FC Barcelona – La Liga Lost Supercopa de Espana to Athletic Club
Despite taking the lead twice in the Supercopa de Espana final against Athletic Club, Barcelona managed to lose in extra time and miss out on the trophy.
Antoine Griezmann stood out by scoring a brace, yet the Blaugrana faced several fitness, as well as mental, issues both in defence and attack throughout the final.
Let’s take a closer look at Barcelona‘s main problems, which Athletic took advantage of to grab a historic 3-2 victory.
Athletic committed 24 fouls compared to the 15 conceded by Barcelona players who recovered just 62 of the 140 lost balls, while Marcelino‘s men managed to recover 73 of the 131.
The Blaugrana registered 68 percent of ball possession, passing the ball 840 times compared to Athletic’s 338, but lacked creativity in attack.
Two of Athletic’s three goals came from individual errors in defence as Jordi Alba lost Oscar de Marcos in the build up to the Basques’ first, while neither Clement Lenglet nor Antoine Griezmann managed to prevent Asier Villalibre from scoring his team’s second.
“We don’t talk [to each other],” said Griezmann after the game. “There are very important details which define a game.
“When the ball goes out or when you have to start running, someone has to shout. Sometimes they do shout and sometimes it doesn’t happen.”
Despite Lionel Messi‘s return to action, Barcelona produced fewer shots (10) than Athletic Club (12), while both teams registered four shots on target each.
Distance between the lines and lack of communication upfront were some of the most eye-catching issues in the final.
Frenkie de Jong‘s impressive efforts were not enough, as Barcelona couldn’t find ways to free up space for Pedri to receive the ball between the lines.
Meanwhile, they failed to break down Athletic’s low blocks with their game looking very static in attack despite dominating the ball.
A group of experienced players who are close to winning a trophy should not lose concentration with two minutes to go.
It was obvious that Athletic were the team that wanted it more, with Barcelona players lacking a competitive attitude and sacrificial mentality after scoring their second.
Barcelona lacked a spirited leader to boost their morale after Athletic netted a late equaliser.
When Inaki Williams put the Basques ahead in extra time, the Blaugrana seemed unable to react mentally.