Football Club Barcelona returned back into action after the early Copa Del Rey exit against Alethic Bilbao. This time, it was the La Liga Santander Match Day 22 against Deportivo Alaves. Alaves welcomed the Catalan Giants on a cold night at the Mendizorroza stadium.
It was an another stagnant attacking display by Barcelona, who were given a lifeline in the dying minutes. Frenkie De Jong’s calm finish helped Barcelona to register only their 2nd away game victory in the Spanish Liga. Barca’s newest signing, Ferran Torres registered his 1st assist for the club.
Being the second last team in the league’s table, Alaves was expected to easily lose against the Catalan side but surprised the football pundits with a inspired performance, both on and off the ball. Alaves managed to hold Barcelona for 87 minutes, which in it self a big achievement.
Scoreless First Half
The game started with both teams trying their best to adapt in the cold conditions of Mendizorroza. As the game went on, Barcelona had a good grasp of the possession with managing over 80 percent of the ball. This however, didn’t result to any clear cut chances.
Alvaes being a physical side, bounced on all the loose balls and kept their defense compact making it difficult for Barcelona to score. Alaves right back, Martín Aguirregabiria pick pocketed Barca’s young talent, EZ Abde on serval occasions, causing him to switch flanks with Ferran Torres.
All in all, the first half was extremely frustrating for the Blaugrana as they found it difficult to cope up with the physicality of the Deportivo Alaves’s players.
Lifeline For Barcelona
The second half begun with Barca being on the backfoot as Alaves launched attack after attack. The closest Alaves came to scoring when their star striker, Joselu headed wide a whipped in cross from the left flank. Had this gone in, the story of the match would be entirely different.
Barcelona however, continued their dormant attacking display as the kept 75 percent of the total possession but nothing to show for it. Some attacks led by Lukk De Jong, look promising but were easily dealt by the Alaves Defense.
Barcelona’s possession play rewarded them finally as the deadlock was broken at 87 minutes by Freknie De Jong. De Jong placed a first time pass played in by Barca’s dream signing, Ferran Torres. This was the first and the only goal of the game.
The match was concluded as Barca registered their 2nd away win.
It was a frustrating night for the Barcelona faithful, who were enraged by Barca’s attacking gameplay. Their night was however saved by Frenkie De Jong who scored a goal on his return to Liga action after a hamstring injury.
Frenkie de Jong scored the only goal of the games as Barcelona just about got the win against relegation-threatened Deportivo Alaves.
— The Goalpost (@TGoalpost) January 23, 2022
@DeJongFrenkie21 No estas en tu mejor nivel a todos le puede pasar. Pero de algo no se debe dudar y es de tu talento. No queremos al De Jong del Ajax, queremos a un futbolista mejor. Eres presente y futuro #FrenkieNoSeToca#Barca pic.twitter.com/gXiDJci5BP
— Barcelona univerSo7 (@Dalis2605) January 23, 2022