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La Liga: FC Barcelona 5-2 Rayo Vallecano: Player Ratings

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A detailed, player-by-player breakdown of Barcelona's high scoring win against Rayo.

David Ramos/Getty Images

Claudio Bravo
7.8
Minutes played: 90
Touches: 69
Passes: 48
Pass Accuracy: 77%
Shots Faced: 8
Saves Made: 6
Clearances: 3

Bostjan says: 8.5

Playing behind a defense like Barcelona’s is no easy task and Bravo certainly didn’t have an easy job. Bravo faced eight shot, turning aside six of them, none better than the fantastic one-on-one save on Javi Guerra just after the restart. Some of Bravo’s saves early in the second half probably saved the game for Barcelona and the defense should really take him out for a steak dinner. Bravo was active all around his area, making numerous plays off his line, being credited with three clearances, though he did make one mistake with the ball at his feet, near the one-hour mark, but Rayo were unable to score.

Dani Alves
5.2
Minutes played: 77
Touches: 48
Passes: 36
Pass Accuracy: 78%
Key Passes: 0
Turnovers: 0
Tackles: 2
Shots/Shots on Target: 0/0
Clearances: 2
Aerial Duels Won: 1
Interceptions: 2

Bostjan says: 4.5

That extension given to Alves in the offseason is looking worse and worse every game. Throughout the game the Brazilian struggled with coverage of former Manchester United man Bebe, who was seemingly making circles around him. His coverage of Lass Bangoura wasn’t much better as Alves lost the Guinea international for the first goal. Defense was always suspect with Alves in recent seasons, but usually he remained dangerous in attack but in this one he hardly made any impact on the attacking game. He was subbed off late in the game.

Jeremy Mathieu
5.2
Minutes played: 90
Touches: 61
Passes: 42
Pass Accuracy: 81%
Tackles: 4
Interceptions: 4
Clearances: 3
Aerial Duels Won: 2
Turnovers: 3

Bostjan says: 4.5

To say that Mathieu has struggled in the early going of the season would be an understatement, and he’s not showing many signs of improvement. All too often it seemed as if the Frenchman was unaware where he was supposed to be positioned, leading to a lot of pointless running around. He did make a few good plays, like the text-book tackle tracking back early in the game, but the negatives clearly outweighed the positives.

Gerard Pique
4.6
Minutes played: 90
Touches: 63
Passes: 48
Pass Accuracy: 90%
Tackles: 2
Interceptions: 1
Clearances: 10
Aerial Duels Won: 6
Key Passes: 1

Bostjan says: 4.5

Playing between two under-performing defenders isn’t an easy task and when you’re in poor form yourself it just compounds the problem. Pique made far too many mental mistakes against Rayo, like failing to clear seemingly simple ball out of danger not once but twice. The highlight lowlight of his night was an incredibly stupid tackle into which he went knee high and was lucky not to get sent off. Pique’s positioning was constantly off - what he was thinking on the first goal Barcelona conceded is beyond me.

Jordi Alba
6.1
Minutes played: 90
Touches: 57
Passes: 37
Pass Accuracy: 89%
Shots/Shots on Target: 0/0
Tackles: 3
Interceptions: 4
Clearances: 1
Key Passes: 0
Turnovers: 3

Bostjan says: 6.5

Like his defensive teammates, Alba also struggled for large stretches of the game, usually when he had to defend against the speedy Lass, who caused him problems throughout the night. Alba also turned the ball over a surprising amount of times, some of which led to dangerous chances by the visitors. Though it appeared that late in the game the left-back managed to save a goal when he dove in front of a low cross to prevent an easy tap in, but the ball fell to Jozabed who scored anyway.

Sergio Busquets
6.8
Minutes played: 75
Touches: 47
Passes: 35
Pass Accuracy: 94%
Shots/Shots on Target: 0/0
Tackles: 2
Interceptions: 4
Clearances: 1
Turnovers: 2
Aerial Duels Won: 0
Key Passes: 2
Fouls Won: 1

Sam says: 8.0

This game was a good example of Busquets’ positional strength. He knew when to get forward and create chances but also knew when to get back and cover the shaky defence. He twice created good goalscoring opportunities, although they weren’t converted and helped snuff out Rayo opportunities on more than one occasion. He was withdrawn in the 75th minute and was one of Barça’s best performers.

Ivan Rakitić
5.8
Minutes played: 90
Touches: 51
Passes: 41
Pass Accuracy: 90%
Shots/Shots on Target: 1/1
Turnovers: 2
Key Passes: 0
Successful Dribbles: 1
Tackles: 1

Sam says: 6.5

A disappointing display from Rakitić in which he failed to have a real influence on the game. Being the most attack minded of the three midfield players, you’d expect him to be the main creator for the team but barring a chance in the first half, he never really got into a goalscoring opportunity. That chance, was Barça’s first opportunity to go ahead. Rakitić made an unmarked run through to the Rayo box but was unable to get the ball past Toño. Overall, the game seemed to pass him by.

Sergi Roberto
7.5
Minutes played: 90
Touches: 51
Passes: 37
Pass Accuracy: 95%
Shots/Shots on Target: 1/1
Fouls Won: 0
Turnovers: 2
Successful Dribbles: 4
Key Passes: 1
Tackles: 3

Sam says: 7.5

Another good performance from Roberto to add to his impressive start to the season. The departure of Xavi and injury to Rafinha has allowed Roberto more game time and he has profited from that. In this game, he was a good attacking threat. Making opportunities, including a great through ball to Rakitić in the first half and his passing was strong throughout. He also put in a good defensive shift which was needed.

