Jornada 8: Barcelona – Sevilla Liveblog

Starting XI: Valdes Alves Mascherano Abidal Keita Xavi Thiago Iniesta Adriano Messi Villa

Bench: Pinto, Fontas, Maxwell, Busquets, Cesc, Cuenca, Pedro


The lineup has me thinking Pep is going to go with the 3-4-3 tonight. Will we see the triumphant return of Fabregas? Cuenca’s second game for the first team? Jnice come out of the woodwork? Join me and find out.





  1. Don’t know why but I had a feeling Messi’d miss it.
    Since when did Sevilla become such a dirty team? Against Valencia the same attitude.

    1. Re: first line, same. Usually I feel confident when he steps up. Today I couldn’t even look. Between the feeling that it just wasn’t our night, the feeling that it was Varas’ night, and the disturbances before the penalty.

      Re: second line, it was still a hell of a defensive performance by them though.

    2. I’ll bet a tenner, right now and without blinking, that Real Madrid will thrash these guys 6-2 the next time they meet with their keeper committing a howler. Any takers?

    3. Wouldn’t be surprised, but whatever. We had chances, we didn’t take ’em. Maybe Madrid will be more clinical.

    4. I hope Messi’ confidence isn’t shot. I’m not taking anything away from Sevilla. They did what they had to, and maybe this will convince Guardiola that the 3-4-3 will not work against catenaccio. It’d be nice though if Sevilla showed the same high standard again Real, instead of, you know, making a video life they did last year. Oh well.

    5. Don’t know about the howler, but EE has a different style of play. Feels like an unfair comparison.

      Its all about the mindset. Coming off of a bajillion saves, The keeper is always gonna fancy saving a penalty. After conceding 4 goals in 40 mins, not so much..

    6. I just hate it when a keeper has the game of his life in only one game, basically, and then buggers off the next one. I especially hate it when that goalie does it against us. Remember Palop in the CdR back in 2010? The very next game he shipped 4.

    7. That’s football. You can’t blame a keeper for upping his game against us. Palop conceded 4 in the league, where Sevilla were happy to take the foot of the gas..

      Besides, it has happened before too. But in those cases we still scored. We have to look inwards..

  2. OH MY GOD

    I knew the keeper was gonna save it. He was on beast mode today. Especially with all the disturbances before he could finally take it.

    We’ll recover.

  3. TEARS 🙁 Messi hmmmm what can I say, horrible game from him in gerneral, but credit Sevilla.

    1. I was disappointed in Messi’s effort off the ball. He didn’t press defenders or chase after loose balls. (Not even the balls he lost). Either he wasn’t 100% or he didn’t give 100%, one of the two.

    2. I agree,I can’t fault him on the PK miss but his general play was just off to me. Yes Sevilla defended well but some of Messi’s passes were just questioning at times.

      He stepped up a bit in the 2nd Half and took initiative I can admit, but just wasn’t his best. This draw IMO would surely lift/wake Messi up.

      Again not bashing Messi since the whole team,especially midfield didn’t play well.

    3. Most of his passes in or near the box were intercepted. One of his worst performances. But OMG, Pedro was just criminally awful.

    4. Was reading somewhere on twitter that Messi’s pass accuracy was 68&. That was the worst ratio among all Barca players.

    5. I’m not entirely sure how you think Messi had a horrible game. The guy was behind every single one of our shots on goal. For all the talk in these parts for how “selfish” Messi has been, he played the team game very well today. If anything, Sevilla and their damned keeper were unbelievable.

      All I ask is they do the same to Real!

  4. boy oh boy, how depressing was that?

    can I go to “we’re all gonna die” panic mode?
    *just kidding*

    my God…that goalkeeper has a steel mentality…

  5. Positives:

    I liked Iniesta taking a lot more shots.
    November is approaching, which means Mega-Mode is going to start and continue for another few more months
    We are still the best when we play our usual line-up. 4-3-3 with two of Puyol, Pique and Mascherano along with Busi-Xavi-Iniesta.

  6. agreed messi chants at the end made me feel a bit better. we had our chances, but they all seemed a bit rushed/stressed; hopefully pep learns something from this…

    thanks for the liveblog…ciao

  7. Only saw the last half hour of the game. What went wrong? We looked to be playing well but Sevilla had great defense. Was it tactical setup Pep started with? Just wasn’t happening for Messi today either.

