Liga Liveblog: Villarreal – Barça

Thanks again to VicSoc for running this. Visca el Barça!

By Isaiah

Isaiah is a co-founder and lead writer for Barcelona Football Blog. He currently lives in the greater Philadelphia area.


  1. Failed name change.

    I keep looking at the comments and saying “dang, that Cloin character makes some amazing points, I almost always agree with him.” Too weird.

  2. F**k this!
    No Yaya, no Thiago… what the hell is so good about Keita and Busquets lately? Imo absolutely NOTHING.

  3. Valdes, Alves, Pique, Puyol, Maxwell, Busquets, Xavi, Keita, Pedro, Messi, Bojan

    Subs: Pinto, Marquez, Milito, Toure, Thiago, Jeffren, Ibrahimovic

  4. Henry not even in the squad. Goodbye Thierry looks like.
    Thiago will probably get some mintues if we are in control, maybe 2 goals up with 20mins to go.
    Messi plays an awful lot better with Bojan than he does with Ibra.

    1. Why false?
      I assume you are taking about the Messi comment. Bojan has better off-the-ball movement than Ibra does (although Ibra is a better player). Because of this, it often give Messi more room & more importantly it allows Messi to play closer to the goal.

  5. I can’t believe Busquets is included in the team after what he did mid-week

  6. The likes of Keita/Busi is playing while one of the best players on our team continues to warm the bench.
    I’m glad Ibra is on the bench though lets face it Messi plays better without him.

    Barça, Barça, Baaaarça!!!

    PS: Does a captial ç exist at all? I couldn’t make it ^^

  8. I anyone could shed some light on what exactly happened during the Busquets for Yaya sub, that would be awesome.

    Busquets played well, although his reputation earned him his first yellow. No clue what that second yellow, but no red, was about. Was he going to shake the refs hand sincerely or sarcastically?

    1. It was dumb on busquets part as he had a yellow and should just have gone off, I think part of the sub was because Pep didn’t want him to get a Red Card.

      The ref really didn’t need to show the card, llorente I think was holding up busquets so had he not done that busquets would have gotten to the ref and off the pitch a bit faster.

      Even DUMBER was busquets…got a second yellow and before his dumb ass gets off the pitch he STILL tries to shake the refs hand while puyol and pique realize what is happening and rush him off as inconspicuously as possible.

      It should have been a Red, I have no idea why it wasn’t given and Busquets should really be on probation for stupidity. After the shame he brought to the club in midweek.

    2. I think the ref may have taken the second yellow card back. It doesn’t show up on ESPN’s game report.

    3. Feck it i mixed it up.I think its ridiculous if they ask us to replay the score was 3-1 FFS

    4. indeed the card was for llorente, according to the official site, though everyone thought at first it was for busi. it was because llorente was hanging all over busi during the corner kick. thats my understanding after reading the game report on the official site:

      “De hecho, el susto más grande ha sido una amarilla que el árbitro ha enseñado cuando Busquets se disponía a ser sustituido y que, de ser para él, hubiera supuesto la segunda. Finalmente ha recaído en Llorente.”


      busi came off for yaya, which was the planned switched all along.

    5. I’ve heard that, if the ref really gave 2 yellows to Busquets but didn’t send him off, there has to be a re-match?!?

    6. I’m pretty sure the ref took the card back so I don’t think it’ll be an issue.

    7. The yellow was for Llorente, not Busquets. Official word, according to Sid Lowe’s tweets. No replay, no nothing.

  9. Good to see us looking like ourselves for the first time in far too long. The great weight of reaching Madrid is no more. So, that’s a bit of consolation.

  10. Okay, I’m at work and had to conduct an oral history interview, so didn’t get to be sneaky and watch it. Busquets did what? And there could possibly be a rematch, why?

    But mostly, YAY! We scored four goals!

    1. So Busquets played very well, just want to make sure that is out there.

      He got his first yellow from a handball, but honestly the ball played his hand, and he couldn’t have avoided it. Basically, a yellow for having a bad reputation.

      Then, as Yaya is coming in for him he is walking towards the ref (ostensibly to shake his hand – sarcastically or sincerely I have no idea) and the ref flashes him a yellow. Puyol rushes in to save the day and Busquets goes off, Yaya comes in, and that’s the end of it, no red, no player down, nothing.

    2. There was some sort of pushing and shoving (weakly) going on with him and Llorente. Or I think it was Llorente. I think that’s where the 2nd yellow came from. Which is absurd. People on a crowded subway get more physical than that trying to get off a train.

    3. Unfortunately Busquest incident will overshadow what a good game he had. Right from the start he was very mobile, recovered a lot of balls, his passing was excellent, but most of all there were no Busi antics. At one time he was repeatedly fowled but he stayed on his feet. Last week he would have fallen to the ground and start clutching his ankle. It seems that aftermath on Inter game had influenced him. Or Pep had a word with him. Ether way he showed a lot of progress on that front.

    4. Thanks for the info everybody! I appreciate it!

      Hope Busquets does learn to not be so theatrical.

    1. I see no mention of the yellow on soccernet and no mention of anything of note on the websites for FIFA and UEFA. I think it was rescinded.

  11. No worries about a rematch. The ref rescinded the second yellow when he realized that Busquets was getting subbed & had already been booked.
    Busquets is almost a liability at times. He really is immature.
    When Yaya came on in the second half it basically finished the match.

    Great game for Bojan again. We do play better with the kid in our XI.
    It was Valdes’ worst game of the season though. Against better opposition, he could have been caught out on a number of occassions.

