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Three talking points from Getafe 0-0 Barcelona

A point gained on a horrible night for the league

Getafe v FC Barcelona - La Liga EA Sports Photo by David S. Bustamante/Soccrates/Getty Images

Barcelona probably could have done without having to play their opening La Liga game of the season at the Coliseum Alfonso Pérez, a ground where they’ve traditionally struggled against Getafe, and without the added ‘bonus’ of 31 degree heat at 9.30pm local time.

For long periods of the first half particularly, the usual narrative continued as the hosts consistently employed the dark arts to literally and metaphorically knock Barça out of their stride.

The final result was probably a fair reflection of the performances from both sides, and here are three talking points from the game.

Spanish officials must be held accountable but Raphinha should know better

Getafe CF v FC Barcelona - LaLiga EA Sports Photo by Florencia Tan Jun/Getty Images

It’s long been contended that the officiating in Spain has been sub standard, and that was absolutely in evidence in this match.

Though the decision went in Barça’s favour, not booking Ronald Araujo for catching the ball was one of many, many decisions that the referee and his assistants got wrong on the night. Not giving Barça a late penalty was just about the most unbelievable decision ever made on a football pitch.

Furthermore, how many times was Damián Suárez ‘making a back’ for Barça players, with others ‘leaving their foot in’ which went unpunished?

Notwithstanding that, Raphinha should know that he has to be much, much better than to throw out a flailing elbow in full view of the assistant.

His immaturity didn’t just put the Blaugranes at a disadvantage in Sunday’s game, but will force Xavi to shuffle his pack for the next couple of matches.

Lewandowski must have service

Getafe CF v FC Barcelona - LaLiga EA Sports Photo by Mateo Villalba/Quality Sport Images/Getty Images

He certainly knows where the goal is, but Robert Lewandowski isn’t anywhere close to being a mobile No. 9.

He’s not quite ready to be put out to pasture just yet, but he heavily relies on the service from the wide players or through balls from midfielders, and both were sorely lacking on Sunday night.

Even when they did reach him, he wasn’t sharp enough to make it count.

It’s also worth touching on the fact that Getafe employed a rigid five-man back line which was always going to be difficult to break down, even more so when they went to a back six.

Barca do need to find a way to defeat this sort of tactic in future or else it makes them very easy to defend against — and better teams than Getafe will make them pay.

Imperious De Jong

Getafe v FC Barcelona - La Liga EA Sports Photo by David S. Bustamante/Soccrates/Getty Images

Perhaps it’s the cover that Oriol Romeu provides, or maybe it’s that the shackles are now off since Sergio Busquets left…

Whatever the reason, Frenkie de Jong was imperious against Getafe.

Defensively sound, his bursts forward were a feature of Barça’s attacking play and gave the visitors impetus and drive just when they needed it.

His passing was on point and he rarely misplaced one, whilst his associative play was first class.

Transitionally, Barça were much better when the attacks went through the Dutchman, who was very clearly the Man of the Match.

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