Barcelona’s defence is a worry
Sergio Busquets got it spot on after the game when he said he was worried about the amount of goals Barcelona are conceding and spoke of a need to be more solid.
The champions have conceded seven in their last five games, have seen Samuel Umtiti and Clement Lenglet pick up red cards, while Gerard Pique has been guilty of some poor errors.
It could have been even worse too but for goalkeeper Marc-Andre ter Stegen. The German put in a fine display to preserve all three points against Real Sociedad.
At Leganes Thomas Vermaelen came in at left-back and had a night to forget. Barcelona B youngster Juan Miranda had been tipped to feature but didn’t even make the squad.
Barcelona’s defence was a huge strength last season but has been vulnerable so far. An improvement is needed against Athletic Bilbao and Tottenham or Barcelona will drop more points.
Few positives for Valverde on embarrassing night
There’s no getting away from the fact that this was an embarrassing result for Barcelona, and Valverde can take few positives from the match.
Looking on the bright side we saw a brilliant goal from Philippe Coutinho which made you wonder why he’s been starting so many games on the bench.
Luis Suarez and Jordi Alba got a bit of a rest, and Vermaelen’s performance may have helped Valverde decide who will replace the suspended Umtiti against Spurs.
Real Madrid’s defeat to Sevilla later in the day also helped as Los Blancos missed the chance to move three points ahead of Barcelona.
Otherwise this was a poor display, a deserved defeat, and the lack of response from Barcelona after they had gone behind was another cause for concern.
Barcelona’s squad still lacking despite summer investment
It was a busy summer for Barcelona with several players leaving and Lenglet, Arthur, Malcom and Arturo Vidal all coming in and looking like smart signings.
Yet Wednesday’s defeat suggested Barcelona’s squad still has its flaws. Digne’s departure means there’s no specialist left-back to Jordi Alba. Vermaelen looked out of place out wide, and Valverde clearly didn’t trust 18-year-old Miranda. The teenager has been training with the first team but has said he’s not ready to play for the senior side yet.
On the other flank Sergio Roberto and Nelson Semedo are still sharing the right-back slot, while Pique’s poor form raises the question of who can replace him in the squad.
Up front Munir came in for Luis Suarez but offered very little. Malcom was thrown on for Ousmane Dembele late on but could not help Barcelona find an equaliser.
It’s still early days and the new signings need time to adjust, but there are still clear deficiencies in the squad.