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Barcelona 5-0 Espanyol, 2017 La Liga: Community Player Ratings

And guess who was the star yet again?

Barcelona v Espanyol - La Liga Photo by Manuel Queimadelos Alonso/Getty Images

Marc-André ter Stegen (7/10)

A nervous outing from the German which resulted in a handful of risky situations. Despite being solid for most of the match, his inability to command the box and judge the flight of incoming crosses put MAtS under unnecessary pressure.

Community Rating: 7

Nélson Semedo (8/10)

We’ve all been wanting to see Nélson Semedo start, and he did not disappoint. The Portuguese full-back stormed his flank offensively and snuffed out any danger that sprouted at the back. His dribbles constantly put Deulofeu in dangerous positions while his dominance allowed Rakitić to flourish.

Community Rating: 8

Gerard Piqué (9/10)

Gerard Piqué was solid for the entire night and was duly rewarded with a set-piece goal.

Community Rating: 8

Samuel Umtiti (8/10)

Big Sam was crucial at the back, winning headers and making interceptions on a regular basis. There were a few fumbles that could have led to dangerous situations but they didn't and that’s all that counts.

Community Rating: 8

Jordi Alba (9/10)

I have to say that I’m pleasantly surprised with Alba’s performance. After criticising the squirrel for the longest time, it was a little shocking to see him command his area calmly, and battle for the ball near the opposition box. Alba’s hustle and telepathic understanding of Barça’s system helped him make two assists. This was the Alba promised years ago in 2012 and it’s high time he became more consistent.

Community Rating: 9

Sergio Busquets (8/10)

When Barcelona needed someone to pass the ball to, Busquets was there. A typical night for the Catalan where he orchestrated the game alongside Andrés Iniesta. Busquets kept it simple and helped connect the lines to perfection.

Community Rating: 8

Ivan Rakitić (9/10)

Ivan Rakitić is arguably the most underrated CM of all time. There are times when he is invisible—these moments are more memorable due of their recency. Many, however, need to remember that for the entirety of last season, Barcelona had no one to operate on the right flank. With two players on the flank, however, Rakitić turned on the after-burners and put on an amazing performance. Rakitić was everywhere—every attack flowed through him in midfield. His final ball and vision produced two assists that capped off an excellent outing.

Community Rating: 8

Andrés Iniesta (8/10)

Iniesta was as important as ever in providing control and creating chances out of thin air. The captain was not as active in the final third but was instrumental in starting numerous counter-attacks.

Community Rating: 7

Gerard Deulofeu (8/10)

Deulofeu has been doing his best to earn his place ever since he returned from Everton. The La Masia prodigy has his doubters but this night was a wake-up call. Deulofeu is good—it’s that simple. Yes, his dribbling is a little sloppy and he tends to slow the move a little, a la Neymar, but his intelligence & thought process is on par with some of the best in the world. Hard work and humility will take him far—he just needs to put his head down and focus.

Community Rating: 8

Luis Suárez (7/10)

After numerous misses and some bad touches, Luisito finally managed to bag a goal in the final moments of the game. Suárez was a big factor in the box as he provided a body for Lionel Messi to ping the ball off, but his finishing was almost criminally poor apart from the goal. Luis needs to pick himself up if Barça is going to compete for the Liga.

Community Rating: 7

Lionel Messi (10/10)

Hat-trick, dribbles and magic. Messi is on fire and one can see it in his runs and urgency—it’s like he’s a man with a point to prove. I love it.

Community Rating: 10

Ousmane Dembélé (5/10)

A decent first show for Ousmane Dembélé. The Frenchman replaced Gerard Deulofeu on the right and showed-off his close control & burst of pace on a couple of occasions. His beautiful cross which created Luis Suárez’s lone goal on the night was beautiful and a precursor of things to come.

Community Rating: 7

Paulinho (NA)

Too little to make a judgement. I could criticise him for not getting on the end of a wonderfully weighted pass from Luis Suárez but that would be nitpicking.

Community Rating: 7

André Gomes (NA)

Despite playing very few minutes, Gomes attempted a few dribbles to impress his new coach.

Community Rating: 7

Ernesto Valverde (9/10)

Intense pressing, a high-line and loads of goals—Ernie won big and in style. The coach made use of all his substitutes and my only gripe was that Iniesta nearly played 90 minutes.

Community Rating: 8

The Team (10/10)

An excellent performance from everyone which led to a massive derby win.

Community Rating: 9

Man of the Match: Lionel Messi

Who else?

Community: Messi

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