  8. As Ramzi pointed out, that save was half Kanoute’s. The longer the wait, the less chances of it being saved..

    1. Yeah, to me he is a better when he doesn’t have time to think. I’d be tempted to let Villa or Xavi take them.

    2. Villa takes them for Spain, and barring the miss vs. Honduras, seems to do pretty well at them.

    3. Never been a fan of Messi’s pk’s and I’ve said this several times on here. He relies on completely fooling the keeper… if the keeper guesses the right way, it’s not that difficult of a save because of the lack of power on the shot.

    4. This one was just the right height for the keeper although on replay it was hit with a little more power than i thought at first. The real problem was the amount of time he had to wait. You could see him concentrating furiously throughout the fracas but just knew that that would mean it wouldn’t be an instinctive effort. I can’t blame him for this one.

  9. I’m glad I’m not the only one who noticed that Sevilla’s tactic was basically to waste as much time as possible before the pk was taken. It worked to perfection. Messi missed it, topping off a poor performance, which may well shoot his confidence.

  10. Want to bet Varas has a stinker against Madrid and EE score a whopping 6 goals past Sevilla at home?

    Figures that my predictions would come true. Sevilla plays their heart out against us and Malaga roll over and take it up the A from EE in the first half, conceding 4 goals. :/

    Still proud of my boys. They gave it everything they could. Messi didnt track back at all today but was very influential going forward. I had a feeling he’d miss the penalty. Thats life I guess. Once again we may go into the Clasico behind EE.

    Seriously though I’d rather have Levante on top of the table. Heres to hoping for a Levante win tomorrow lol!

  11. It’s a strange world we live in when the “little” teams step up against us and put up a fight until the last minute but against EE they fall apart easily.

    Credit where credit is due, Varas had an excellent game and Sevilla should give him a raise and a monument in his honor because for them this draw must feel like they have won the CL and La Liga.

    Messi wasn’t bad contrary to what some may say but he wasn’t stellar either IMO.

    Iniesta was definitely a beast today..

    Oh well, better luck next time! 🙁

    1. Levante didn’t fall apart against Real Madrid. Neither did Racing.

      Sometimes teams play well and Barcelona or Madrid don’t win. All credit to Sevilla (and Varas especially).

  12. Well I’m sad that Barca didn’t win but it’s good to see that other teams can win or draw against the top two; it makes the competition more exciting. I’m getting a bit tired of high scorelines.

  13. This game was so frustrating while watching, but now that it’s over, I gotta admit, it was amazing, one hell of a game. I just hope they show the same spirit against Madrid. Oh, and Mou and the whole Madridismo have got some more ammo now, what with the penalty and two red cards in the added time!

  14. I believe culegirl3 talked about “little” teams like Sevilla, Valencia, and Villareal, where EE had a party goals against then…
    it’s the “bigger” teams like Levante or Racing who fought them to death on their own ground..

    but true, credit to Sevilla…

    1. I just really disagree with the notion that teams “try” against Barcelona but not Real Madrid. (Not that I’m implying this is what you are saying).

      It’s true that Madrid has a very good record against teams in the top 6 (aside from Barcelona), but I think that’s more to do with the fact that they are incredibly good at counter attacking so if a team plays with a moderately high defensive line, Madrid will probably score lots of goals. (Unless their opponents can keep 75% possession like Barcelona).

    2. yes, I agree with you..
      but I also understand culegirl3 pov..

      we needed 87 minutes to score the winning goal at Mestalla last season..
      and EE had 4-0 already in the first half.. 4-0.. it end 3-6 if I correct.

  15. Sevilla showed why they have conceded only one goal in their last five matches. They were very disciplined in defense.

    Messi for me had excellent match. He was the best player on pitch by a mile. His job is not to run all the time and he played defense as well. As for pk, it was good pk just the keeper was really on song today. After all, pk’s do not mean automatic conversion anywhere.

    I felt that Iniesta had a slightly poor match. Also Adriano was not that great.

    I like Keita but he is not useful when playing against teams which park the bus. The way Barca tries to break buses is by movement and quick passes and Busi would have been much more useful today.

    Overall though, our team played well but so did Sevilla defensively. And their keeper had a brilliant match. I was even more impressed by the keeper’s save against Villa as compared to penalty.

    Still wonder why Kanoute lost it so bad. He seems a calm player normally. From what i saw, he was trying to throttle Cesc which is a attempt to murder if done outside the pitch.

