Barca 3 – Atletico Madrid 0

 

The 2010/11 FC Barcelona team tonight inscribed their place in the history books of La Liga after securing a 16th victory in succession tonight against Atlético de Madrid.  Not to mention we scored 58 goals in those games, and conceded just 6!   Records are fabulous and I am very proud of achieving this, but almost more importantly for this season, we were clinical in getting another 3 points.  Still, I think this Barca team should be remembered for always, and they will be, but having your names in records books helps you achieve immortality.

We were never really under pressure in this match and dictated it from start to finish.  Flores left Forlan out from the start, and went with a 4-5-1 formation hoping that Merida, Assuncao, and Tiago could suffocate the midfield.   His plan was somewhat working as we were struggling a bit to find space in the final third, but at the end of the day, we still found a way to win.

Villa was looking in the mood early on with 2 decent shots in the 7th and 9th minutes that went just wide.  The breakthrough finally came in the 16th minute, when Messi scored his 22nd league goal of the season with a signature style goal.  He got the ball just off center on the right, cut in onto his favorite left foot, left 3 defenders for dead and then calmly slotted the ball past De Gea.

We continued to dominate possession and Villa had another decent shot on target in the 17th minute.  He got the ball on the left, cut in onto his right foot, and you knew as soon as he did that we would be having a strike on goal.  The power was good but it ended up just before the near post.

In the 20th minute Messi nearly made it 2.  Alves put a lovely weighted through ball, which Messi ran onto, but he never really steadied himself and took his shot a bit of balance which saw it not get the curl he wanted and ultimately fly past the far post.  In the 25th minute, Pedro had a nice shot on target when Alves stole the ball just outside the box, sent Pedro in, but De Gea saved comfortably enough with his legs on the near post.

Just 3 minutes later, Messi did make it 2.  Villa got the ball from Pedro at the top of the box, turned towards goal, then tried to play Messi on the right.  Antonio Lopez read the pass, took a touch then tried to blast it clear, but Messi very clearly anticipated the defenders plan and blocked his clearance, then touched it past De Gea.  This is not the prettiest goal Messi will ever score, and one he and most will forget sooner than later, but, it is a goal to admire simply for its effort.  He read the game, anticipated the movement of the ball, and never gave up on the possibility of getting the ball in a dangerous area.  Brilliant.

Atletico had their first proper chance in the 42nd minute when Aguero did some really nice work in the box.  He showed great strength to knock Pique off the ball, cut into the box, changing direction a few times, but just before he got his shot off, Abidal put in a great block.  Man, how good has Abidal become for us!

Villa very nearly got his name onto the scoresheeet in the 42nd minute after he curled the ball past De Gea, but just beyond the far post also.  He may not be slotting them in week after week, but this boy is giving 100% effort, providing assists, and working his socks off.  And that gets no complaints in my books.

Just as the 2nd half started, we saw a particular movement that sort of sums of Messi.  Yes, he is the most talented, genius player in the game today, for my money, ever.  He loves to score and attack, but he fundamentally believes in teamwork and hardwork.  Aguero was on a breakaway, which was looking dangerous, then this flash of blaugrana comes flying back to defend, and no, it wasn’t Pique, or Abidal, or Alves, or any of the more predictable names, it was our number 10.  He sprinted back, stole the ball off Aguero, ending their attack, but then had the composure to just knock the ball past an oncoming Atletico player.  This got him huge chants from the crowd, and it was as deserved as any of the goals, if not more.  It’s a credit to the fans they laud this sort of behavior as much as goals because the players respond to it and appreciate it.

The game had its moments from there on out, but nothing I am going to go into much detail about.  Atletico had a super chance in the 52nd minute, that needed Pique to save it off the line, but other than that, we were never threatened badly.  In the 72nd minute, De Gea pulled out a super save to deny Messi his hattrick, but he could not do the save just 7 minutes later.  Messi slipped a ball into the box for Villa, who timed his run perfectly, took a shot on goal on the slide, which Godin got back to block.  However, Messi again showed great anticipation and hunger to follow the movement of the ball, and steal it off Godin’s block to poke the ball home to make it 3-0.  Godin had a chance a bit later, but, that was about it.

This game wasn’t a classic, and was not as entertaining as some of the previous years, but, we played quite well, with a lot of effort, and got 3 more points.  Few can argue that Messi is man of the match tonight and I do not want to sound repetitive, but I feel honored and privileged to be able to watch this player play football like an art, week in week out.  I know some are obsessed with the World Cup wins, and don’t get me wrong for a moment, I think Maradona was unbelievable and the way he basically single-handedly won trophies for Napoli and Argentina has huge merit.  But, I think Messi is the best player to ever kick a football, and I believe (also pray a bit) he will continue to do so as a Cule from now until his last ever touch of a football.

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8 Responses to Barca 3 – Atletico Madrid 0

  1. Caleb says:

    I enjoyed the write-up bboy!

    I didn’t get to watch the game live but reading this definitely helps. I’m going to see if I can’t find the game somewhere.

