of Barcelona's 4-2 win over Real Mallorca

Victor Valdes 6.3
Minutes played90
Touches23
Passes13
Pass Accuracy69%
Shots Faced3
Saves Made1

Arron says6.5

Another game down, another two goals conceded; looking at the stats, you would think that Valdés has been poor this season, which couldn’t be further from the truth. Momentary lapses in concentration aside, Valdés has simply been unlucky, just as he was yesterday. Very few keepers could have saved Micheal Pereira’s thumping volley, nor was Valdés at fault for the penalty kick.

Dani Alves 6.0
Minutes played90
Touches108
Passes80
Pass Accuracy85%
Key Passes0
Tackles3
Interceptions2
Turnovers3

Arron says7.0

A mixed performance from the Brazilian full-back who was wasteful with a large number of his crosses, but supplied Alexis Sanchez in the build-up to Barcelona’s fourth of the evening. Defensively, Alves was pretty impressive – at least he was when he actually occupied his usual position at right-back, which unfortunately came a little too late to stop Michael Pereira’s goal. Aside from that Dani was pretty mediocre, but as long as he keeps showing glimpses of his undoubted quality, Alves will keep his place in Tito’s starting XI.

Gerard Pique 6.9
Minutes played90
Touches69
Passes56
Pass Accuracy95%
Tackles4
Interceptions1
Clearances6

Arron says7.5

Making his first La Liga start in two months, Piqué reminded Blaugrana fans what they had been missing with a solid performance in the centre of defense. Decisive with his tackling, composed in possession; this was the Gerard Piqué of old – with Geri back in the starting XI, it’s only a matter of time until the clean sheets return.

Javier Mascherano 6.0
Minutes played84
Touches47
Passes41
Pass Accuracy93%
Tackles1
Interceptions0
Clearances3

Arron says6.5

Aside from Victor Valdés and Lionel Messi, Mascherano has played the most minutes of any Barcelona player and unfortunately for El Jefecito, it’s starting to show in his play. Not to say that he’s been sloppy, but Mascherano isn’t dominating the defense as he did last season. Maybe with Piqué back from injury, Mascherano’s form will steadily improve once again.

Jordi Alba 7.0
Minutes played87
Touches107
Passes82
Pass Accuracy89%
Key Passes1
Tackles3
Interceptions5
Turnovers1
Clearances3

Arron says7.0

This was a good match for the Spaniard, who may not have threatened a lot offensively, but was dominant at the back. Alba won possession a team-high eight times from left-back, which should put an end to the suggestion that Barcelona are unbalanced with both Alba and Alves on the field.

Sergio Busquets 6.5
Minutes played90
Touches121
Passes110
Pass Accuracy96%
Tackles3
Interceptions2
Key Passes2
Fouls Won4

Arron says6.5

For around 57 minutes, we were singing the praises of our Catalan pivote – what a difference his return made on the team. With Busi back from suspension, Barcelona were leading quite comfortably against a defensive Mallorca outfit. Then Busquets handled in the area. Victor converted the penalty, Barca’s lead was under severe threat and crucially, Busquets had picked up his fifth yellow card of the season, therefore ruling himself out of Barca’s next match. Granted, he might have been rested against Real Zaragoza anyway, but why exactly did he handle the ball with Piqué in support?

Cesc Fàbregas 7.0
Minutes played90
Touches126
Passes115
Pass Accuracy92%
Shots/Shots on Target2/0
Tackles2
Turnovers5
Key Passes1

Arron says7.0

Favoured over Andrés Iniesta in the centre of midfield, Cesc Fàbregas registered a single assist yesterday – his eighth in eleven La Liga appearances. That pass for Tello’s goal equalled his assist tally from last season, albeit in 17 fewer games, and vindicated Tito’s team selection.

Xavi Hernández 7.8
Minutes played90
Touches176
Passes164
Pass Accuracy91%
Shots/Shots on Target4/1
Fouls Won1
Turnovers4
Key Passes0

Arron says7.5

Xavi was far from his best, but played a crucial part in Barcelona’s victory nonetheless, curling in a delightful free-kick to open the scoring. Aside from the free-kick, Xavi was a little wasteful with his shooting and he did give away possession more frequently than we are used to, but when he scores goals like that, I think we can let it pass.

