La Liga 2019/20

Peyroteo

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Same story of the past years, a bunch of players nowhere to be seen when you have to run twice harder to win the game, a bunch of guys bought and criticized even when they leave 200% on the pitch (Semedo, Rakitic and Griezmann) and things stay the same, because our dinosaurs can look like Sunday league players since they won so much they're untouchable in this team.
And now they're buying Pjanic who might be even worse than this version of Rakitic or Busquets when it comes to defensive transitions.

Lautaro and Pjanic are two very good players, at their best both world class imo but I can't think of two players Barca need less. I think it would be a disastrous summer if those are the two players they go for.

Pjanic is pretty much the same player as Busquets but worse defensively and Lautaro is another central attacker that would be coming into a team that already has too many forwards that like playing through the middle. Barca are very lucky to have two great talents in Fati and Puig coming up to make up for the lack of apropriate signings.
 

Pretzels81

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This might sound dramatic, but perhaps Messi won't win another liga with Barcelona. 2019-20 is for Madrid (they will look silly if they won't win tomorrow) and too much deadweight for 20-21 (Piqué, Umtiti, Alba, Busquets, Vidal, etc.).

He will be 35 by 2021-22. Unless they sign Lautaro, Puig and Fati become Top players, and De Jong finally adapts, Barca could be trophyless for the next couple of seasons. It floors me that they will sign Pjanic (another MF) and not a RB, and LB and a CB.
 

RoyH1

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I still can't believe Nolito's miss.



Madrid still to play Getafe and Athletic, very tricky ones. In whichever case I don't see them winning all games left.
Agree. Plus they simply have not been that consistent in the league this season. They will definitely lose points along the way. Problem for Barcelona is if they will be able to capitalize on that. I don't think they will. Barsa is in for a world of hurt when Messi retires though
 

MaxiPaxi

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Just seen the Barcelona result. Surely real have sealed this now? Happy to see Ramos picking up another trophy. Absolute legend.
 

SirAnderson

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Just seen the Barcelona result. Surely real have sealed this now? Happy to see Ramos picking up another trophy. Absolute legend.
Seen in now too. Yeah, only if Ramos is there to see Real over the line, otherwise, Barca need to mess up one more time. :D
 

baywatchfan

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Today, Quique Setien learned (the hard way) what is rule #1 at FC Barcelona. You DO NOT (under any circumstances) substitute Messi or Suarez :nono:
 

FootballHQ

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Barcelona won just six away games all season, just two in their last eight. There's your problem right there.
 

Johnny Love

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The way Barca can splash cash around without improving the team or addressing any weakness in mind blowing.
 

amolbhatia50k

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This might sound dramatic, but perhaps Messi won't win another liga with Barcelona. 2019-20 is for Madrid (they will look silly if they won't win tomorrow) and too much deadweight for 20-21 (Piqué, Umtiti, Alba, Busquets, Vidal, etc.).

He will be 35 by 2021-22. Unless they sign Lautaro, Puig and Fati become Top players, and De Jong finally adapts, Barca could be trophyless for the next couple of seasons. It floors me that they will sign Pjanic (another MF) and not a RB, and LB and a CB.
It's dramatic but it could happen if they keep going for random mediocre managers and expect excellence in return. It's a really poorly run club that has, from a position of incredible strength, slowly stuffed themselves into an uncomfortable corner. Everything about them is stale right now. Wasting record fees on players everyone felt weren't worth it. Slow, turgid, lifeless football. And out of their depth managers who are picked based on a mysterious criteria only they get.

Madrid are well placed right now IMO. They actually look like they're building something. They don't have a Messi, but they have a vibrancy and fluency to their style of play, even if they too have many flaws (many ageing stars). Most importantly, they haven't been wasting money on big names for no reason and have actually got a very good manager.

So yeah, I could be wrong. But there's a subtle difference in the direction of the two clubs. Even if things can change very fast, maybe Barcelona will become a top team again first, however as things stand, Madrid look to have the momentum and a bit of spark.
 

amolbhatia50k

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The way Barca can splash cash around without improving the team or addressing any weakness in mind blowing.
They're like us of the last 7 years just with the cracks being papered over all the while. Don't think they're ready at all for the post Messi era. Surely they can't sustain the recent level of spending?
 

