La Liga: Valencia CF 1-1 FC Barcelona: Player Ratings

Manuel Queimadelos Alonso

A detailed player-by-player breakdown of Barcelona's 1-1 draw with Valencia at the Mestalla

Victor Valdes 7.9
Minutes played90
Touches41
Passes19
Pass Accuracy53%
Shots Faced5
Saves Made4

Arron says8.5

Following his decision to leave the club in 2014, it’s safe to say that Valdés isn’t the most popular member of the Barcelona squad – at least with Culés – but he deserves a lot of credit for his performance against Valencia. He didn’t just make one big save to save the Blaugrana from defeat; Valdés came up with four huge stops to single-handedly secure the draw – including a jaw-dropping double save in the dying moments of the match.

Dani Alves 7.0
Minutes played90
Touches98
Passes70
Pass Accuracy76%
Key Passes3
Tackles0
Interceptions0
Turnovers0
Fouls Won2

Arron says7.0

Maybe it was just me, but Dani Alves appeared to have a quiet game at right-back; although the stats tell a different story. Alves created the second-most chances (behind Xavi), blocked the most shots and also drew a couple of fouls – not a bad day’s work for the Brazilian. However, his passing percentage was unbelievably low and his inaccuracy with the ball was undoubtedly a factor in Barça’s sloppy offensive play.

Gerard Pique 6.0
Minutes played90
Touches81
Passes64
Pass Accuracy89%
Tackles1
Interceptions3
Clearances3

Arron says6.5

A mediocre showing from Piqué who looked comfortable on the ball, but struggled at times to keep his focus in the face of constant Valencia pressure. So, while he did make a few good interceptions, his lethargic play could have cost Barcelona a point. Thankfully Valdés came to rescue with a tremendous double save, although Piqué will be disappointed that he didn’t contribute more.

Javier Mascherano 5.1
Minutes played55
Touches23
Passes18
Pass Accuracy89%
Tackles1
Interceptions0
Clearances2

Arron says6.0

Mascherano played 55 minutes before being hauled off for Carles Puyol, and given his performance, it was probably for the best. Booked for a cynical foul on Roberto Soldado, Mascherano also failed to win a single aerial duel in his time on the field – a clear weakness that Tito needs to address in the summer.

Jordi Alba 6.8
Minutes played90
Touches105
Passes71
Pass Accuracy87%
Key Passes0
Tackles5
Interceptions7
Turnovers1
Clearances4

Arron says7.5

As expected, Alba was his usual industrious self on the left-hand side of defense and he was simply too good for the inexperienced Juan Bernat. With five tackles and seven interceptions, Alba was easily our most "productive" defender; although I was a little disappointed with his offensive contribution.

Sergio Busquets 6.2
Minutes played90
Touches110
Passes84
Pass Accuracy95%
Tackles5
Interceptions3
Fouls Won2
Key Passes0

Arron says7.5

Showing little sign of fatigue following Wednesday’s Clasico, Busquets put in another solid all-round performance in midfield on Sunday night. That being said, Busquets wasn’t quite at his best and ultimately his hard work wasn’t enough as Barcelona frequently wasted possession in the final third.

Xavi Hernández 6.4
Minutes played89
Touches108
Passes98
Pass Accuracy91%
Shots/Shots on Target0/0
Tackles0
Turnovers1
Key Passes4

Arron says7.5

Yet another composed showing for Xavi, who was one of the only creative influences in yesterday’s Barcelona team. With Lionel Messi all but anonymous, Xavi attempted to pick up the slack although no-one could capitalise on the few chances he created. Will Barça be able to cope in his absence?

Cesc Fàbregas 5.7
Minutes played72
Touches67
Passes54
Pass Accuracy89%
Shots/Shots on Target2/0
Fouls Won2
Turnovers4
Key Passes0

Arron says6.0

Cesc Fàbregas didn’t have the best of nights against a stubborn Valencia defense, although one has to wonder whether Fàbregas would benefit from an "orthodox" 4-3-3. With Iniesta on the left-wing, the onus is on Fàbregas to finish chances, when really he thrives in creating them instead.

Pedro Rodriguez 5.8
Minutes played90
Touches65
Passes55
Pass Accuracy95%
Shots/Shots on Target1/1
Fouls Won2
Successful Dribbles1
Key Passes0
Turnovers0
Tackles4

Arron says7.5

Pedro won the penalty that earned Barcelona a valuable point, and Pedro was the only Barça player to register a shot on target in open play, yet he was rated over a point lower than Lionel Messi? Surely I’m not the only one to find that a little odd? Anyway, Pedro’s contribution at the offensive end arguably eclipsed that of any other Barcelona player, and with four tackles to his name, Pedro did more than his fair share of defensive work too. All in all, I think we saw a good performance from Pedro last night.

Lionel Messi 6.9
Minutes played90
Touches72
Passes56
Pass Accuracy82%
Shots/Shots on Target5/1
Fouls Won3
Successful Dribbles3
Key Passes1
Turnovers3

Arron says6.5

Thanks to his well-taken penalty, Messi has now scored in each of his last twelve La Liga games – although this will not go done in the record books as one of his better matches. For the most part, Messi was frustrated by the Valencia defense, and when he did find space for a shot he failed to hit the target. It’s nothing to worry about though – even the best player in the world will have an off-day every once in a while.

Andrés Iniesta 6.8
Minutes played90
Touches103
Passes87
Pass Accuracy92%
Shots/Shots on Target0/0
Fouls Won3
Key Passes0
Turnovers3

Arron says6.5

Iniesta’s close control is always a joy to watch, but it would have been nice to see an end product from the Spaniard. In his defense, Andrés did have to put up with some rough treatment from the Valencia midfield; and given the number of tackles he faced, Iniesta was always going to find it tough to create chances for a lacklustre Blaugrana attack.

Carles Puyol 6.7
Minutes played35
Touches22
Passes15
Pass Accuracy80%
Tackles2
Interceptions1

Arron says7.0

Puyol replaced Mascherano with a little over half-an-hour left to play, and instantly made an impact with his infectious work-rate. He fought for every loose ball, and never gave up on any 50-50 challenge; basically it was a typical day at the office for Puyi.

David Villa 5.6
Minutes played18
Touches10
Passes9
Pass Accuracy89%

Arron says6.0

Let's be honest, Villa missed our best chance at winning the game, and even if he only made a cameo appearance, that's not gonna cut it.

Thiago Alcantara 6.6
Minutes played1
Touches5
Passes5
Pass Accuracy80%

Arron saysN/A

Thiago only played a minute of regulation time, so it would be harsh to award him a full rating.

The Team 5.8
Passes733
Pass Accuracy88%
Shots/Shots on Target10/2
Tackles20
Aerial Battles Won50%
Fouls Won/Committed20/13

Arron says6.0

With a nine point lead over Atletico Madrid, the team can afford to drop a few points here and there, but that doesn't mean we should accept performances like this. Not to say that we should have crushed Valencia; but we should have at least put in a little more effort. If that meant starting a few fringe players, then so be it.

Jordi Roura 5.1

Arron says6.0

Naturally, Roura has come in for criticism for not rotating the squad, and he probably came in for criticism for his substitutes as well. I think he did an adequate job in the game, and lest we forget that Tito probably picked the team. In that sense his treatment is perhaps affecting the team; after all, it must be difficult to judge which players are fatigued from New York.

MOTM - Valdes 46%

Arron saysValdes

Thanks to his double-save in the final moments of the game, Valdes picked up a well-deserved MoTM award, amassing 46% of the community vote.

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