Frankly this was not a good performance. Or a bad one . Just a decent display, which was determined by a spectacular overhead kick goal from Rafinha.it was a display that showed the positives and negatives of luis Enrique side,
who produced some devastating attacking play but again troubled by the absence of key players and ofcourse failed to close down defensively conscious Granada team.
The visitors sat back in a 5-4-1 formation and tried to absorb pressure from the champion, made it diffcult for barcelona attacking trio to dismantle.
The hosts should be commended not criticised because they detected the match, stopped the Andalusians from getting any equalizer and took all three points to themselves at end of day.
Then again, it was a frustrating display where individual mistakes—particularly when it came to finishing—stopped Barcelona from getting the sort of result fans are accustomed to racking up against lowly visitors as quoted by bleacher reporters.
|There were plenty of positives for Barcelona to take from the game, not least Rafinha’s effectiveness in front of goal. He has scored five this season now, netting every time he has started with the exception of the club’s unsuccessful trip to Celta Vigo.|
Here's the moment of the match
Possibly the only moment of note from the whole game. It was a very good finish from Rafinha, a goal worthy of winning the game.via daily mail. Suarez fluffed his lines again, when Lionel Messi fed him, but Rafinha nudged the ball on to Neymar, who hit the post. When the rebound flew into the air, Rafinha was there again to acrobatically power it home.
They've not shone tonight
MSN have not been their usual all-conquering selves tonight. I suppose even Messi is allowed the odd off-day.via daiy mail
|The best opportunity of the first half was wasted by Suarez, who was sent through on goal by a fine Javier Mascherano pass but inexplicably dilly-dallied instead of pulling the trigger and was caught by the defence.|
|Suarez had shown off his Golden boot before the game started. He didn’t have his shooting boots with him though as Barça were frustrated in the first 45 minutes.|
|However, Granada’s attitude was a throwback to what visiting teams would do while Pep Guardiola was on the bench here.|
The reason it worked was because Barcelona’s master lock-picker, Andres Iniesta, is out injured.
When defences are as tight and compact as Granada’s, the Blaugrana need their captain to help cut through the lines, usually teaming up with Messi to unbalance the rearguard and probe weak spots.
Denis Suarez has quality, but asked to do the same job against Granada, he played it too safe and didn’t go for the jugular enough.
That means the only area of concern Barcelona will need to ponder is how to best cope with this strategy if it is used against them again while Iniesta is out.
One solution would be to use Messi in a more central role to do a similar job to the Spain international.
However, Luis Enrique denied Barcelona found it hard going because Iniesta was not here.via bleacher reporters
|“It wasn’t a brilliant game on our
part, but it falls within the normal range,” said Luis Enrique
afterwards. “These type of games need freshness and finesse, we lacked
those at times.”|
That was in part the coach’s fault for allowing several squad members four days off, although he shouldn’t be blamed for that because an extra rest could pay huge dividends later in the season—or even as soon as Tuesday’s Champions League clash with Manchester City.
|Roberto said, h/t Sport: “Granada had all their players in their area and so it was very difficult.|
“We dominated the game and despite not scoring a lot of goals we had clear chances and they had none. If we had scored a goal in the first half quickly then it would all have been much more open.”
He is right in that Granada played in a way that few clubs have tried recently at Camp Nou. Recently it seems the best way to try to hurt Barcelona is to press them high up the pitch, which is generally how teams who have come away with points from this stadium have achieved it since Luis Enrique took over.