Barcelona finally returned to winning ways after two consecutive blunders – one in the Champions League after their draw vs Slavia Prague, and the other in their defeat vs Levante in La Liga – and they’ve done it in style.
But even though a 4-1 victory does seem like a statement performance, a lot of it came down to the individual brilliance of Lionel Messi rather their cohesive tactical prowess.
Both teams opted for some changes ahead of the game. Ernesto Valverde decided to rest Sergio Busquets and Sergi Roberto replaced him in the middle of the park while Junior Firpo deputised for the injured Jordi Alba at left-back.
Samuel Umtiti also replaced Clement Lenglet and their now 17-year-old prodigy, Ansu Fati, started next to Antoine Griezmann and Messi in the forward line. Barcelona were deployed in their traditional 4-3-3 system.
On the other side of the pitch, we also saw some huge changes from the new coach and former Barcelona player, Oscar Garcia. The team were deployed in a largely unfamiliar 5-3-2 system, used for the first time this season, as opposed to their usual 4-4-2 which we saw in 64% of all of their games in 2019/20 La Liga campaign.
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