That’s more like it! This is more like the Barcelona we like watching week in and week out. How much of the victory can be explained by Iniesta coming back? Perhaps you could say having a more offensive option down the right flank with Vidal made the difference. Then again, the midfield felt like a completely different unit; a unit, by the way, that was actually working for a change. Again, it is hard to pin down precisely why everything seemed to be working flawlessly in this game, but more than likely it is a result of all these things. It is encouraging to see the alternate unit performing this well, especially when the starters seemed, of late, to be slowing some and struggling to finish out games. This performance needs to be taken with a grain of salt, as Borussia Mönchengladbach weren’t precisely very challenging in this match.
It would be very interesting to see the majority of the players from this game return for future fixtures, as they deserve the opportunity, but also because it would be very informing to see what works and what doesn’t. Yes, Borussia weren’t the most difficult of opponents, therefore it would be essential to test some of the things employed in this game on more tough games. And if the idea of benching some of the gala eleven players is not to your liking, consider calling it rotating, as that is precisely why we purchased some of these players to begin with. So, if we could do some very necessary rotation of the squad while also providing valuable playing time to improving players, who frankly deserve it, all while testing what works schematically, then that is a win-win.
Irish Goat’s Gamboling Goleadores!
1st Goleador: Arda Turan
You really can’t do much better than scoring three goals in a single game in the Champions League. That was a terrific match played by the Turkish international. His movement of the ball was spectacular, which is the biggest reason he was always in the right spot to score. He was also unstoppable for the majority of the match down the left flank. Most of us have valid complaints and criticisms when it comes to how Neymar attacks down that left side, what with the excessive dribbling and loosing possession. Neymar is, indeed, quite skilled, but it was very pleasant to see Arda stick to the basics of Barcelona’s playing style of one-touch football and movement off the ball.
2nd Goleador: Denis Suárez
The midfield was absolutely fantastic in this match, and Denis had a lot to do with it. When Barcelona purchased him from Villarreal this was exactly the type of performance they knew they could get out of him. I don’t like to describe players as the next Xavi, or the next Iniesta; Denis is going to be the next Denis, but I definitely understand how enticing it is to compare him to some of the best players ever to don the blaugrana uniform, especially after such a spectacular game.
3rd Goleador: André Gomes
Another midfielder that had a terrific game. This midfield was so entertaining to watch! They were quicker, the passing was fantastic, and whenever the team lost possession they got it back through some very skillfully done high-pressure. Gomes was the very smooth, very suave centerpiece of this trio; a strong, physical anchor.
Visca Barça and see you soon for the next one!