Nothing Fazes Ansu Fati
Ansu Fati has already made headlines this season and conjured up plenty more on Saturday night at the Camp Nou with a goal and an assist in a sparkling full debut.
The 16-year-old has already become Barcelona’s second-youngest debutant and then the club’s youngest La Liga goalscorer. On Saturday he went one better by adding another record to his collection:
There were less than two minutes on the clock when Ansu strode on to Frenkie de Jong’s square ball and slammed it past a diving Jasper Cillessen, giving the Dutchman no chance.
Yet that didn’t faze him either. Five minutes later he wriggled into the box, picked out De Jong and suddenly had his first assist for the Catalan giants too.
He could have scored more too in a superb first half. Two efforts flew fractionally off-target, there was a penalty appeal, a sombrero flick over Wass and all that was before half-time.
Ansu Fati had 13 touches inside the opposition box during his 60 minutes on the pitch vs. Valencia, scoring one and providing an assist.— Squawka Football (@Squawka) September 14, 2019
Only Carles Pérez (16 vs. Real Betis) has had more in a LaLiga game this season. pic.twitter.com/VzjmbdoP1o
What a prospect.
Barcelona find their best midfield
Ernesto Valverde again left Ivan Rakitic on the bench for the visit of Valencia and went with a midfield of Arthur, Sergio Busquets and Frenkie de Jong.
Barcelona have yet to find the best mix this season and have an abundance of midfielders, but the trio look to be the best option in midfield.
Frenkie de Jong enjoyed his best performance in a Barcelona shirt. He teed up Ansu, struck his first Barca goal and did not put a single pass astray.
Frenkie de Jong vs. Valencia:— Squawka Football (@Squawka) September 14, 2019
• 54 passes attempted
• 54 passes completed
• 1 shot
• 1 goal
And an assist to cap a perfect performance. pic.twitter.com/t5HLeyuuaj
Meanwhile, Arthur was handed his first start of the season and simply picked up where he left off against Osasuna last time out, looking completely comfortable throughout the match.
The Barca midfield’s pressing, passing and movement was far too much for Valencia, and this trio will surely only improve once they get used to playing together.
Luis Suarez looks sharp on his return
Luis Suarez replaced Ansu on the hour mark on his return from a calf problem and took hardly any time at all to find his first goal of the season with a well-taken strike.
The Uruguayan added another before the end of the match with another clinical finish, and looked extremely sharp despite spending the last few weeks on the sidelines.
His goals also saw him move up the standings when it comes to Barcelona’s all-time goalscorers:
Luis Suarez moves to third place in all-time Barcelona goals in La Liga pic.twitter.com/AvOZ6cvazm— B/R Football (@brfootball) September 14, 2019
Barcelona are still without Lionel Messi but Suarez’s return, and his goals, come at a good time with a tricky trip to Borussia Dortmund up next.
Suarez will need no reminding that his goalscoring record away from home in the Champions League currently is pretty woeful, but he will head to Germany fresh and firing after Saturday’s outing.