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Viktoria de Champions: chronicle, result and goals

BarcelonaThe Champions League anthem sounds like heavenly music again. Violins and butterflies in the stomach, with fans ready to fall in love every time Lewandowski celebrates a goal with his Hollywood actor laugh. In recent years the Champions League anthem sounded like the soundtrack to a horror movie, where you didn’t know if the hangman who would appear from inside a closet would speak German, French or Portuguese. Now this anthem is the sweet music that accompanies Barça’s return to the scene of the hardest traumas of recent seasons, that nightmare competition that kept children awake if they heard words like Roma or Liverpool. This is where you need to show that a page has been turned. It is in Europe where Barça must regain their pride and give their opponents nightmares.

And the first victim was a Viktoria Pilsen who already knew he was playing the role of lamb on the way to the slaughter (5-1). The Czechs already imagined that the match would be very long for them and that they would suffer against a Barça forced not to fail in their European debut, since a puncture at home against Viktoria would have meant traveling to Munich with homework to do. But the game allowed Xavi to climb to the top of the podium to tell the world that this team is hungry, with a thrashing in which the statistics speak for Robert Lewandowski’s dominance of the area. But the figures, too cold, do not speak of the exhibition of an Ousmane Dembélé who is managing to be forgiven for all the sins of the past. It looks like a completely new player, the Frenchman, key in the second goal. He left his soul to retrieve a ball before looping it and turning it into another gift for Lewandowski.

The new Barça is walking around Europe. He comes out very strengthened from a first day in which giants such as Chelsea and Liverpool have suffered and Bayern, of course, was in charge of showing Milan that they are still the favourites. The next day, in Lewandowski’s return to the stadium that idolized him, Barça will be able to measure against the Bavarians what their level of play is right now. What is the reality? It will be the test of loose cotton as the home game against Viktoria should be the easiest of the six in the group stage.

A new Barça will fly to Bavaria. A team that learns from mistakes, after scoring in the debut at home in the League against Rayo. Against the Czechs, the debut was a thrashing. The visitors were destined to be punished again and again by a brilliant Barça in attack but with some defensive lapses that could have complicated things if the Colombian Mosquera had not committed a clear foul before receiving a penalty from Christensen. Those little mistakes that serve Xavi to keep his students plugged in. There is always work to be done.

The Viktoria, however, could not live up to its name. He had no choice. He was like a frightened animal caught in the middle of a group of hungry lions, who are playing with their victim. Xavi, as expected, made some rotations to gradually add substitute players to the cause, such as Kessié. Or to prevent veterans like Jordi Alba and Gerard Piqué from feeling mistreated. The full-back started and the centre-back came on at half-time, enjoying the first minutes of the season in place of another member of the old guard who has more prominence than he could have expected, Sergi Roberto.

Pablo Torre’s debut

Xavi stirred up the team, but the protagonists were the usual ones. Men like Ousmane Dembélé and Lewandowski. Now, the first goal against a very defensive opponent came thanks to the scoreboard, when Kounde, who seems to be at Barça for life, headed Kessie for the ex-Milan player’s first Blaugrana goal, which He debuted as a starter. Then came the show of Lewandowski and Dembélé, so exuberant that they intimidated an Ansu Fati a little who revolutionizes the games when he is a substitute but who did not finish shining as a starter. Despite the defensive error that allowed the Czechs to score, the 3-1 at half-time was already a result that explained what was happening on the pitch.

Xavi took advantage of the second half to manage his squad in a positive way. Lewandowski, who scores goals with the same normality with which a postman deals cards, kept scoring and made a hat trick in his first European match with Barça. And Xavi gave 45 minutes for Piqué, minutes for a Ferran Torres who was responsible for scoring the fifth goal of the game and gave the young talent Pablo Torre his debut in an official match, to make it clear to him that it was a good idea that don’t leave on loan He will be a privileged witness of the Blaugrana crusade to regain respect in Europe. For now, the first episode of this story is exciting. The trial by fire, however, will be next Tuesday in Munich.

  • FC Barcelona: Ter Stegen, Sergi Roberto (Gerard Piqué, 46′), Christensen, Koundé, Jordi Alba, Kessie (Pablo Torre, 85′), Frenkie de Jong, Pedri (Gavi, 75′), Dembélé (Memphis, 75′ ), Lewandowski and Ansu Fati (Ferran Torres, 66′)
  • Viktoria Pilsen: Jindrich Stanek, Milan Havel, Lukas Hejda, Ludek Pernica, Jemelka (Holik, 86′), Lukas Kalvach, Pavel Bucha, Jan Sykora (Pilar, 79′), Adam Vkanova (Cermak, 78′), Jhon Mosquera ( Jirka, 79′) i Tomas Chory (Fortune Bassey, 66′)
  • Gols: 1-0 Kessié (13 ‘), 2-0 Lewandowski (34’), 2-1 Sykora (44 ‘), 3-1 Lewandowski (48’), 4-1 Lewandowski (67 ‘) i 5-1 Ferran Torres (71 ‘)
  • Referee: Lawrence Visser (Belgium)
  • Yellow cards: Pernica (4′), Mosquera (27′), Chory (56′) and Jemelka (62′)
  • Red cards: None
  • Stadium: Spotify Camp Nou
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