Barcelona finished the La Liga season in style with a spectacular 5-0 win over Deportivo Alavés away from home. The Blaugrana were dominant, efficient and put on a clinic of passing, movement and goal-scoring. Lionel Messi scored twice to practically wrap up the top scorer race, Riqui Puig and Ronald Araujo played flawless games, and the entire team did a great job to win three points and give fans hope for the Champions League restart.
Barça could have decided to just sleepwalk through a meaningless last game of the season, but we saw the exact opposite in the first 45 minutes: the Blaugrana were absolutely superb from the very first minute, playing with incredible intensity and pressing really hard after losing the ball.
The passing was amazing, there were players making runs all over the final third, and the Blaugrana created two huge chances and hit the woodwork three times in the first 20 minutes. Alavés looked lost and helpless and couldn’t put together a meaningful attacking move, and the Barça defense was always alert to kill any promising attacks at the source.
It took a while but the goals finally came, and they were all beautiful: first Messi played a short cross that Ansu Fati finished with a nice volley, then Messi received a smart assist from Riqui Puig and sat the keeper before scoring the second, and Luis Suárez scored the third after a gorgeous pass from Messi and a perfect assist from Jordi Alba.
The halftime whistle came to end the best, most entertaining half of Barcelona football this season, and with the win already guaranteed it was all about keeping the intensity and scoring more goals to finish a depressing season on a high.
There was some bad news for Barça to start the second half when Clément Lenglet had to leave after just one minute with a groin injury, and we got to see Arturo Vidal playing center-back which was pretty fun as the Chilean had the green light to tackle everyone he wanted.
Nélson Semedo was the one who replaced Lenglet and the Porutguese immediately scored a very good goal thanks to Riqui Puig’s second assist of the game to make it 4-0 to the visitors. The heat was getting worse, Alavés were done and ready to go home, but Barça continued to pass the ball with intent and attack well.
The fifth goal came with 15 minutes to go thanks to a brilliant team move: Frenkie De Jong made a genius run to the open space to receive the ball, then found Jordi Alba all alone on the left wing, and Alba found Messi with a perfect cross for the captain’s second of the game.
Barça finally decided to take a breath and wait for the game to end, and the final whistle came to end a truly impressive performance, both with and without the ball. Barça will now rest for a few days and then begin training for the Champions League restart in three weeks, and at least there is some hope for Europe after this game. Because it was REALLY good.
Alavés: Roberto; Aguirregabiria, Laguardia (Tachi 46’), Magallán, Marín; Méndez, Camarasa (Abdallahi 65’), Manu García (Fejsa 58’), Burke (Rioja 46’); Joselu, Pérez (Pere Pons 46’)
Barcelona: Neto; Roberto, Araujo, Lenglet (Semedo 50’), Alba; Vidal, Busquets (De Jong 58’), Puig; Messi, Suárez, Ansu Fati (Braithwaite 78’)
Goals: Ansu Fati (24’), Messi (34’, 75’), Suárez (44’), Semedo (57’)