  16. Pep: “People don’t forget the moments of glory that Messi has given. It was a great gesture from the public.”

    Tips hat to the Camp Nou!

    1. He said I was George. I’m not that bald. I have too little time left to take that kind of crap, so I slugged him.

  17. Also must give credit to Sevilla,Caceres along with Varas had a cracking game for them. We’ve seen the reason why they are undefeated in the league so far. Waiting to hear our players reactions.

  18. Barcastuff Facebook: With 18 points, this is the worst start of the season for Guardiola’s Barça (19 points in 08/09 and 10/11, and 22 in 09/10) [via @pedritonumeros] #fcblive

    Doesn’t feel like it doh.

  19. @BarcaTheOffside With 18 points, this is the worst start of the season for Pep’s Barça (19 points in 08/09 and 10/11 , and 22 in 09/10) (via @pedritonumeros)

    @BarcaTheOffside Pep: “Cesc is not responsible for what happened, in any case, it should be Kanouté who speaks up.” (@e3_barca )

  20. Haven’t seen the game yet, but personally, I’ll be more concerned about Pedro when I watch. The way he’s going, he’ll regress back to Pedrito…

    1. I was calling for his sub @ the 60min mark but then ate my words when I saw it wasn’t his match either.His 1st touch was quite off and the majority of passes that went to him died. Needed Alexis9 in this game.

  21. I hate to just post a critical comment, but against Pilzen and now Sevilla, Pedro was simply awful. His passing, shooting, touch … just miserable. I never really worried about him before, but how many chances did he kill today? Someone please talk me down.

    1. agree with you and Kari..
      instead if becoming Pedro!!! with three exclamations, he’s regressing to Pedrito..

      he’s never a Pedro!! anymore since his injury last season, I think… just Pedro…
      we kept waiting and waiting to see P!! back, it’s worrying..

      and.. come back, Sanchez..

    2. I used to talk people down when they mentioned Pedro. Not anymore. He was horrible at doing basic things like passing a goddamn ball to the player next to him. #sigh

  22. and this :

    @DrRossoneri : Messi’s pass accuracy was 68%. That was the worst ratio among all Barca players.

    1. Maybe the reason for that might be that Messi was trying to make that final pass more often then others.

      I do think he messed up easy passes sometimes, same as rest of people (not xavi:)).

    2. thanks for the stat, sums up his game tonight. he wasn’t 100% for sure. but we can’t blame him alone, and more importantly, we didn’t lose.

  23. totally knew messi was going to miss.
    his casual style (the lazy run up mostly) never gives me confidence when he steps up to take a penalty. maybe its wrong to criticize messi, and while he is an undisputed killer threat from open play, its not the same for penalties.
    all credit to sevilla’s keeper. an inspired performance.
    i was really praying that xavi or villa take the penalty. was not to be. fab could’ve been an option too.

  24. I’m not liking the buzz after every match in which we lose points. In all my days of watching football, I’ve never seen a team generate so much hate the moment they make a step wrong. Now the focus is not on Varas’ amazing saves, its on the ref trying to help Barca win another game and fails at the Camp Nou. WTF?
    Maybe I should stop reading twitter and other football websites. This is getting ridiculous! Theres rumors that Cesc made racists remarks to Kanoute and thats why he lashed out, and that the ref added more time then needed, and that Iniesta dived for the penalty and that Barca always get these kind of calls? Really?!! So apparently we have a team of divers, cheating, ref-crowding, racist pansies who cant win with 11 vs 11. Oh yeah, here’s a new one: Messi cant be the greatest player because he missed a penalty when the team needed it the most AT HOME. He’s a choker. Get him out of football!


    I need a pill of some sort.

    1. It’d be better for you to ignore it. There are people out there, driven by their hate, who feel the need to sell Barca as some diving, racist, islamophobic, baby killing, puppy stealing atrocity to humanity. The more we do well, the more you’ll see these vile, baseless rumors created and spread; even by ‘respected’ journalists. Don’t seem to understand their sour grapes is not equal to the severity of the allegations. Sad that you can’t escape this even in sport, but what can you do?

