The mood in the Catalan capital may be at an all time low or at the very least, close to it. Barcelona recently lost to Juventus, which also means that they will finish second in the Champions League group and now have to face a much stronger lineup of teams.
This morning’s papers are focusing on the issues with Ronald Koeman’s system and the scary draw ahead of us. SPORT say the Dutchman has received a blow.
The players don’t seem to be comfortable with his preferred 4-2-3-1 formation and the use of the double-pivot. It seems to be limiting what the squad can do and they feel the traditional 4-3-3 would yield them more success.
So far, Koeman hasn’t exactly shown to be that adaptable when it comes to the pure structure of the team but maybe now, with the locker room voicing their opinions, the coach finally pulls the trigger.
Mundo Deportivo, on the other hand, talk about the upcoming knockout stages draw in Europe.
As a direct consequence of finishing second behind Juventus, Barcelona can now only face teams that have finished first in their respective groups. That bunch includes Bayern Munich, Liverpool, Paris Saint-Germain and others.
Needless to say, all of those opponents would be tricky to beat. How far can this disjointed and struggling Barcelona get in the Champions League?
Only time will tell.
Ilaix Moriba speaks following his first screamer goal for Barcelona
Ilaix Moriba has scored his first goal for Barcelona in stunning fashion. The teenager came on as a substitute against Osasuna and linked up with Lionel Messi to get off the mark for the club.
After enjoying a wonderful time with the first team in this past month and a half, making his senior debut against Cornella in the Copa del Rey, the midfielder has gone from strength to strength. He made
Moriba replaced Sergio Busquets in the 67th minute for his fifth appearance of the season. In the final moments of the game, linked up with Lionel Messi, feinted onto his left foot before unleashing a fierce left footed shot into the top corner.
Ronald Koeman was full of praise for the youngster after his cameo against Sevilla in the Copa del Rey in midweek, and his faith in the Barça B youngster has once again paid major dividends.
The 18-year-old’s goal sealed an eighth away win of the league campaign for Barcelona, after Jordi Alba opened the scoring in the first half with a magnificent finish from a stellar lobbed through pass from Messi.
“I will never forget this moment until I die. This is where Ansu scored too. He is like a brother to me, he is from the family,” said Moriba in the post-match interview (via BarçaTV+).
Moriba added: “I want to dedicate this goal to my father and La Masia where I have learned a lot from.”
Barcelona grabbed all three points at El Sadar against a tough Osasuna side to move within two points of La Liga leaders Atletico Madrid. The Catalans will now be hoping that the Madrid derby tomorrow will help them close the gap at the top even further.
Ilaix is also confident that they still have a chance for the title: “La Liga isn’t over for us. We will fight till the end. That is the DNA they taught us at La Masia.”