Barcelona showed plenty of character by inflicting a heavy defeat on Cadiz, with Robert Lewandowski being the standout performer.

Barcelona showed they are a serious team and probably stern contenders for the UEFA Champions League and La Liga titles this term with a victory over Cadiz, which was full of character. Xavi Hernandez had taken the risk of making wholesale changes to his otherwise winning formula, which eventually yielded results.

The Barcelona manager decided to risk their recent momentum but somehow found a way through a challenging Cadiz side. In the end, the team showed they are much more than their strongest lineup, with those coming in getting a taste of Xavi’s project ahead.

The first half ended with Gerard Pique and Gavi among those impressing. The second half was something else, with Frenkie de Jong opening the scoring around the 56th minute. Between the first and the second goals, Xavi made some changes, including bringing on Robert Lewandowski, who starred eventually.

Lewandowski got the second for the team and provided the assists for the third and the fourth. Barcelona’s otherwise flawless second-half performance was dimmed by a supporter falling unconscious in the stands, later deemed serious enough for a stretcher and ambulance to arrive. Here’s how the Barcelona players fared in their four-goal win over struggling La Liga side Cadiz.

Marc-Andre ter Stegen: 6/10

Amazingly, ter Stegen did not have a save to make during the game, which showed the level of threat Cadiz posed. The Barcelona goalkeeper was commanding in the box and dealt with whatever little the opposition had in store for him.

Hector Bellerin: 7/10

Bellerin looked nervous at the start of his debut but grew into the game as it progressed. The former Arsenal defender played a major role in the second goal’s build-up and will aim to understand the team’s dynamics better from here on.

Ronald Araujo: 6.5/10

Araujo put in another performance that is beginning to look typical of his style. He did not have much to do, but he fared well when he was needed on the ball.

Gerard Pique: 7/10

Xavi will be delighted at Pique’s response after sidelining the defender for most parts so far this term. The veteran centre-back proved a point and showed his manager he is willing to contribute to the team’s cause at the highest level.

Alejandro Balde: 8/10

Performances like these will only increase Balde’s confidence in nailing down a permanent place on the team. He was perhaps Barcelona’s best player on the pitch, as he performed his defensive duties well and was a tremendous force in the final third.

Frenkie de Jong: 7/10

Like some others in the side, de Jong made a clear point on the pitch by opening the scoring for Barcelona. However, after the strike, the Dutchman somewhat withered away from the intense nature of his team. But overall, the performance was much more encouraging.

Sergio Busquets: 6/10

Busquets had one of his standard performances but will need improvements against a stronger team such as Bayern Munich next week.

Gavi: 8/10

Another fantastic display from the youngster, who seems to be growing in confidence with the responsibility he has with the team. Gavi was an intense athlete in the middle, ensuring the team recovered much of the ball and always looked to progress it forward while being heavily involved in at least two goals.

Raphinha: 7/10

Raphinha continued with his energetic performances and started by hitting the post early on. Despite his mixed bag display from that point, the Brazilian was involved in two goals for his team.

Memphis Depay: 5/10

Depay was the poorest performer in this starting eleven, with the need to improve his levels quite evident. He might again be resigned to the bench with the midweek clashes.

Ferran Torres: 5/10

Alongside Depay, Torres was underwhelming with his performance. Perhaps it is due to a lack of involvement this season, but the Spaniard looked shorn of confidence.

SUBSTITUTES

Pedri: 7/10

Xavi could have made do without Pedri, but the midfielder’s introduction improved the game’s intensity and Barcelona’s overall tempo.

Ousmane Dembele: 7.5/10

Dembele changed the attack’s dynamics by producing some exciting moves in the final third. He also got his name on the scoresheet with an injury-time strike.

Robert Lewandowski: 8/10

Lewandowski continued his goalscoring run, getting the team’s second strike. He also turned provider for the next two goals. The Pole is slowly turning into Barcelona’s talisman with every performance.

Ansu Fati: 6.5/10

An encouraging cameo from the youngster, who will see his confidence rise after notching the goal.

Marcos Alonso: N/A

Alonso made his Barcelona debut, but there was not enough time nor impact to warrant a rating.

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