Daysleeper

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I still can't believe Nolito's miss.



Madrid still to play Getafe and Athletic, very tricky ones. In whichever case I don't see them winning all games left.
We have Atletico Madrid next and we’re in mediocre form. Let’s see, but they’re gonna do it and credit to them if they do.
 

Daysleeper

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So how good is Zinedine Zidane the manager? I recall the caf unanimously thought he was a fraud last year.
He’s good but this is the worst Barca side of the last ten years. Whichever team wins the league would be the weakest title winner of the last 10+ years or so.
 

amolbhatia50k

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What on earth is up with this Arthur Pjanic deal ? Seems like a strange move. Swap talented albeit flawed 23 year old for a 30 year old playing in a weaker league? They need more engines in midfield if anything. Maybe their president supports Real Madrid or something.
 

Acrobat7

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What on earth is up with this Arthur Pjanic deal ? Seems like a strange move. Swap talented albeit flawed 23 year old for a 30 year old playing in a weaker league? They need more engines in midfield if anything. Maybe their president supports Real Madrid or something.
They are setting up their balance sheet to break even for the fiscal year. Kicking the can down the road.
 

Acrobat7

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Achraf has decided, at 90%, not to return to Real Madrid.
He also says that his priority is to play but no one from Madrid have called him, neither Zidane nor anyone from the board.
He believes that in Madrid he has little chance of playing.3 offers, Bayern Munich, City and Inter Milan.
He doesn´t like City´s offer so much because of the sanction. The player loves Inter Milan. He believes(Edu Aguirre) that Madrid will not sell him

Is the link to Bayern not just lazy journalism? He is absolutely not suited to Bayern’s setup (433 or 4231) but perfect for what Inter wants to do (343).
 

carvajal

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Is the link to Bayern not just lazy journalism? He is absolutely not suited to Bayern’s setup (433 or 4231) but perfect for what Inter wants to do (343).
The Bayern rumor has been coming for a few weeks now.
I read it in some ITK and Catalan newspapers but you are right that it does not make much sense.
In addition, his agent said there was no offer from Bayern (although he also said he wanted to return to Madrid).
About Edu Aguirre (the journalist), I trust him more since he is a super friend of Cristiano, although he may have used the rumor to complete the news
 

Mark_Barca

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He’s good but this is the worst Barca side of the last ten years. Whichever team wins the league would be the weakest title winner of the last 10+ years or so.
Has your views changed on the manager?
 

Cait Sith

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Sack your back-to-back league winning manager who was top of the table third season in a row to hire Real Betis reject because he has a Cruyff poster hanging over his bed.

Well deserverd misery.

This isn't even the bottom. Wait until Messi and Suarez are both done around the same time.
 

Mark_Barca

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Sack your back-to-back league winning manager who was top of the table third season in a row to hire Real Betis reject because he has a Cruyff poster hanging over his bed.

Well deserverd misery.

This isn't even the bottom. Wait until Messi and Suarez are both done around the same time.
Made this post elsewhere recently..

Looking at the starting 11 tonight and bench, I think it might be a long time before Barcelona are up there competing for CL titles.

Pique - 33

Alba - 31

Vidal - 33

Busquets - Nearly 32

Messi - Nearly 33

Braithwaite, Roberto and Araujo start.

Suarez - 33

Rakitic - 32

Semedo, Dembele and Umtiti not good enough.

Squad is not strong and they don't have the cash required for a revamp.

Major issues ahead.
 

carvajal

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Umtiti :lol:
Players who can not or do not want, aging squad, a terrible president, Griezmann, Dembele, Coutinho, Messi turning 33, a coach who will not continue ...A colorful horizon for Madrid :drool:
I should wait for the Karma issue but I can't help it.
Or Ansu Fati will be a marvel like Riqui, as well as Trincao and Pedri, + for being argentine and Messi they will sign Luka Romero and he will be excellent too :(
 

giorno

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Sack your back-to-back league winning manager who was top of the table third season in a row to hire Real Betis reject because he has a Cruyff poster hanging over his bed.

Well deserverd misery.