David Villa 6.1
Minutes played66
Touches22
Passes17
Pass Accuracy94%
Shots/Shots on Target0/0
Fouls Won1
Successful Dribbles0
Key Passes0
Turnovers3

Arron says4.0

I can cope when players make mistakes, when strikers go months without a goal. Heck, I can even deal with Alex Song being a Barcelona player, but an outfield player "being anonymous" in a match is simply inexcusable. I understand that Villa was playing in an awkward position and that his teammates were reluctant to pass him the ball, but Villa didn’t even go out in search of the ball on Sunday. There was no pressing, no real runs to speak of...the fact that Valdés made more touches of the ball says it all really.

Lionel Messi 8.7
Minutes played90
Touches99
Passes81
Pass Accuracy81%
Shots/Shots on Target4/2
Fouls Won3
Successful Dribbles3
Key Passes1
Turnovers3

Arron says8.5

Three cheers for Lionel Messi! Not only did the Argentine secure the three points, but he also eclipsed Pele’s 75-goal haul, which the Brazilian achieved way back in 1958 – further confirmation that Messi is above and beyond anything football has ever witnessed. Maybe he got a little lucky with his first goal of the evening, but his second was clinically taken. Alexis deserves a lot of credit for his chest pass, but watch how Messi reacts. The majority of strikers would have taken that chance on first time, and at first glance it appears as though Messi will as well. However, Leo is composed, he goads the defenders by stopping the ball dead, which allows him just enough time to pick his spot and complete his brace.

Cristian Tello 7.7
Minutes played90
Touches78
Passes69
Pass Accuracy86%
Shots/Shots on Target1/1
Fouls Won0
Key Passes0
Turnovers2

Arron says8.0

With Alexis Sanchez struggling for goals, Cristian Tello reminded Tito Vilanova of his potential with a well-taken goal on the stroke of half-time. Cutting in from the left-hand side, Tello basically passed the ball into the far corner of Aouate’s goal; it really was a sublime finish. Unlike El Guaje, Tello involved himself in the game and judging by their respective performances, I would say the youngster made the better decision.

Alexis Sanchez 7.1
Minutes played24
Touches20
Passes14
Pass Accuracy86%
Key Passes2

Arron says7.0

The Chilean may be on a bit of a drought in front of goal, but still brings so much to the team. The chest pass to Messi was wonderfully selfless, and he could have registered a second assist in the final minutes if it wasn’t for some wayward finishing from Leo.

Marc Bartra 6.1
Minutes played6
Touches4
Passes4
Pass Accuracy100%

Arron saysN/A

Bartra replaced Mascherano with six minutes left to play and therefore does not get a full rating.

Martin Montoya 6.1
Minutes played3
Touches3
Passes3
Pass Accuracy100%

Arron saysN/A

Similar to Bartra, Montoya was only on the field of play for a couple of minutes and will not receive a rating from me.

The Team 7.6
Passes875
Pass Accuracy90%
Shots/Shots on Target12/5
Tackles17
Aerial Battles Won55%
Fouls Won/Committed18/6

Arron says7.0

It was a far from vintage display from the Blaugrana who rode their luck at times to secure the three points at the Iberostar. I can have no problems with how they raced into their three-goal lead, but it goes without saying that a team of Barca’s calibre should not let a side like Mallorca back into the game. However, they came good in the end and that’s what matters at this stage of the season.

Tito Vilanova 7.1

Arron says7.5

Tito made the right choices for the most part with his team selection – Cesc Fàbregas played well, while Cristian Tello was a revelation on the left. Gerard Piqué’s return came at precisely the right time and while his tactical tinkering didn’t pay off on the right-hand side, he didn’t rectify that error by bringing Sanchez off the bench.

MOTM - Messi 69%

Arron saysMessi

Messi's amongst the favourites for the MoTM in any match he plays, so you can be certain the award will go to him when he scores such a decisive brace.

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