Every time I watched Barcelona, the ambiance was always electric for me. However, that electric setting in my head is fading slowly. Statements are made these days that the team is finished, they’re done or it’s over.
As a Barca fan, I wish I could disagree but the nature of Barcelona’s form recently dissatisfy the most. This leaves many in wonder whether this team would ever be the same again. There is no discussion about the fact that every teams best-cycle must come to an end at some point. Great teams are often judged by the utmost of standards they produce, and this teams excellent standards slipped lately.
The defeat against Bayern left a wound that is difficult to heal. It is true that there had been issues at that time such as the absence of Lionel Messi and Tito Vilanova struggling with cancer; it was still not an excuse arguably. That defeat set of the alarms in Barcelona pinpointing the major issues. One of them is the dependence on Messi. This dependancy surely has led to his current injury dilemma, which presents another major setback for Barca this season. Regardless, another major “demeanor” is the obvious terrible defense. Since the Bayern defeat, the complicated defense predicament is yet to be rectified.
Barcelona look logically naive, defensively exposed, lacking that eccentric spirit, this look like a pale shadow of the side in which have dominating world football for the past five years. In the past, defense wise, the right and left backs Abide and Alves brought different, equivalently effective, elements at full-back. With Puyol past his peak and no one to effectively cover Abidal’s position, Barca now looks like they can be exposed easily by not just the top sides, but also mediocre ones too. High stress and pressing is one of the key aspects that allowed Barca to be successful, yet this had been extraordinarily absent lately. Barcelona needs to be faster, fitter and fresher as they flaunted untiringly during their prime. When Barca is Barca, very few sides can keep up with the Catalans.
Xavi is getting old and has surely lost some of his touches; there is no doubt about that. His influence on Barca’s passing dynamics is vital and that is on the decline. Cesc on the other hand is often a tangential figure, as Martino is unsure of what his strongest position is or doesn’t play Cesc in his right position making things more difficult.
To be fair to Barcelona, succeeding La Liga is no easy task last season; surely some credit must be given. It also important to stress out that it’s not exactly a major crisis. Barcelona is still a very good side but those insufficiencies mentioned above can taunt Barcelona if nothing is done. Until clear initiative is done in regards to this side’s defense as it is the main issue, issues will still persist and go on.
During those magical five years, Barca brushed aside virtually every team they played against. It is sad to see Barca’s passing game diminishing day by day. As a culé, it hurts me to write that this sides domination is over and this could have been an article written with the conclusion of 5 words; “That spectacular Barcelona are back.” But instead, Barca’s days are over.