If the odds of a Real Valladolid result weren’t great coming into the game, Clément Lenglet’s third-minute goal certainly didn’t help their prospects.
Though the guests managed to equalize in the 15th minute, Barcelona ran away with a 5-1 victory in their La Liga matchup. Lionel Messi recorded a brace and he was joined on the scoresheet by Luis Suárez and Arturo Vidal.
This tactical analysis will examine how Barcelona’s tactics allowed them to unbalance the Valladolid defence and create opportunities to run in behind. We’ll also provide an analysis of how Valladolid’s stagnant attack routinely failed to look beyond the safe and short passes, even in instances of numerical superiority and great positioning.
Ernesto Valverde set out his Barcelona side in their traditional 4-3-3. Sergio González countered with a 3-4-1-2, hoping to outnumber Valverde’s men centrally and account for runs from the midfield.
Ansu Fati received an early birthday present, earning the start on the left just days before his 17th birthday. Suárez and Messi rounded out the forwards while the midfield featured Sergio Busquets in his typical hold midfielder role with Frenkie de Jong and Vidal in front of him.
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