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Real Sociedad performance shows Xavi he still has work to do with this Barcelona side

Pride dented...

FC Barcelona v Real Sociedad - LaLiga Santander Photo by David Ramos/Getty Images

The Spanish top-flight title may have been won already but that doesn’t excuse one of the worst performances of recent years on Saturday night.

Real Sociedad made Barcelona look ordinary at Camp Nou and I don’t buy the ‘what do you expect’ type excuse.

You always need to finish a season strongly and Barca were so poor against La Real it was embarrassing.

Marc-Andre ter Stegen gets a free pass again for another brilliant 90 minutes where he can’t be blamed for the goals conceded.

A defence that didn’t have Ronald Araujo in it looked amateurish and that has to be a concern for Xavi.

FC Barcelona v Real Sociedad - LaLiga Santander Photo by Alex Caparros/Getty Images

One player dropping out of the starting XI can’t possibly make that much difference - his colleagues have to step up - but it wasn’t only in the back line where the hosts were under par, however.

A 10 minute period in the first half aside, Barcelona allowed their opponents - who hadn’t won at Camp Nou in decades don’t forget (it was 1991 when the Basques last left this part of Catalonia with all three points) - to dominate in most areas.

When was the last time that the likes of Sergio Busquets and Frenkie de Jong were so easily dispossessed? Where was the physicality that is a hallmark of their game when at their best?

Robert Lewandowski’s late goal made the scoreline respectable but it doesn’t tell anything like the full story because the truth is Barca were well beaten.

Like so many occasions previously, the width provided by Ousmane Dembele and Raphinha did little to worry the visitors.

Ferran Torres, bar his assist, and Ansu Fati did nothing remotely well, and it really does show up the lack of strength in depth that Barca have in their ranks.

FC Barcelona v Real Sociedad - LaLiga Santander Photo by David Ramos/Getty Images

Of course, it was all smiles after the match because we can all bask in the glory of a league title can’t we.

There’s the little matter of professional pride to be spoken about here, however.

Going off the boil suggests a problem with the mentality of certain players. Players that are supposed to be born winners. Who are relentless in their quest for perfection.

Not who just want to turn up and give a half-hearted performance because the job’s already done. Players like that don’t deserve to wear the shirt.

Put in some youngsters from the youth team and watch how much they value the shirt by comparison.

There’s a definite lesson to be learned from Saturday night’s excuse for a performance.

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