Even though Barcelona have won all their fixtures in the Spanish La Liga, they are still facing a few hitches right at the start of the season.
It is true that we are not seeing the merciless Barcelona that was famous for demolishing its opponents through total domination of ball possession and killer passes that are near to 100% conversion rate.
To be fair to the Catalans, injuries have marred their main players. Their captain, Puyol, and their star defender, Gerard Pique, are both on the side-lines.
Javier Mascherano and the newly signed Song have not still gotten used to playing with each other and consequently have caused defensive problems at the back line.
The Little magician, Andres Iniesta, is also out and without him Barcelona’s midfield adventures have always seemed to be out of sorts and always less creative.
This list of injuries coupled with some tension between Messi and Villa have somehow contributed to their less than ideal performance on the field. But it is true at the end of the day, results matter and that is exactly what Barcelona have done so far with
their perfect start to the season; accumulating maximum points from their first 6 league games of the season.
Barcelona is also a team in transition. Their new coach Tito Vilanova has a philosophy and style of his own and of course this has its affect on the players.
In the Guardiola era, the Catalans had one style of play and one mission in mind - dominate the tempo and the possession of the game as long as possible and win because of that.
We witnessed in the game of the Champions League semi-final against Chelsea last year that the system completely failed and the Londoners foiled the coup of the Catalans.
Chelsea set up two lines of defense that just couldn’t be penetrated. No matter how long Barcelona kept the ball or dominated the game with their pinpoint precision, they just could not pass through the defensive lines of the Blues.
Under the management of Tito Vilanova, Barcelona now seem to have learned that mistake and as a result of that experience, La Blaugrana are now working on a plan B.
Of course their constant passing and domination of the ball possession will be at the heart of this new system but if it doesn’t work then they will be seen shooting the ball frequently to catch the goalkeeper off guard, trying long balls and passes with
Apart from the things that are happening on the field, the club is also doing well financially.
They have made record profits last season without winning any major trophies. Commenting on the financial stability of the club, President Sandro Rossel said “We are in an excellent position on the field and off the field."
Now that Real Madrid is struggling in the league and is already eight points behind Barcelona, it is a sweet music to the ears for the Catalans. Soon the club will also be bolstered by the recovery of the likes of Iniesta, Pique and Puyol, players who are
currently not performing in the first-team because of their respective injuries.
The club’s start of the season problems will soon be a thing of the past.
With the chance of nearly securing La liga title if they win their El Clasico match on this coming Sunday, Barcelona can then concentrate their energy on the Champions League. From here on, the future seems bright for the Catalans.
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