His summer season spending spree was validated by La Liga and his new signings, together with Robert Lewandowski, begin work. The overhaul despatched them again to the highest of La Liga for the primary time since June 2020, and “Zavineta” (Xavi The truck, as his venture is affectionately recognized in Catalonia) picked up new passengers in heaps, with Camp Nou’s presence booming as soon as once more. However the thorn of their aspect, their Champions League failure over the previous seven campaigns, stays. And after final 12 months’s humiliating group stage exit, Tuesday’s 1-0 defeat by Inter Milan put Barcelona in a precarious place.
They welcome the Italians on the Camp Nou subsequent week, a match they must win, with Bayern Munich main Group C on 9 factors, Inter on six, Barca on three and the pointless Viktoria Plzen down.
After lavish investments in Lewandowski, Rafinha and Jules Condé, amongst others, there is no such thing as a excuse for failure – though Barcelona left the San Siro with loads of ammunition.
On Monday, Xavi insisted that La Liga was a greater competitors than the Champions League, which comes down to some key moments, small particulars, and had proved quicker than he anticipated.
A purpose was harshly rejected for handball by Barcelona and a penalty was denied when Inter was a defender. Denzel Dumfries Dealt with within the subject late.
In a sport of few clear probabilities, these moments have been decisive.
In a good protection by Inter Milan, the Catalan crashed right into a brick wall, leaving little room for Gavi and Rafinha.
doesn’t assist Osman Dembele, who has accomplished brilliantly this season, was at his inconsistent worst, his crosses tousled. It was solely when he bought a proper that Barcelona posed a risk.
Andre Onana is drawn out and might solely swing the ball inwards pedriMethod of the best way, to faucet the midfielder at dwelling. Nevertheless, the goalkeeper patted the ball into Ansu Fati’s hand on the best way to Pedri, and after seeing it once more, Slovenian referee Slavko Vincic disallowed the purpose.
Barcelona left the pitch livid as Dumfries was dealt with in stoppage time, however this time the official didn’t replay the incident on the pitch-side VAR display screen.
“I am offended. It is an injustice,” mentioned Javi. “The referee has to come back out and clarify himself as a result of I do not perceive something. (He) did not wish to give me a proof after the sport.”
Regardless, the factors at the moment are on the board and it turns the return to the Camp Nou right into a profitable sport for Barcelona. Every other end result would require them to beat Bayern, a crew they’ve misplaced 5 occasions in a row, together with the notorious 8-2 Lisbon batting line-up in 2019-20.
Barcelona have been hopeful that the squad’s transforming may result in the European ghosts of their previous being forgotten, however their journey to Milan reveals that it’ll not be as simple because it appeared.
(This story has not been edited by NDTV employees and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)
Subjects talked about on this article