    1. Well, its a good thing Valdes waited till now to have a wonky game, no? 😀

    2. Man, there was that one sequence in the second half where he was caught WAY out of the box, and they still had the ball and he just kept hopping sideways, slowly getting back. Drove me crazy.

  12. The yellow was for Llorente.


  13. If anyone manages to find a picture of Yaya and Pep right before Yaya goes in, where Pep has him arm around Yaya – I would really appreciate the link.

    And Bojan’s goal was awesome, can’t stop watching it. Poor Gonzalo is going to have nightmares of that move.

  14. Great game from the boy Bojan and it just proves that Zlatan just gets in the way, there’s no need for him. He’s proved he’s a great footballer at other clubs but just not for Barca. Great win, badly needed and upwards and onwards from here now.

  15. Putting 4 past Villareal is pretty impressive, only EE and Valencia have do so thus far this year, while we are the only one to do it in Estadio El Madrigal.

    Also please give me Luis Suarez as an early Christmas present this summer!!!!!

  16. Interesting photo, I wonder what Guardiola is saying. Probably checking with Busi to make sure the yellow card wasn’t for him, but I’d like to think he’s telling him not to argue with the ref while being substituted when already carrying a yellow.


    I thought the team played very well, but Xavi was man of the match by a long shot. A goal, two assists and a great pass to Alves for the fourth. So glad he recovered in time.

    1. I like that Ibra had a smile on his face when he was coming on for Bojan. Shows he was happy for Bojan and wasn’t all pissy he was coming in for 5 minutes.

    2. Yeah, I noticed that and was pleased to see it. Don’t think he’s a natural mixer but I’ve seen him smiling quite a lot over the season.

  17. Wow, what a goal by Bojan. I love this kid more and more everyday. I think we should keep him, start playing Ibra more on the left and hand the keys to Bojan next season. I’m amazed at how well he has blossomed and his movement, instincts plus hunger for goals is amazing. He may not be David Villa yet, but he seems close. Lets give him a shot.

    Xavi and Messi were pretty good. Its good to see the team didnt wilt under the disappointment of cl.

    Pep has hitched his reputation on the Ibra/Busquets wagon when he didnt have to, I just hope his second year as coach served as a lesson for him. The first was too magical for him to learn anything.

  18. what a relief… I was very nervous about this game.

    It seems that when we play teams that want to win a game and not just afraid to loose, we do alright… with one or two exceptions all season.

    That gives me a lot of hope for the next three games that we won’t face any more parked buses.

  19. What a game to watch.Finally some attacking display from both sides to enjoy…
    Bojan was also amazing..If Villa is to come it would heavily influence his development in the next 2 years….Would be sad to see him leave.

    BTW i find it hard to believe that mostly everyone agrees that without Ibra, Messi plays better. I for one is a huge Ibra fan and would give him all the time and faith in the world….Its only his 1st season with us..mostly every1 we sign improves there next season.

    1. Tajh, the problem is not that Ibra is a bad player, the problem is that he is just not a striker. Since we have him, we might as well move him to the left. He can take on defenders with open spaces, and can pass well. Just like when we tried Henry as a forward in his first year, it didn’t work very well.

      So the question is, do we sign Villa? I agree it will impede Bojan. This kid has talent. I think we should give him the keys, and he can be deputized by Ibra when he is going through slumps, while Pedro and Jeffren can cover the wings. I think we have cheaper solutions within our ranks.

  20. I hate to be negative, but we could’ve gotten a right hammering in this game. We started both halves so lazy, and the first 2/3 of the second half was all-around rubbish. I wasn’t in the liveblog, but I’m not seeing it in the comments so, here we are.

  21. i have a feeling pep said at half “manage the lead,” something we often show we can not do, so we can save energy for the remaining matches. but we couldnt do it cos villareal came out very strong, pressuring, and it wasnt so simple to just keep possession and waste time. we still have trouble finding that “other gear” that isnt all-out attack, but simply saving energy and maintaining a lead.

  22. quote from the dailymail piece that someone linked here awhile back, regarding the barca youth academy

    “‘When they play matches we impress on the boys three objectives,’ says Capellas. ‘Firstly, they must be the more sporting team, committing fewer fouls and being less aggressive. Then they must try to win by playing very well, more creatively than the opposition, with attacking football. And finally they need to win on the scoreboard. But we don’t want to win without the first two aims being fulfilled.'”


  23. bojan made a wonderful move for messi as well which messi squandered.
    messi not once but at least twice had a clear shot but decided to dribble on until the window is closed.

  24. An excerpt about Xavi from
    For his part, FC Barcelona coach Pep Guardiola is just full of praise for the player: “He has an injury that could see him miss the World Cup, and the commitment that he had shown is an example to be emulated.

    “That is why he is the best midfielder in the history of this club.”

    It also says that the injury will probably not disappear until the end of the season but Xavi wants to take the risk. Wow! Great devotion to the club… almost irresponsible though.

  25. Sid Lowe wrote in one of his articles that Xavi’s been playing with a minor injury all season.

  26. And Pep said Bojan’s going to have a long crrer on Barca.

    and 3 more games to go. yay!

  27. You know what really impressed me in yesterday’s match? The fans!
    It felt almost like a home match, they were constantly cheering for Barça, startet singing el Cant for about 20 times, that’s the perfect reaction from the fans. I believe that was a crucial factor of the match.

    Oh, and it was the first time since WC 2006 that I’ve worn my Argentina flag again (as a cloak over my Barça jersey and scarf), maybe it helped Messi 😀
    In about one month, I’ll be covered with it for each Argentina match and hope that Messi scores again and again and again!

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