Segunda División: CD Mirandes 2-1 FC Barcelona B: Match Review

The only goalscorer for Barcelona B - Stuart Franklin

Barcelona B began the season the same way they ended the previous one - with a loss. But the score in this one doesn't tell the entire story as the B team out played the home side only to be stopped on numerous occasions by the goalkeeper.

Barcelona B started the 2013-14 Segunda División campaign in disappointing fashion. Playing on the road at the Estadio Municipal de Anduva against 2011-12 Copa del Rey feel-good story CD Mirandes Barça B recorded their first loss of the season. Dani Nieto's goal wasn't enough for Barcelona B to at least a point from Mirandes who got goals from Gonzalez Iriome and Iñigo Díaz de Cerio.

Starting XI: Jordi Masip; Patric, Sergi Gómez, Edgar Ié, Carles Planas; Ilie Sanchez, Edu Bedia, Javier Espinosa; Joan Angel Román, Dani Nieto, Jean Marie Dongou.

Bench: Adrian Ortola, Frank Bagnack, Pol Calvet, Sergi Samper, David Babunski, Sandro Ramirez

Eusebio didn't need long to disappoint fans with the starting lineup. Especially disappointing were inclusions of Gomez, Ilie and Edu instead of the likes of Bagnack, Samper and Calvet.

It took only three minutes for Masip to get in on the action - he calmly left the line and collected the low cross. On the very next play Barcelona B should've taken the lead. Roman and Dongou played a beautiful one-two that sprung Roman behind the defensive line. One-on-one with the keeper the youngster aimed for the far corner but was bested by the goalkeeper Francisco Prieto. The rebound was cleared before Espinosa could tap it into the open net.

Four minutes later Dongou had the opportunity to score the season opener for the team. Nieto made a nice run down the right wing and found Espinosa on the edge of the box. The midfielder whiffed on the shot, but then floated a pass over the defense to Dongou who one-timed it on goal, however, Prieto produced another excellent save.

Mirandes weren't without chances though as they often went forward in good numbers, but the B team defense cleared the danger very well. Until the 20th minute that is. That's when we saw the defense that frustrated fans last season. Patric turned the ball over in transition, which was sent to the left side to Aritz Mújika who sent a cross the far post where Planas did a whole lot of ball-watching and not a whole lot of ball-clearing. Gonzalez Iriome pounced on the loose ball and tipped it into the unguarded part of the net for the lead.

The game slowed down a bit after that goal and Barcelona B struggled to get back into rhythm for quite some time. But in the 35th minute the youngsters created two quick chances, one by Roman, whose shot sailed over the bar, and the other by Dongou who fired a dangerous shot from the edge of area. The shot was destined to go just inside the post, but was tipped along the way and in the end went just over the crossbar.

Dongou fired another good shot three minutes later from 20-yards out, but once again Prieto showed good reflexes to keep the ball out. On the next play Patric had a chance to score his first ever Barcelona B goal, but his curling effort hit the far post and bounced back into play. Barça B pushed for the equalizer all the way until the halftime whistle, but they were unable to put a shot past the in-form Prieto between the goalposts.

The second half couldn't have started any worse for the B team as just seconds after the restart Iñigo Díaz de Cerio doubled the hosts' lead. De Cerio was in a foot race with Ilie for the loose ball, but the Barcelona B defensive midfielder (and captain) put in a lazy effort which allowed the opposing forward enough space to shoot and score.

In the 48th minute the gap was reduced to a single goal as Nieto scored his first official Barcelona B goal. The winger capitalized on a poor back pass by the left-back and nicely flicked the ball over Prieto. Two minutes later the game could've been all tied up but this time Prieto made yet another excellent save on Dongou who could've had a hat-trick at this point.

Barcelona continued to press forward, but Prieto continued to make save after save. In a span of ten minutes he expertly saved two very good tries by Nieto and also stopped Roman's attempt.

In the 65th minute Sandro made his Barcelona B debut, replacing Roman. Sandro was quickly able to show his speed as he made an excellent run down the right wing and send a good cross to the middle. There Dongou connected with it, but his aim was a bit off as the header flew over the bar.

Ten minutes after the first substitution Eusebio made another one, replacing Ilie with highly-rated prospect Samper.

In the 80th minute Prieto one last time showed his brilliance, making another fantastic on Nieto who was aiming for the top corner after a good looking pass by Planas.

As if the score wasn't bad enough news for the B team, in the 82nd minute Ié went down without any contact and stayed down. He was immediately substituted off with what appeared to be a knee injury, and was replaced by Bagnack.

The youngsters mounted one last charge in added time and had two cracks on goal from a corner kick, but both efforts were blocked. The score therefore remained 2-1 in favor of Mirandes, and Barcelona B will have to wait for their first victory of the season at least one more week. Barça B will then host CD Lugo at the Mini Estadi.

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