      I just YouTube’d the incident, against my better judgment as I wanted to watch it live, and it’s a total non-issue. Heated moment, Sevilla feel hard done by, and Kanoute uses the oldest trick in the book to delay penalty and make sure Leo has to wait longer to take it. Cesc reproaches him, probably strongly, for it and Fredi uses this opportunity to waste even more time via the resulting fracas. I see this sh*t in the school grounds all the time. 🙄 And lo and behold, it worked.

      Kanoute is usually a chill guy, but even they can lose their heads. Conceding a last min penalty in a hard fought game can do that to a guy.

      In any case, I’m off to watch the game. Seems like an entertaining 0-0.

  25. Sevilla played well and their goaltender had a great match. These are the kind of games we need to win with EE playing well. I simply don’t understand not putting the best team on the field to start the match, against one of the better teams in the league. Don’t see how Busi and/or Cesc don’t start in this contest unless they are really banged up. Everyone will elevate their game to play against the best squad in the world, so I’ll wait a good explanation for Pep’s starting roster here.

    1. I know its frowned upon on these boards to criticize Pep, but I think he blew the line up and the subs. Why sub Busquets in the 80th minute? Why is he not starting?? By the end of the first half, you could tell that changes needed to be made. What is up with Pep’s fascination with Keita? Is he blackmailing Guardiola?? I don’t get it.
      Messi had the worst game I have ever seen him play. He played like he does for Argentina when he doesn’t have good chemistry with his team-mates. I don’t believe he ran with the ball towards goal as he usually does once during this game. Hence, I don’t think he was fouled all game. He looked like he was injured and wanted make a pass ASAP so he wouldn’t be tackled. Pep NEEDS to give him a day off. He looked like he took the day off, while still on the field.
      Disappointing, but give Sevilla credit – they played played their hearts out and the goalie was MOTM by a country mile. Although, wanna give Iniesta credit – he was super aggressive today and gave it his all.

    2. I’m secretly hope that Pep rest Messi on Tuesday and starts Cesc as false 9. We should be able to beat Granada without Messi right??

      But knowing the media they will make a big fuss about it and say Messi is benched because he missed a crucial PK etc etc.

    3. I’m with you Just. I like Keita, just don’t think he’s a starter vs. other options in a big match-up like this.

      Disagree on Messi, he was within a few inches on 3-4 attempts, however at the end of the game he forced 4-6 poor passes that really cost us considering how dominantly we were keeping possession.

      Caceres plays like the captain of Sevilla. A bit Sergio Ramos is his exuberancy and gets beat, but has a lot of heart.

  26. I may be out of line here but I think Pep overestimated Sevilla in terms of thinking they will attack us, knowing the kind of threatening players they got. His lineup IMO was wrong for this match. After seeing how defensively tight they were in the 1st 25mins, I was wondering why Keita was still on after the 2nd half. Adriano on the wing initially failed so glad he fixed that problem early but why not add another passing mid to aid Xavi and Thiago, ideally Busi.

    Then again I may be wrong,maybe he had Tuesday game on his mind also so this draw seems fair to him.

  27. What a frustrating match. Sevilla certainly defended well, and we also were not at our best, with some funky passing and questionable decisions (Pedro, Alves, and Messi in particular, or that’s how it looked while watching live). We couldn’t seem to move enough to break the bus in the Sevilla box and didn’t do much with the space we got out wide.

    That being send, the closing minutes were pretty weak on Sevilla’s part. You’re 4th in La Liga, and it’s not like you’re Sporting or Zaragoza having some kind of miracle start – you’re a club of respectable scale. Nevertheless, you’ve decided that the most you can aim for, the most positive result you can expect from the match, is one point. So you put ten men behind the ball and play for the draw – and execute well. But that just makes the way that the whole team went totally bananas after the penalty call all the more ridiculous. If you’re sitting that deep and offering that little attacking threat, even on the counter, you have to know that we’ll be up in your kitchen all night long, and if that’s the case, conceding a penalty is the risk you take. Kanoute’s clownery just tops it off – even before he tried to maul Cesc, that’s what they call bush league over in America.

  28. OK, where is Busquets?, and what is the rationale for the Keita obsession this season? Unless it is that he has been beyond loyal and humble and you are giving him minutes to prepare for his two months away with the National team so that he is match fit there, it is inexplicable. When is he leaving for that national tournament? Not because he isn’t good, but because Busquests is so much better and for some reason can’t seem to get a start in front of Seydou. Keita and Busi have made the switch from tactical sub and iconic modern defensive mid (respectively) to the opposite. Pep, get your head out your @$$, unless your punishing Busi for a private mono mono admission, your missing it. You have a European championship league (and spine of the World Cup Champions) team disaggregated and rusting illogically.

