45 minutes of Blaugrana paradise
For most of the El Clasico match, Barcelona seemed to dominate. The Catalan team was dominant throughout the first half.
From the beginning, it seemed like nothing was going according to Real Madrid’s intentions. Barcelona dominated the battle in midfield. The Blaugrana have a smooth progression of the ball when switching from defense to attack. Carlo Ancelotti’s army only chased the ball and only had occasional counterattacks.
Ronald Araujo pocketed Vinicius Jr. on the right wing, leaving the Brazilian player in a state of ball starvation. In the central defender position, Andreas Christensen and Inigo Martinez showed a commendable performance by stopping all of Real Madrid’s attacking efforts.
Most importantly, Gavi disrupted Los Blancos’ midfield as he won the ball back time and time again. Cancelo and Balde created space on the wings while Gundogan kept the team in rhythm with his genius ball coordination.
Xavi Hernandez’s army broke down the defense system of the Merengues boys. They hit the post twice and should have led 3-0 at the break.
Perfectly, the first half was like heaven for Barcelona. The Blaugranas couldn’t have expected anything more when they walked down the tunnel at the end of the first half. But that’s when everything changed.
Success or failure is determined by 2 touches of the ball
Barcelona’s inspiring first-half performance fell apart when the two teams walked off the field after the break. In particular, the match turned upside down after Carlo Ancelotti sent Luka Modric and Eduardo Camavinga onto the field.
Los Blancos created a new position in the second half. Suddenly, Barcelona were caught off guard and played back. Needless to say, they paid the price.
Jude Bellingham’s equalizer was simply brilliant. A long shot from outside the penalty area, with unbelievable accuracy, completely defeated the Barca goalkeeper. Marc-Andre ter Stegen really could have done better, but blaming him for the goal would be unfair.
The away team’s late goal was again credited to Bellingham. The young man again did the same thing he had done many times before, which was to put himself in the right position at the right time. With the ball at his feet and only the goalkeeper to beat, he took advantage of the opportunity with ease.
A bitter pill to swallow for Barca
There won’t be much to talk about in the Blaugrana dressing room after their painful defeat in El Clasico. It was excruciatingly painful, and the players’ reactions after the match said it all.
In theory, there isn’t much for Barcelona to think about. They are the better team, create more chances and have better tactics.
Failure to achieve individual excellence is not as damaging as total failure in football. Saturday’s loss was the first, but that defeat will be one of the hardest pills to swallow for the Azulgranas this season.
Dang Nguyen | 18:11 October 31, 2023