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La Liga El Clasico: Real Madrid 3-1 FC Barcelona: Player Ratings

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A detailed, player-by-player breakdown of Barcelona's gut-wrenching La Liga loss in the El Clasico.

Gonzalo Arroyo Moreno

Claudio Bravo
5.9
Minutes played: 90
Touches: 42
Passes: 13
Pass Accuracy: 85%
Shots Faced: 6
Saves Made: 3
Aerial Duels Won: 1

Bostjan says: 6.5

The streak is over, and it was over in a big way. Bravo was lucky not to give up the first goal of the match in the 10th minute when two Benzema shots hit the frame of the goal. He only saved three of the six Real Madrid shots that were on target, but he had absolutely no chance on any of the three that ended in the back of the net. Still, Bravo was a commanding presence in goal, doing his best to collect all the crosses that were in his reach.

Dani Alves
4.6
Minutes played: 90
Touches: 96
Passes: 67
Pass Accuracy: 98%
Key Passes: 0
Shots/Shots on Target: 1/1
Tackles: 8
Fouls Won: 1
Clearances: 2
Fouls: 0
Interceptions: 2

Bostjan says: 5.5
Clearly Alves’ focus in this game was defense, but that doesn’t mean he was actually good at his job. Most of Real’s traffic came down his side and Alves could do little to prevent people from getting past him. The Brazilian made a few important plays, but it was far from enough to make the lives of Barcelona’s center-backs and Bravo’s job any easier. In attack he didn’t fare much better, losing the ball too often, and sending crosses into areas where no Barcelona players were located.
Gerard Pique
3.2
Minutes played: 90
Touches: 50
Passes: 37
Pass Accuracy: 92%
Tackles: 1
Interceptions: 3
Clearances: 5
Aerial Duels Won: 1

Bostjan says: 4.5

I don’t want to talk about Pique. I really don’t. He made a couple of good plays, but there were clearly more bad ones than there were good ones. That’s all I’m going to say.

Javier Mascherano
5.8
Minutes played: 90
Touches: 66
Passes: 85
Pass Accuracy: 94%
Tackles: 4
Interceptions: 4
Clearances: 2
Aerial Duels Won: 0
Fouls: 0

Bostjan says: 6.5

Without Mascherano this game could’ve easily ended much worse for Barcelona, as in 5-1 or 6-1 worse. The Argentine was cleaning up Pique’s messes throughout the game, making tackles, clearances and interceptions all game long. His lack of height and physicality was exposed on Real’s second goal, and the mix up caused by Iniesta in the third goal left Mascherano out of position, but that were about the only two negative plays involving Mascherano.

Jeremy Mathieu
5.3
Minutes played: 90
Touches: 67
Passes: 48
Pass Accuracy: 79%
Shots/Shots on Target: 1/1
Tackles: 3
Interceptions: 1
Clearances: 4
Aerial Duels Won: 0
Key passes: 1

Bostjan says: 6.0

We’ll never know how this game would’ve turned out if Mathieu played at center-back instead of Pique, but Mathieu did his job admirably on the left side of the defense. Defensively he wasn’t tested much, but when he was the results were mostly positive, though, he was beaten on a few of occasions. In attack he wasn’t nearly as dangerous as Jordi Alba has been usually, but he made a couple of good plays. In the first half he created a great scoring chance for Messi that the Argentine squandered, and in the second he fired a booming shot from the left wing that surely would’ve went in off the post had it not been saved by Casillas.

Sergio Busquets
4.3
Minutes played: 90
Touches: 67
Passes: 60
Pass Accuracy: 87%
Tackles: 2
Interceptions: 1
Shots/Shots on Target: 1/0
Clearances: 0
Aerial Duels Won: 0
Turnovers: 1
Key passes: 0

Inder says: 4.5

A horrid game, period. Sergio Busquets is adding to the theory in the press and amongst certain sections of the fan-base that Mascherano deserves to start as defensive midfielder. Purely on the performances of the two in this game? There can be no argument. Busquets found himself making tackles that were at times, great but mostly a blunder but worse, he then would regularly proceeded to give the ball away. Considering his passing is his "main selling point", today's display was just unacceptable. In the 2nd half, Busquets had the chance to show some leadership, as our 4th captain, and put in a couple of crunching tackles to change the flow of the game, which never happened.

Andres Iniesta
4.6
Minutes played: 71
Touches: 69
Passes: 65
Pass Accuracy: 88%
Shots/Shots on Target: 0/0
Turnovers: 2
Key Passes: 1
Successful Dribbles: 1
Tackles: 0

Inder says: 5.5

Had a couple of moments where he was in space and couldn't produce the final goods. Picked up a yellow for a foul in the defensive third and was responsible for giving away the ball for Madrid's third. Finally, picked up an injury. As discussed on twitter, one of the many flaws in Barca's game was also the total lack of real pressure from midfield, which added to our defensive woes.