    Anyway, thanks for the work.

    Also, huge win for Barca. Hopefully we can continue to extend this winning streak and heap tons of pressure on Madrid not to slip up another time. Making the record near unbeatable would be great as well.

    • barcacentralroger says:

      Totally agree regarding the record – aside from the fact that Real will win most of their games to season-end meaning that we will have to win nearly every game, now that we have the record broken we need to keep winning to make it unassailable. Hopefully that will motivate the squad.

  2. bc9jaCulé says:

    Great win! And a historic one too!

    After the match, I humbly reflected back, took a refreshin’ and fulfillin’ picnic down my memory lane and realised the enormity of what this Barça has achieved since we Pep-ped up about two-and-half seasons ago.

    Like;

    Assemblin’ this unassailable team,

    playin’ the game of football in it’s purest and most appealin’ form,

    scorin’ loads of goals with reckless abandon,

    the clinchin’ of so many trophies all across the world as though all we had to do was pluck them from a tree at the entrance of Camp Nou,

    the five stretch Clasico wins despite our rival’s non-stop intimidatin’ acquisitions of both players and coaches,

    the generous thrashin’ of opponents both locally and all across Europe irrespective of their footballin’ pedigree,

    raisin’ the bar further higher by shatterin’ records after records in this era of stiffer competitions from opposin’ teams, and many others.

    Truly, every culé livin’ this phenomenal moments should feel extremely honoured and priviledged and be thankful b’cause several culés have supported this great club through the thick and thin since its inception and we are the ones witnessin’ the ultimate achievements — not because we deserve it, but simply b’cause we’re lucky to be livin’ as culés as this definin’ era wears on. How fortunate we all are!

    Força Barça!!!

  3. Mike M says:

    bc9jaCulé I agree, This Barca team really is something special and to be able to witness it is purely amazing.

    Glad that Barca have created a new record and another Messi hattrick. Brilliant

    Thanks Blau for the good report. appreciate it

  4. Noureddine says:

    Great post B’boy thanks for the effort. It’s always sweet to beat a record but it’s even sweeeeeeeeeeeeter if that record was Real Madrid’s.

    I really enjoy watching Barça playing under pressure that shows you what our defense is made of, I was amazed AGAIN by Mr Abidal footwork composure physical fitness calmness and above all his vision, I actually start to believe we might be possessing the second best CB in the world, plus Piquè’s block off the line was a heart stopping, Dani was being Dani it was a great performance after all but I was surprised by Lord Pep’s comment abt the game that he wasn’t satisfied by the team’s performance, we played against the fourth best team in la liga and I guess the team did just enough to secure the win.

    Messi, what else can anyone say about MESSI that hasn’t been said already, his genius leave me speechless out of words, the guy destroys tears up heavy weight teams single handedly, to the point it doesn’t surprise us what Messi is capable of anymore just cause HE IS MESSI, if the guy flies over Camp Nou like Super Man I don’t think I’d be surprised, why???..cause he is Messi.

    I’m just fortunate to be a Barça fan, a Barça fan since I was merely seven since the days of Romario Nadal Ferrer Coman Luis Enrique Guardiola and Co’s, this team been through tough times tough losses by the hands of the what so called Los Blancos, I’ll never forget the scene of Fc Barcelona Players “our boys” clapping the Real Madrid players way into the Bernabeu and even worse losing 4-1 on that day, but they rose up and conquered the world and humbled the Los Blancos for five times in a row “hopefully seven by the end of the season”, and made us proud to be FC BARCELONA fans.

    • barcacentralroger says:

      Love the fact that Abidal went on a run forward, lost the ball, pelted it back to recover the ball, and suddenly the whole of the Camp Nou was singing out his name!

      But as Blau rightly highlighted, for me the best moment in the match was tracking back to take the ball off Aguero, then slip the ball past the onrushing Athletico player, and head back down towards the opposite goal – genius and a hardworker.

      I think Leo is now one goal ahead of Ronaldo Jr in the Pichichi charts (Ronaldo got a brace today).

      • Noureddine says:

        Well actually Messi and Ronaldo are even in the Pachichi chart according to Marca, knowing that the Pachichi is given by Marca based in their stats not LFP’s, and this confusion goes back to Ronaldo’s free kick against Real Soceidad that it got deflected off Pepe’s head, it was credited to Pepe then by LFP but Marca thought otherwise, and their count matters cause The Pichichi is their award, though I dont think it would come down to that single goal.

  5. FCB-Parbo says:

    It couldn’t be any sweeter than shattering RM’s record by Messi’s hat-trick. This is history and his name will be chant forever. MESSI-MESSI-MESSI. What else, what else???

    BBoy, I had missed the moment on Messi rubbing the ball from Aguerro. I’m so pissed now, but thanks for putting it down.

    Nour, you’re right on the matter of the pichichi chart. I wonder why the LFP doesn’t give the award as the footbal organisation. Marca is not neutral, duh!!

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