Valencia defeats Real Madrid 2-1!
Hay Liga! Vamos!
FC Barcelona cannot take advantage of Real Madrid's slip-up, as El Blaugrana was defeated by David Moyes' Real Sociedad 1-0 on Sunday night. An own goal by Jordi Alba was the lone goal.
Well, that's it. Barcelona looked terrible, had no creativity, no tactics, and let perhaps the golden opportunity of the Liga season slip away. Were some of the players off? Yes, and they deserve to be criticized. Luis Suarez was nowhere near the Suarez we are expecting to see, the midfield was inept, and the defense was shaky the few times La Real had possession. What happened to Andres Iniesta? Haven't seen him perform well in a while. Xavi was trying his best, but it wasn't enough. Martin Montoya isn't helping his cause to be the future RB either. No Ivan Rakitic? Sure, why not. Unreal.
I want to write another "Fin De Ciclo" article, but how can I write one of those when this ciclo started a few months ago? Let's call this "Fin De Ciclo: FCB Board Edition."
There is no way Luis Enrique can remain as FC Barcelona manager. He has brought nothing to this club, and will continue to bring losses, frustration, and ineptitude.
Luis Enrique after the loss: "We deserved more. Always difficult to play against team that parks bus, and they could do that thanks to that early goal."
What did you expect to see from La Real after they went up 1-0, Lucho? To go all-out in attack? Face it: you don't have any tactics to break the bus, Lucho. You don't know what you are doing, and you keep "inventing" and "trying new tactics" to see if it can bring you success. That might have worked at Celta Vigo, but it won't work at FC Barcelona, as it didn't work at AS Roma. #Luchoism
Pep Guardiola must be laughing in Bavaria. #justsaying— Xoel Càrdenas (@XoelCardenas) January 4, 2015
After Madrid's loss, it looked like the window of opportunity to get back in the Liga race had opened. But Luis Enrique decided to close that window by bringing out a terrible lineup, which excluded both Lionel Messi and Neymar.
According to reports, Lucho and Messi got into an argument during a training session this past week. Lucho allegedly pulled the "I'm the boss" card on Leo, and some are saying that this is the reason Lucho benched Messi against La Real.
I don't know if this is true or not, but if this is somehow true, it shows that Lucho has no respect for his players and vice versa. If there was a disagreement, that's OK. It happens in football and with players and managers all of the time. It just depends on how you respond and react to the disagreement. If Lucho pulled the "I'm the boss" card, then he has no respect from his players. A boss in any profession doesn't need to pull the boss card because it should be obvious to his employees that he or she is in charge. Why state the obvious? A boss that pulls the boss card is an incompetent boss because he/she has to remind his/her employees who is allegedly in charge and who should allegedly deserve respect. I will give Messi the benefit of the doubt, not because he is "Messi", but because he hasn't done anything in his career that would make me doubt whether or not he is stubborn or not. I can't say the same for Lucho, who as we all know is as stubborn as a mule.
Lucho has minimal respect as a manager from his players. According to Cope (Spain), Messi is allegedly furious with Luis Enrique and doesn't believe things will get better with him as the manager.
Luis Enrique: "Would I take same decision of leaving Messi and Neymar on bench? Don't know. Had trained less, so didn't want to take risks."— barcastuff (@barcastuff) January 4, 2015
Did Barcelona lose because Neymar and Lionel Messi were not in the starting XI? No, but it would've been helpful to have both stars to play the entire game.
So, this illustrates a problem with Barca... RT @BlaugranesBarca: We need Messi.— Kevin McCauley (@kevinmccauley) January 4, 2015
If you have Suarez up top, Xavi and Iniesta, and you *need* Messi to score on a team with Canales in the pivot? Something's wrong.— Kevin McCauley (@kevinmccauley) January 4, 2015
The problem with FC Barcelona is deeper than the players having a bad game. The manager is inept, has no tactical ideas, and has no true respect of his players. The current FCB board is the worst ever, and need to be relieved of their duties immediately.
If the FCB socios don't do something about this FCB board, then they take part in the failure of this season as well. Enough is enough, and the socios need to grow a pair and try to save their club from further disaster. Otherwise, don't expect to see Barcelona raise any trophies in 2015. Like the transfer ban, which we owe the FCB board for, we won't see any changes until 2016.
After the match, Andoni Zubizarreta was interviewed about the loss and the transfer ban. When asked specifically about the transfer ban, Zubi said, "(Josep) Bartomeu is who knows the situation better because he was the sporting vice-president when this happened with FIFA."
Is it just me or did Zubi try to throw Bartomeu under the bus with that statement? Zubi also stated that, "I am at the disposal of the president and what is best for Barça."
Andoni Zubizarreta's days as sporting director are numbered. It wouldn't be shocking if Zubi is sacked by the end of the week. Bartomeu is under pressure, and deservedly so. Bartomeu can let go of Lucho, but it'd be easier for him to fire Zubi and keep Lucho as manager to keep the heat on the manager and not the president.
UPDATE: On Monday, Andoni Zubizarreta was relieved of his duties at FC Barcelona.
In my opinion, all should be relieved of their duties, but that's now on the FCB socios to demand it to happen, including new elections.
I'll say this for Lucho, he's really smashing the anti-Pep theory that "any idiot could manage Barcelona"— MOLOCH THE LOVELESS (@MochineGun) January 4, 2015
These are dark days for FC Barcelona.
I know that the sun will shine again, but when will that day be, I honestly don't know. 2016 would be my guess. Better days can come sooner, but it's going to take the action of the FCB socios to demand new elections. If this doesn't happen, we are stuck with witnessing disappointment, shame, bad signings not working out, lack of creativity, and frankly more losses in 2015 with the transfer ban as the icing on the rancid cake.
Sad to think that 2015 just arrived, and most Culés are already looking toward 2016.
Thank you, Josep Bartomeu, Andoni Zubizarreta, Luis Enrique, Sandro Rosell and the rest of the FCB board for a 2015 that seemingly looks like is going to be a poor year.
I will continue to support the players, but never this FCB leadership.