Pedri and Lionel Messi were the only positives as Barcelona once again stumbled against Cadiz CF in La Liga – this time at the Camp Nou.
Barcelona’s miseries continued as they stuttered to a 1-1 draw with Cadiz CF, just a few days after their 4-1 bashing by PSG in the Champions League. It was Cadiz’s first point in Camp Nou since 1997 while Barca will be disappointed to have failed to take advantage of Atletico Madrid’s dropped points as the Rojiblancos continue to hold their advantage.
While Cadiz may have gotten lucky with a soft penalty late on in the game that allowed Alex Fernandez to level the scoreline, Barcelona were the main culprits as they failed to make use of their 81% possession. They had a whopping 20 attempts on goal, only four of which were on target.
It was Lionel Messi who initially broke the deadlock in the 32nd minute through a penalty that was won by Pedri. Apart from that, the Catalans never looked like finding that all-important second goal, often appearing wasteful in the final third. Their futility ultimately caught up with them when Clement Lenglet’s silly foul saw the ref point towards the spot, with just one minute remaining on the clock.
The result certainly doesn’t bode well for Ronald Koeman, especially after a 4-1 defeat to PSG as well as a 2-0 defeat to Sevilla in the Copa Del Rey. And here, at The Hard Tackle, we will take a closer look at the Barcelona players in their performance over Cadiz this weekend.
Marc-Andre ter Stegen: 6/10
Marc-Andre ter Stegen was called into action only once and that happened to be the penalty in the last minute. He couldn’t do much to stop it as he continues to be disappointed by the defensive support around him. Another misse clean sheet for the Barcelona goalkeeper.
Sergino Dest: 6.5/10
Sergino Dest put out a decent shift on the right-back slot, using his speed and dynamism to keep the Cadiz defence occupied. His forays down the flanks didn’t exactly translate into clear-cut opportunities, but it was enough to keep the opposition at their toes. He was subbed off late in the game, with Oscar Mingueza replacing him at right-back.
Gerard Pique: 6.5/10
Gerard Pique did reasonably well to keep the likes of Alvaro Negredo at bay. He was solid particularly in the air, winning four of his five aerial duels. The veteran centre-back also tried to influence the build-up with his driving runs forward and was a threat from set-pieces. Unfortunately, they weren’t enough to seal a victory for his team.
Clement Lenglet: 3/10
Lenglet has given away 3 penalties this season, more than any other player at Barcelona. pic.twitter.com/dPGkV0yf8E
— Barça Universal (@BarcaUniversal) February 21, 2021
In hindsight, Clement Lenglet had a decent defensive game, making four clearances and absolutely dominating in the aerial department. However, a poor bit of defending late in the game saw him clumsily catch Sobrino inside the penalty box.
It was foolish and simply unacceptable for a player of his calibre and experience, especially given the context of the game. He deserves to get benched following a string of error-prone performances this campaign.
Jordi Alba: 6/10
Jordi Alba faced problems penetrating the Cadiz backline due to the lack of space the opposition offered with their deep defensive line. Certainly not a positive display, but it wasn’t particularly an awful one either as the full-back remained solid defensively.
Frenkie de Jong: 6/10
Frenkie de Jong played a key role in Barcelona’s approach play as always. However, there was a lack of incisiveness in his forward passing today as Cadiz defended deep. The young midfielder rotated possession very well but he was under very little pressure as the opposition invited the Catalans to attack.
Sergio Busquets: 6.5/10
Sergio Busquets produced a positive display in the number six role. He looked proactive in the middle of the park, often trying to win back possession for his team. His experience and leadership helped Barcelona dominate the proceedings but the Spaniard was let down by the lack of creativity from players around him.
Messi with the goal
Pedri with the assist.
Barcelona 1: 0. Cadiz
— Tobi Samuel Snow (@iam_foleymessi) February 21, 2021
Excluding Lionel Messi, Pedri was the only real positive for FC Barcelona in this game. The 18-year-old was a spark in the final third, showing a lot of tenacity in pressing while also creating multiple chances. He even scored a goal that was ruled out due to offside and it was a rather dull move from Ronald Koeman to take him off during the final phase of the game.
Ousmane Dembele: 5.5/10
Ousmane Dembele offered the dynamism and pace as usual, but they were almost redundant against Cadiz’s deep block. The Frenchman desperately needs to provide more penetration in his dribbles, if he is to remain a regular starter in the team, especially when Ansu Fati returns to action.
Lionel Messi: 7/10
Lionel Messi was head and shoulders ahead of other Barcelona attackers in terms of creativity and overall influence in the game. He was the main threat for the Cadiz defence, as he looked determined to find the back of the net and give his side a two-goal cushion after converting a penalty around the half-hour mark. Unfortunately, it just wasn’t his night.
Top scorers in La Liga this season:
Leo Messi: 1⃣6⃣
Luis Suarez: 1⃣6⃣
How different would things be if Barcelona had kept them together one more year? pic.twitter.com/dOOWrblcrk
— B/R Football (@brfootball) February 21, 2021
Antoine Griezmann: 5/10
Antoine Griezmann had a frustrating game as he struggled to make too many scoring opportunities in the final third. He often got isolated, failing to produce any useful opening for himself. He was subbed off midway through the second half, in favour of Martin Brathwaite.
Miralem Pjanic: 6/10
Miralem Pjanic replaced Busquets to add more energy and spark in the approach play. However, it wasn’t enough to break the shackles of the Cadiz defence.
Martin Brathwaite: 5/10
Martin Brathwaite came on for Griezmann in the 65th minute but provided absolutely nothing to the table. His runs in behind the backline were poor.
Francisco Trincao: 5/10
Francisco Trincao replaced Pedri during the final phase of the game, but couldn’t add much to the proceedings.
Riqui Puig: N/A
A late replacement for Dembele. Didn’t play enough to warrant a rating.
Oscar Mingueza: N/A
A late replacement for Dest. Didn’t play enough to warrant a rating.