This isn't even the bottom. Wait until Messi and Suarez are both done around the same time.
Nah, they improved under Setien, Valverde clearly had to go. The mistake was not replacing him last summer, although the big issue for barcelona is that they have a lot of doubles that are hard to fit together and lack certain types of players that would make things easier for the manager tactically. They need a great manager to get this team to be a top, top side, despite the individual talent
 

Cait Sith

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Nah, they improved under Setien, Valverde clearly had to go. The mistake was not replacing him last summer, although the big issue for barcelona is that they have a lot of doubles that are hard to fit together and lack certain types of players that would make things easier for the manager tactically. They need a great manager to get this team to be a top, top side, despite the individual talent
Improved in losing to Madrid maybe. 17 games in charge. 3 losses, 3 draws and out of the 11 wins 7 were by a 1 goal difference. The multiple goal wins were all against Eibar, Mallorca and Leganes. 3 of the bottom 4 teams. Basically if a squad of Barca's quality had no coach at all, they would achieve the same results (beating bottom teams, grindin wins against middle class teams and drawing or losing against better teams).
 

Daysleeper

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Has your views changed on the manager?
It’s getting there :)

But I still feel like it wasn’t wrong to fire Valverde. I’m also not sure Xavi is ready to come in for next season. I don’t hate Setien though, that first half was the best we’ve looked since the break. The subs were bad though but our depth sucks right now.
 

PedroMendez

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In hindsight (for me; other pointed it out before the transfers happened) their transfer business has been really bad. Every club in the world in going to suffer, when three 100m+ signings have zero impact.
I think Frenkie is going to be a fantastic player, but currently he is used in questionable ways and probably needs a bit more time and a better manager. Even their slightly less expensive transfers are all a bit underwhelming/big downgrades. Arthur, Malcom, Paulinho, Semedo, Andre Gomes, Arda, Alcacer, Umtiti. Either they are already out again or they play because there are little alternatives. Maybe I am missing someone but Suárez and ter-Stegen in 14/15 seem to be their last big hits. (there are several transfers that were alright, but nobody expects that Lenglet/Firpo/Arturo Vidal would turn into key players.

At the time I rated some of these players (and I still do) and always thought that their squad is very strong.
 
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FootballHQ

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In other news Villareal in fantastic form, 3 points off 4th if they hold on for the win.

Every time I look at their team I forget they signed Paco Alacaer, another goal for him today. Another who was quickly spat out by Barca because he didn't have their "DNA" or whatever. They let him go and then sign Braithwaite 12 months later.
 

Pep's Suit

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Barca somehow wasted €350m on Coutinho, Griezmann and Dembele but then thought it's a good idea to hire a puppet / Cruyff fan as their coach. If anything they should go after Allegri now or they totally waste Messi's last 2-3 seasons.
 

giorno

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Improved in losing to Madrid maybe. 17 games in charge. 3 losses, 3 draws and out of the 11 wins 7 were by a 1 goal difference. The multiple goal wins were all against Eibar, Mallorca and Leganes. 3 of the bottom 4 teams. Basically if a squad of Barca's quality had no coach at all, they would achieve the same results (beating bottom teams, grindin wins against middle class teams and drawing or losing against better teams).
Barcelona under Setien: 13G 9W 2D 2L 29 points 23GF 10GA 27.04xG 12.10xGA 2.23 PPG
Barcelona under Valverde: 19G 12W 4D 3L 40 points 49GF 23GA 33.71xG 20.36xGA 2.10 PPG

Valverde had Suarez and Dembele, Setien largely had to make do without Suarez

Most striking is how the team clearly played worse with Valverde but was consistently bailed out by individual talent, while they're playing better with Setien but individual talent is lagging
 

FootballHQ

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Have to remember most sides are petrified of playing at Camp Nou due to the Messi factor so home form will always inflate a manager's stats at Barca.

Since he's come in they've lost 2-0 at Valencia, dumped out of Copa Del Rey at Bilbao 1-0, lost 2-0 at Real Madrid and had the two draws since restart. Always have a tough game at Villareal who are in amazing form currently so another away game they could easily drop points in.

I could actually see some logic in the appointment as Setien's Betis team did play some lovely football at times over last two seasons so as short term measure they could've come up with worse. Weren't they thinking of appointing Henry at some stage?

Seems members of the board have got it into their heads that all they need to do is appoint Xavi and it will be the Guardiola era all over again so they're keeping the seat warm when he decides he's ready.