Has Barça thrown the season away?
A disastrous game. A lost party. A tie that was face. A lost tie. The meeting against Roma today in the Champions League round was the worst that Barça has played so far this season. And not only that. I do not remember such a fateful match for the Catalans in many, but many months. I think that there has not been, at least not so much repercussion. And not only for the game (which also), but because they have not known how to keep in favor a score that had been on track at the Camp Nou (1-4) and not react to the opponent’s goals.
An opponent who was neither the City of Pep Guardiola (another of the best in Europe, but also eliminated today) or Bayern, or Real Madrid. It was the Roma: fourth in the classification of the Serie A and the most affordable opponent of all the hype of Champions. We all seemed happy when his name appeared on the paper, but now we all cry (figuratively). For the third consecutive year, this time in the hands of Ernesto Valverde , Barça says goodbye for the third consecutive year of European competition. Three times. Three disasters.
The motives? There could be many: the disappearance of Messi ; the mistake of Iniesta; Semedo’s lineup, which has left much to be desired throughout the match … What’s more, only Ter Stegen and Piqué would be saved. And that says a lot. The azulgrana only have been able to defend themselves of the Italians. They have not attacked, they have not kept the ball more than 10 consecutive passes on their feet and, therefore, have not known how to play.
But now I wonder. It’s time to take stock. With this elimination in European competition, and the most prized of the disputed, has Barça thrown the season away? My answer at this time is ambiguous. The season has been long and there is still much to compete and much to gain. It has only been a match, although it is true that the most decisive of the year. Barça has more than half a league in their pocket and disputes the Copa del Rey final on April 21. However, it is true that this has been a hard stick for Valverde. Everything looked good. Many pointed to a possible triplet, which has now been diluted.
It only remains to reflect, to learn from mistakes and to know that without Messi and his magic, Barça must also be big in Europe. Something that, right now, many of us question and that Valverde has to solve. How? That is already his job.