Barcelona’s final game of 2020 was a reflection of this entire year for the Catalan giants: wasted chances, wasted talents and bad defending as the Blaugrana drew 1-1 with Eibar at Camp Nou. Barça played well without Lionel Messi, but missed chances and a terrible mistake at the back cost Barça two big points at home.
Barça played pretty well in the first half hour of the first half considering the absences, with some very nice passing patterns and good movement in the final third, with both full-backs constantly overlapping and the front three looking for each other to create chances.
The Blaugrana had a big chance just seven minutes in when Ronald Araujo was brought down in the box, but Martin Braithwaite missed the penalty. Braithwaite seemingly redeemed himself 20 minutes later after finishing an excellent cross from Junior Firpo, but the goal was called off after VAR spotted an offside by Braithwaite.
Barça struggled to create good chances in the final 15 minutes thanks to a nice defensive structure by a solid Eibar team, and at halftime the game was goalless, even though the home team was playing well and deserving of a lead.
Despite Barça’s solid first half, Ronald Koeman made a bold susbtitution at halftime as Ousmane Dembélé replaced Sergiño Dest on the right side of the formation, and the Frenchman was on fire to start the second half, bring his speed and creativity and wreaking havoc on the left with shots, smart runs and dangerous crosses.
Just as Barça looked ready to finally take the lead, a terrible mistake by Araujo put Kike García all alone through on goal, and the Eibar striker showed poise in front of Ter Stegen and gave the visitors a shocking lead.
Koeman made two more changes with Philippe Coutinho and Francisco Trincão coming on, and the two immediately created a beautiful move down the left that found Firpo all alone and the full-back’s cross gave Dembélé a tap-in and Barça were back in business with 25 minutes to go.
Barça continued to put on the pressure but as time went on the creativity became desperation and it was hard to find clear-cut chances against a well-organized Eibar defense. The closest Barça came was on a shot by Trincão that went just wide in injury time, but there was no winner scored and the final whistle came.
Barça drop two points at home again in a game they should have won, and a chance to put pressure on the teams above them is wasted. Consistent inconsistency.
Barcelona: Ter Stegen; Mingueza, Araujo, Lenglet (Busquets 82’); Dest (Dembélé 46’), Pjanic (Coutinho 66’), De Jong, Firpo; Griezmann (Trincão 66’), Braithwaite, Pedri (Puig 88’)
Goal: Dembélé (67’)
Eibar: Dmitrovic; Pozo, Burgos (Oliveira 73’), Bigas, Soares; Diop, Álvarez, Expósito; Inui, García (Muto 73’), Kadzior (Recio 81’)
Goal: García (57’)