Xavi
4.9
Minutes played: 59
Touches: 59
Passes: 62
Pass Accuracy: 94%
Shots/Shots on Target: 0/0
Fouls Won: 0
Interceptions: 1
Turnovers: 0
Key Passes: 1
Successful Dribbles: 0

Inder says: 6.0

Lucho's first mistake was starting Xavi and that is NOT Xavi's fault. The Barca legend (like his team mates) started the game well and then just disappeared. Worse, he was expected to cover for our full-backs who had a horrid game. This was only going to work if Barca was a well drilled, smooth flowing team and the PSG and Madrid games showed that is not the case. Difficult to really rate Xavi cause he just wasn't visible for the most part.

Luis Suarez
6.3
Minutes played: 68
Touches: 45
Passes: 33
Pass Accuracy: 91%
Shots/Shots on Target: 0/0
Turnovers: 3
Successful Dribbles: 3
Key Passes: 3
Tackles: 1
Fouls: 2

Inder says: 6.5

Great pass to register his first assist in Blaugrana, when he found Neymar who scored. Was quiet otherwise and not on the same wavelength or speed as the other players (which says a lot considering the others were pretty bad as well). That said, it is difficult to judge him since it was his debut.

Lionel Messi
5.0
Minutes played: 90
Touches: 81
Passes: 62
Pass Accuracy: 88%
Shots/Shots on Target: 4/2
Fouls Won: 2
Successful Dribbles: 4
Key Passes: 3
Turnovers: 2
Tackles: 0

Inder says: 6.0

Unfortunately, instead of Messi looking to reach top form at the Clasico, it was the opposite. His finishing deserted him when he missed from a few yards out, what definitely should have been Barca's 2nd goal (which would have made it 2-0 to Barca). Seemed disinterested for the rest of the game, while also picking up a yellow (let's not even start on the referee). Quite frankly, Messi's most disappointing performance this season by a margin. To add to that, most of the players lacked any movement around him and so his passing angles were as invisible as him.

Neymar
6.6
Minutes played: 90
Touches: 64
Passes: 42
Pass Accuracy: 88%
Shots/Shots on Target: 5/1
Fouls Won: 4
Key Passes: 1
Successful Dribbles: 1
Turnovers: 5

Inder says: 7.0

Did extremely well to wrong foot Carvajal and Pepe before passing the ball into the net out of the reach of Casillas. Did well to get involved in the first half, but found very little space later. Carvajal had Neymar in his pocket for pretty much the whole match with exception of the goal. Picked up a yellow as well

Ivan Rakitić
4.7
Minutes played: 31
Touches: 41
Passes: 33
Pass Accuracy: 88%
Shots/Shots on Target: 2/0
Interceptions: 1

Bostjan says: 6.0

Rakitić’s substitution didn’t have the effect Luis Enrique envisioned. While his passing was mostly on the mark, his crossing from corner kicks was too predictable and usually helped Real Madrid more than it did Barcelona. The Croat will surely not be proud of this cameo.

Pedro 4.0
Minutes played: 22
Touches: 13
Passes: 7
Pass Accuracy: 100%
Tackles: 2

Bostjan says: 6.0

Pedro was his usual hard-working self while on the pitch, but it’s a sad day when your right winger has more impact on the defensive side of the game than on the attack. While it’s great that Pedro helps out on defense, don’t get me wrong, it’s about time he starts doing what he’s getting paid for – score goals.

Sergi Roberto
3.7
Minutes played: 19
Touches: 16
Passes: 13
Pass Accuracy: 100%
Tackles: 1

Bostjan says: N/A

Once again Sergi Roberto was put on the pitch in a lose-lose situation for him. Clearly, his teammates lost just about all the motivation that late in the game, and without a creative midfielder alongside him Roberto can't be as effective. He did well to step on the ball on a couple occasions, but I can’t give him a full grade for his time on the pitch.

The Team 4.1
Passes: 624
Pass Accuracy: 90%
Shots/Shots on Target: 15/5
Tackles: 23
Aerial Battles Won: 38%
Fouls Won/Committed: 11/10

Bostjan says: 5.0

Simply put Barcelona did not perform at a standard needed to win an El Clasico match. The start to the game was brilliant, and the first half as a whole was mostly good, but as the game went on Barcelona’s performance dropped. The defense, save for a couple goal-saving plays was in shambles, the midfield couldn’t control the game, and the forwards were often not on the same page. A showing not worthy of a team like FC Barcelona…

Luis Enrique
3.7

Bostjan says: 5.0

Lucho got a few things wrong in this one, but I still believe the starting line-up wasn’t one of them, though I would've started Rakitić in Xavi's place if you asked me before the match. On paper, playing Mathieu should’ve brought the team more defensive stability, and to an extent it did, but it was the right side that was ran over. The substitutions were questionable, especially the one where Xavi was taken off, but those did not lose Barcelona the game. The game was lost before that, in the first half when Barcelona missed their chances, and I can’t (fully) blame Lucho for what the players failed to accomplish.

MOTM - Neymar
30%

Bostjan says: Mascherano

From the beginning of the voting this was two horse race, and in the end Neymar just edged it, with Javier Mascherano finishing in second place just three percent removed from first. The Barcelona debutant, Suarez, finished on the podium as well with 15% of the votes.