The game: Atlético did not even force

We had praised the virtues of Atlético this season. But the Colchoneros didn’t really need to flaunt them. Already because this Barça has displayed a recurring offensive indigence and has hardly shown itself to be dangerous. Also because the Catalans offered the victory to the Madrilenians on a plateau with two consecutive errors by Gerard Piqué and Marc-André ter Stegen exploited by Yannick Carrasco. The Madrilenians had one or two hot situations to manage in the second half to preserve their advantage. They got there without much difficulty to win a fairly logical victory as the opposition was weak.


Atlético smiles, Barça collapses


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The players: Carrasco, in the oven and in the mill

He scored a brilliant goal by making poor ter Stegen pay for his adventurous outing 40 meters from his goal. But Yannick Carrasco was not satisfied with being decisive. He also did a remarkable defensive job, in particular to limit the impact of an Ousmane Dembélé stirring early in the match on his lane. The French died later. But he was still the least disappointing striker of a Barça where Antoine Griezmann and especially Lionel Messi completely missed their subject. If there is to be satisfaction in the Catalan camp, it came from an impeccable Clement Lenglet in defense and who could have scored without a Jan Oblak still imperial.

Icon vs scapegoat: how far will the Messi-Griezmann malaise go?

The X factor: If Ter Stegen is doing it too …

He has so often hidden misery in recent seasons. When Barça stammers his football, it is regularly Marc-André ter Stegen who allows him to take points. Not at Wanda Metropolitano where the German goalkeeper weighed down his people with this ill-inspired exit on Carrasco’s goal. He tried to cover a depopulated defense after the error of Gerard Piqué, guilty of a loss of ball in the camp of Atlético. Normally he gets there. But not this time …

The state: 11

This is the total of points obtained by Barça in their first eight La Liga games. To see Barcelona present such a meager record at this point in the season, you have to go back almost 30 years. It was during the 1991-92 season. Yet Catalan aficionados have reason to view the future with optimism. Because Barça had ended the season by winning La Liga. And the first European champion title in its history.

The tweet not to be overlooked

The statement: Ronald Koeman (FC Barcelona coach)

We had two very clear chances to equalize. It’s not much, I agree, but it’s always complicated to create a lot of chances against teams of this kind … (…) Like any coach, I am responsible. We know we have to improve results. We work, I try to put the best team available in each game … What more can I do?

The question: Can Barça fall even lower?

Losing to Atlético de Madrid is not dramatic. Even if, in this case, this had not happened to Barça for 20 La Liga games. All the series have an end and it seems quite logical, finally, that that of the Catalan club against the Colchoneros comes to an end at this precise moment. Because Barcelona are doing badly. He has been playing this stereotypical football so far from his DNA for several seasons. And his defeat at the Wanda Metropolitano is just another confirmation of this trend.

But the situation seems to get even worse. It is a finding that is essential at the start of the season when Barcelona have come through against their two biggest rivals, Real then Atlético. But beyond these two defeats, beyond this 10th place in the standings unworthy of his rank, beyond the problematic injury of Gerard Piqué, it is also Ronald Koeman’s inability to raise the bar that something to worry about. Because his Barça is not very different from that of Ernesto Valverde or Quique Sétien. To the point where one wonders which coach would be able to revive him.

The most worrying for the Blaugrana institution is Messi. The Argentine is certainly going through one of the worst times of his career. A blow less well, it can happen. Especially for a player who has been at the top for so long. But the Pulga seems to have not digested its hectic summer. This was especially felt at Wanda Metropolitano where he seemed at times detached and unable to get involved. And if Barça can no longer count on the man who carried him at arm’s length for so many years, it is not impossible to see him fall even lower.

What can push Messi towards Guardiola


Atlético smiles, Barça collapses



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