  29. same with you.. when I saw the line up, I was like
    “meh…where’s Busquets? I want some Xavi Busi Iniesta magic!”

    like I’ve said before, we have one of the best DM in the world, unless he’s injured and extremely tired, why benched him? por qué?

    1. ¡Yo te digo por qué! As Pep once said in a presser: “A Mascherano y Keita no me los quitéis porque son mis niñitas. Son dos soles. Mascherano es el capitán de Argentina. Son dos jugadores impagables. Da sentido a la profesión de entrenador el tener jugadores como estos”

      Basically he thinks Keita is a priceless player..I cannot elaborate on the “they’re my little girls” part though because I’m guessing its a Spainish or Catalan saying..its not something I’m familiar with.

      Pep seems to be for lack of a better word..obsessed with Keita. At least that’s how I perceive it to be because why else would he bench his best DM for Keita.

  30. Interesting fact. Every-time we have drawn this season, Keita has been in the lineup. Beginning with the 2-2 Madrid game, to the Milan draw,to Valencia, to Sociedad and finally to today.

    What is also interesting is how in the majority of those games Pep always subs Keita out around the 60-68 min mark, when we are looking for the win. My Question is why start him, when you know if things get bad he is the first one to be let go? Why not start our rightful DM and after sub Keita in for his minutes, were he can bring a calmness to the team.

    Yes I know Keita has also started in our trashing of some teams this season, specifically against Villareal were he lasted the full 90min and played well but other than that our best games have came when we have a full midfield circulating the ball quickly and precise, something that was lacking against Sevilla.

    People may think I’m picking on Keita, but IMO when he starts against the small teams such as BATE its all fine but against a team that parks the extreme bus as Sevilla did we needed full ball movement. Xavi was just alone 2day, it was only when Keita was off for Pedro and Iniesta back in Mid did we start creating some chances that a solid GK stopped.

    Anywho observation over. Remember what happened last time we drew a game? We went on to win 8-0 and then 5-0, so Granada look out on Tuesday!!!

    1. It’s not interesting… It is common sense. We attack. Barca is an attacking team. Keitieeeee! as marvelous and indispensable, humble, awesome and amazing as he is,… has a role. It is a defensive role. With the exception of there being no other options because of injuries, etc., (watch the last three seasons), Keitieee doesn’t get in unless surprise surprise, here comes Keita when we need to lock things down. Unless we’re trying to lock down a 0-0 from the start ( like we did today…) there is no reason to start him, really. OK, give me a break, you want to enumerate the deep midfield run headers, that granted he is good at occasionally, ( what? 3-4 times??, even if important?…) you also have explain why he is better in the deep midfield than Busquets, which he is not, and why the team plays better with Keita than Busquets.

  31. @Helge: You seem pretty bummed out lately. Hey go to the site in my link and leave a comment logged in from your FB account somewhere (or just normally with your e-mail if you don’t have Facebook) if you wanna vent, I’ll add you.

    Re: line-up. Probably not the best choice for this game against such a tough opponent, but still that’s more in the category of ‘rotation that didn’t work out’ more than ‘blinding obsession with Keita’. Esp with us having our centre-backs out for such spells. I don’t think it was a problem with just him either, his presence doesn’t affect the fact that we weren’t fluid cos we were missing an uncharacteristically large amount of passes, as in the further forward players.

  32. So what i have been saying about keita all this time is finally finding resonance. Keita basically doesnt deserve a place in FCB(starter or sub)- he is bad at DM (busi being better) or attacking mid (no assists and 2-3 goals on 25 starts). so there’s something chummy between pep and keita.

    I am sure kxevin would review and offer a defence on the lines of he offered himself (but to what outcome – to pass back or sidewards, kind of passes even i would complete with 100% accuracy) or saying he adds defensive steel (again this is a hogwash – he is terrible against really aggressive physical teams aka RM in supercopa first leg or Inter in 2010 season).

    All in all a decent game from barca. not like the hercules game last yr or 3-1 loss to Inter. Sevilla had 3 holding midfielders for god’s sake. Luck wasnt on our side. Hope we hit back against granada. I want messi to take few day off and come back refreshed against bilbao.

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