Sandro Ramirez
4.9
Minutes played: 55
Touches: 22
Passes: 16
Pass Accuracy: 75%
Shots/Shots on Target: 1/0
Turnovers: 1
Successful Dribbles: 1
Key Passes: 3
Fouls Won: 3
Tackles: 0

Sonia says: 5.0

Sandro was not good at all against Rayo, he made a few too many bad decisions and had more than enough poor shots. He missed chances that were too easy, and desperately needs to learn how to finish (like mostly everyone else on the team). He had no presence all game and the most significant thing he did was unsurprisingly getting subbed off. Sandro needs to step up, or else he won’t be making a case to stay.

Luis Suarez
7.2
Minutes played: 90
Touches: 46
Passes: 29
Pass Accuracy: 55%
Shots/Shots on Target: 4/3
Fouls Won: 2
Successful Dribbles: 0
Key Passes: 2
Turnovers: 7
Tackles: 1

Sonia says: 5.5

Suarez has yet to reach his best form this season, and has been off since it started. Fortunately, he made no errors that would have cost Barca the match, but he didn’t really have a huge positive presence either. He was fine off of the ball and in the build-up of goals, and he also provided some creativity for Neymar to take advantage of, but he was definitely inconsistent and made some not-so-great decisions. On the bright side, however, he scored a goal and received his first-ever assist from Neymar, which indicates that there is hope yet. If given patience, Suarez may yet return to trophy-winning form as the team emerges from its rough patch.


Neymar
9.3
Minutes played: 90
Touches: 71
Passes: 37
Pass Accuracy: 76%
Shots/Shots on Target: 7/4
Successful Dribbles: 3
Key Passes: 4
Tackles: 1
Turnovers: 6

Sonia says: 9.0

Neymar had a dazzling performance against Rayo, arguably his best since coming to Barca. He was obviously been watching Messi, and emulated the GOAT’s playing in more than one instance, scoring 4 goals for the first time in a Barca match. He even assisted Suarez for the first time. Especially considering the less-than-average performances of most of those around him, Neymar was spectacular and will be counted on to lead the team through to January.

Munir El Haddadi
6.2
Minutes played: 35
Touches: 16
Passes: 8
Pass Accuracy: 88%
Interceptions: 3

Kevin says: 5.5

Introduced in place of Sandro after 56 minutes. A couple of eye catching dribbles when coming in from the right side onto his left foot but no real contribution of note otherwise. Should have had a tap in at the death but Suarez failed to find him.

Gerard Gumbau
4.7
Minutes played: 15
Touches: 12
Passes: 7
Pass Accuracy: 57%
Turnovers: 1

Kevin says: 5.0

Brought on to replace Busquets with 15 left on the clock. Becoming a lightning rod for fans of Sergi Samper to vent frustration at of late, did nothing really to lift a Barça midfield that looked relatively uninspired all evening

Douglas
3.7
Minutes played: 13
Touches: 4
Passes: 2
Pass Accuracy: 50%
Interceptions: 1

Kevin says: 5.0

Dani Alves made way for his Brazilian counterpart in the 78th minute and Douglas was welcomed to the pitch with a big cheer from the Camp Nou faithful (hard to tell if there was a mocking element to it really). Miscued a clearance that was almost costly and seems to have added a top knot during his absence from first team football. Not much else to mention.

The Team 6.4
Passes: 444
Pass Accuracy: 81%
Shots/Shots on Target: 14/9
Tackles: 21
Aerial Battles Won: 83%
Fouls Won/Committed: 15/8

Sonia says: 5.0

Despite the great scoreline courtesy of Neymar, the match was not a great performance by the team overall. Neymar had his brilliant moments, and Sergi Roberto and Bravo also performed well, but many other players were not at their best. Pique was especially poor, had Puyol been there, he would have been furious. Likewise, Rakitic also played badly. Most of the other players were average, though the defence was unsurprisingly still terrible. Alba was not great, and Alves put in the poor performance expected of him. Sandro getting subbed off for Munir did nothing, and there was a general lack of discipline throughout the match. Obviously key players (i.e. Messi, Iniesta, Rafinha) are still being missed, and the squad is paper thin. Hopefully the team is able to survive with the help of those players like Neymar until January brings us Arda and Vidal.

Luis Enrique
6.3

Kevin says: 8.0

Returned Alves to his right sided berth while correctly not demoting Sergi Roberto to the bench given his performances of late. Roberto was Barcelona's best midfielder in turn. Will be rightfully worried at his teams defensive showing, especially having specifically mentioned it in his pre-game presser. Seems to be completely averse to giving Sergi Samper a run this season which will draw criticism. Brighter notes included Neymar stepping up for his manager in the absence of Messi and Sergi Roberto's positive offensive performance in the absence of Iniesta. Picked a good team, got a clear win, should know exactly where he needs to improve.

MOTM - Neymar
83%

Bostjan says: Neymar

Unsurprisingly, Neymar ran away with this one, obvious considering he scored four and added an assist. Bravo came in second with 6% while Roberto rounded up the top three with 3% of the votes.