Two rounds in La Liga have resulted in 5 goals, two clean sheets, and six points. After two matches in La Liga last year, Barca had scored one goal, conceded one and had just one point. At that point Barcelona had just played the qualifying round for Champions League. Now they have won two Super Cup titles. Those days they questioned the coach, the committee and the sporting direction, which everyone supports these days. It’s day and night in only one year. A complete change. You start as a champion in everything, and lead La Liga after two rounds. Anyhow I was more comfortable last year after a loss in Numancia, and a tie at home against Racing. The one point told me more than the six points Barca has gained now.
The first 45 minutes against Getafe were quite bad. And this time you can’t use excuses that they parked the bus in front of their goal. Michel’s team was better for an hour. Not because of the absentees, but because of those present. Barca played the ball around very slow. Few combinations and many players kept the ball without passing. Was there no value in the participated players? If you think so, you’ll be wrong, since the key players can’t always play. And if they did, you could see that their integrity and effort had an influence. I know very well that Messi, Iniesta and Alves are very good. And I know that the best was decisive in the end.
Chygrynskiy, without mistakes
The remarkable thing was that the new arrival that played in the most reasonable way. Chygrynskiy played without mistakes and performed the most basic task : passing the ball to a teammate. Those around him could not say the same. You could watch the difference between him, who is new and really concentrating on his work, and others who have been here for a long time, but are not quite on guard, even if it’s inadvertent. Once more, to be new can be easy, but it’s difficult to maintain. Generally because of a simple problem with pressure and attention.
You could have seen what I am trying to explain, better if it had not been for the line that divides the post, inside and outside of the post. Neither Iniesta, Messi nor Henry started the match, while Jeffren and Pedro did. It’s true, just as well as it’s true that you can’t blame the boys when Getafe had two balls on the post. That happened because Barcelona as a collective lost the ball. Simply because they did not treat it like they can, that is what they should do, no matter who’s playing or not. Six points out of six, yes. But with hidden lections.
And tommorrow comes a difficult match. Inter-Barca. Inter and Barca should advance to the next stage, even if no one can look into the future. The most important issue is not who that advance or if they end on 1. or 2., but rather which one is most cautious, again, it’s more difficult to reamain at the top rather than reach it, when it comes to the other opponents: Kazan and Dynamo. Both press and fans, in Milano and Barcelona, will most likely look on Ibra and Eto’o with close eyes. For the coaches the issue are not which of them that scores but rather the effort they can get out of them, and how they contribute to the team through the season.
An Improved Madrid
In Holland there’s a saying: “Your neighbours grass always seems greener than yours.” Transmitted to football, it seems to be like your opponent always are better then you. As an example: If you in advance believe that Ibrahimovic won’t be better than Eto’o, or that Real Madrid will do it better than Barcelona. This has just started, and until the World Cup it’s no stop. Real Madrid are better than last year, which they should. The money and investments increase the distance between the big and small, it’s true, but the map can’t always guarantee sucess. If so, the highest bid would always win. With less investments Barca would still be my favorite. For instance they have less investments since they already have their pillars and give the young players a chance. They already have a squad. I certainly don’t believe a small squad will cause problems, despite there’s a foundation in their way of playing. Another thing is what level they will play on.
The ‘FIFA virus’
Hopefully the 0-2 victory over Getafe was not the best, the last 30 minutes ended in two goals and 3 points. Certainly there will be more matches in the future with the ‘FIFA virus’. And suspensions. And injuries. Or just necessary rotations. You’ll meet a lot of difficulties during the season, specially when it ends in May because of the World Cup in South Africa. But if everyone do what they are told, these will become less.