FC Barcelona displayed tremendous character to finally emerge victorious over Sevilla FC tonight at the Camp Nou, mustering one last meaningful attack -- during which they scored the winning goal -- after a spirited fight-back had seemingly secured a share of the spoils for Unai Emery's visitors. At times, Barcelona may have been lucky; at others, they most certainly were not; some might say it evened itself out by the end of the match -- although does it really matter? The most important thing is that the Blaugrana escaped with the three points.
In a 38-match season, it's obvious that you will be faced with matches in which you need to dig deep; grind out a victory rather than walk the ball into the back of the net. Tonight's fixture was a perfect example -- Barca tried to pass it into the net, but that approach failed courtesy of Beto's heroics. When they went a little more direct, they succeeded -- and only trail Atletico Madrid by alphabetical order, if they trail them at all.
Neymar didn't get himself onto the scoresheet, but was in sensational form. His partnership with Lionel Messi needs work, but has already decided matches. Just imagine what might happen when they really hit it off? Cristian Tello was also impressive, while Alexis Sanchez' contributions off the bench ultimately secured the three points. A few moments of madness aside, Gerard Pique and Javier Mascherano played well, even if Victor Valdes was in relatively poor form.
Given time, Gerardo Martino will be confident of ironing out those weaknesses. The return of Carles Puyol is sure to have a positive impact on the squad and the defense. Rotation -- and fewer international breaks -- will also help out. Just remember, Barcelona rarely peak before late October, or even early-to-late November. What's important is that they keep themselves in a strong position before that inevitable peak.
More from Barca Blaugranes:
- La Liga: FC Barcelona 3-2 Sevilla FC: Match Review
- La Liga: FC Barcelona vs Sevilla FC: Live Game Thread
- FC Barcelona News: 14 September 2013; Carles Puyol Close to Returning, Gerard Deulofeu Impressing at Everton
- La Liga: FC Barcelona vs Sevilla FC: Predict the Score
- La Liga: FC Barcelona vs Sevilla FC: Match Preview