Preview - Barcelona vs Girona 25 Feb

Started by aaguerra90, Feb 23, 2018, 05:11 AM

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Match Day 25
Barcelona vs Girona
Sunday, February 25th, 2018
03:45 (GMT +8)
Stadium: Camp Nou

Last five matches: D W D W D
Average goals per match: 2.5
Average goals against per match: 0.4
Top Scorer: Lionel Messi (20)

Last five matches: W L W D D
Average goals per match: 1.4
Average goals against per match: 1.2
Top Scorer: Cristhian Stuani (13)

Barcelona are top of the La Liga table by seven points but they are not playing the fantastic football fans are used to. Barca are getting the results they need but have yet to dominate their opponents like they have in the past. They boast some of the best offensive players in the game but they are prone to defensive lapses. It seems that when Barcelona win it's more because of their individualities rather than team play. Proof of this are the recent draws to Espanyol and Getafe; if Lionel Messi is off, and Andres Iniesta or Luis Suarez don't pick up the slack, Barcelona play some stale football.

Girona have been the Cinderella to La Liga's ball. Tipped to be a team who would fight for survival at the beginning of the season, Girona have managed to collect quite a few scalps and sit comfortably in eight place--closer to European football than the second division. Pablo Machin and his men have put together a remarkable season. They have taken 11 points from their last six matches, with the only loss in that span being 1-0 away to Sevilla.

The first ever league meeting between these sides was back in September. Barcelona emerged victorious in that match 3-0. Ernesto Valverde will not want to open a window for Atletico Madrid to believe they stand a chance for the title. The Basque coach will likely field a full-strength squad even after their duel versus Chelsea in midweek to ensure there is no slip up.

Prediction: Barcelona 2-0 Girona


Half Time: 4:1
Full Time: 6:1
Shots: 19:7
Shots on target: 12:3
Corner Kicks: 5:2
Possession: 59:41

Barcelona thrashed Catalan neighbors Girona 6-1 as their three superstars all got on the score sheet today.

It was an electrifying opening five minutes as Girona got off to a dream start. In the 3rd minute, miscommunication in the back by Barcelona allowed Cristian Portu to break into the box, dribbled past Marc Andre ter Stegen and finished from a tight angle. The ball hit the front post, then the back post and went into the net. Beautiful goal.

The lead would be short lived though as Luis Suarez found Barca's equalizer two minutes later. Lionel Messi received the ball at midfield and played it into space to Suarez. The Uruguayan raced into the area and beat goalkeeper Yassine Bounou at the front post. With this assist, Messi becomes the all time La Liga assist leader.

In the 30th minute, Ivan Rakitic sent a long ball to Suarez. 'Lucho' settled it first time for Messi and the Argentine looked certain to finish with his right foot. Instead, he cut back to his favored left foot, dribbled two Girona defenders, and finished with a low shot to the back post.

Messi scored his brace six minutes later from a smartly taken free kick right outside the area. He deemed that he was too close to bend the ball over the wall and into the net, so he fired low, anticipating that the players in the wall would jump. Bounou could do nothing to stop the shot and it was now 3-1 Barcelona.

The front trio of Messi, Suarez and Philippe Coutinho created a magical Barcelona fourth goal. Messi started the break, racing towards the Girona goal. He sent a pass to Coutinho into the box and the Brazilian one touch passed to Suarez who only had to tap the ball into an empty net.

Coutinho scored a scorcher in the 65th minute. He received a pass from Suarez at the top of the box. Turned his defender, and released a vicious right footed shot that hit the back post and went in. Coutinho is beginning to mesh well with his South American teammates, it's a shame he cannot take part in the Champions League for Barcelona.

Suarez bagged his hat trick in the 76th minute following a cross from Ousmane Dembele. The Frenchman was played in behind the defense by Rakitic and he picked out Suarez in the box. Again, all Suarez had to do was get his foot on the ball and volley home.

Barcelona temporarily extend their lead over Atletico Madrid to 10 points, with the Madrid side playing tomorrow. Girona drop to 9th place in the table, with no danger of relegation but their dream of European football next season now seems more difficult.

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