State of the Liga: 2011 Winding Down

With just 9 matches to go in the season, it’s probably time I covered what’s going on around the rest of the league. Today I’ll start with the basement dweller of basement dwellers. Tomorrow I’ll be doing a more extensive post, but unfortunately life caught up to me and this is all that came out. Enjoy:

It’s sort of crazy to think that 2 of Hércules‘s 3 away goals came at the Camp Nou. In 14 other away matches they’ve garnered just that solitary strike, a Nelson Valdez strike that ended up earning them a point at Almeria back on October 24. Depor and Zaragoza each have 7 away goals, but in comparison with Hércules, that’s a veritable storm of scoring. Odd from a team with David Trezeguet, Abel Aguilar, Javi Portillo, Royston Drenthe, and Valdez, which you’d think would give you enough goals to at least act like you were getting out of the relegation zone. 4 consecutive losses (1-0, 1-2, 2-0, and 0-4) have dropped them to the bottom of the table, tied on 26 points with Almeria, who has them beat on head-to-head.

Where does Trezeguet hide himself on away days and where does his support go? He’s got 10 goals in the league, all at home in Alicante, but why can’t he get anything going on the road? Perhaps its that Royston Drenthe fell out with the coaching staff and management, but now the Dutchman is back…only to find Trezeguet injured. Or is it Javi Portillo’s fault for having only 1 goal this year in 20 appearances? He’s got 20 shots, which is a worse goals per shot than Cristiano Ronaldo. Shocking indeed. In assists, Tote ranks highest on the team…with 3. Hard to imagine them staying up at this rate, but at least they have 5 home matches and 4 on the road left.

How do they stay up, though? They face Racing, Sporting, and Depor at home and they’re the 14th, 15th, and 16th placed teams at the moment while they also face Mallorca and Espanyol at the Estadio Jose Rico Perez. They also travel to Sociedad (11th), Levante (12th), and Malaga (18th), so if they somehow eek out a few points there, they might survive. They end the season against Sporting, so if it comes down to that final moment, perhaps they’ll have the goods in their own stadium, but things aren’t looking like that will be the case.

Stats: 7-5-17 (25GF, 47GA); 1.43pts per home game, 0.40pts per away game. Leading scorer: David Trezeguet  (10).

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Isaiah is a co-founder and lead writer for Barcelona Football Blog. He currently lives in Germany with his wife and daughter.


  1. blitzen
    March 27, 2011

    Uh, yeah. I wasn’t initially ashamed that we lost to Hercules because they played well and seemed like an up-and-coming team at the time. But they have definitely not lived up to expectations. In fact, they have been dire for much of the season. NOW I am ashamed. Maybe they spent the last of their players’ wages buying the game against Barca? It’s the only explanation.

    Also, for the first time in my life I feel sorry for a RM player. Drenthe has been royally screwed by both RM and Hercules.

    • blitzen
      March 27, 2011

      And Betis OF COURSE. Frankly the best Spanish team Barca has played all year.

  2. blitzen
    March 27, 2011

    How did I not notice Mexico playing this weekend? Rafa had his 100th match! Chicharito was awesome, per usual.

    • Miguel
      March 27, 2011

      ’twas shadowed by the coentrao sanchez battle in the portugal chile match. i missed the first 20 minutes or so and the first two goals, but luckily not mexico’s third.

      i think ex-barca marquez assisted guardado in the goal that made it 2-0. what a coinky dink both xavi and he celebrated their 100th on the same weekend.

  3. barca96
    March 27, 2011

    Speaking of jerseys.
    I’ve always loved the body hugging Kappa’s especially the ones Italy wore at Euro2000 in my back yard.

    Somebody mentioned in another blog that while sMasch & Milito were warming up together, Messi wsa with someone else.
    Guess who??!!

      • barca96
        March 27, 2011

        Yup. Correct.

        Did Messi play the full 90mins?

        I read that most of the stars of the English team won’t play the 2nd friendly and thus will go back to their respective teams.
        Will our players get the same treatment?

        • Jnice
          March 27, 2011

          Yes, Messi played the full 90 as always.

          Sadly, it’s going to be England B vs Ghana. Germany have released Özil and Khedira as well.

          I heard some of our players may be rested for Spain, but I’m not too sure of that. Same with Messi.

          • barca96
            March 28, 2011

            Ronaldo isn’t even in the Portugal squad.
            And Messi is surely going to be playing another 90mins.
            To make matters worse, Ozil, RM’s key player is having a rest as well.

            With our defence problems and Messi being burned out, it really doesn’t look good.

            Is there really a need to play Messi the full 90mins in a friendly? I know there are agreements that says Messi has to play but does it say 90 mins?

          • Helge
            March 28, 2011

            I’ve read on an Argentinean blog that Messi would only play the second half. That would already be a huge success for us, wouldn’t it?

      • soccermomof4
        March 28, 2011

        I thought I saw him warming with Ever Benega??? Dunno, they were far away.

        • bridgette
          March 28, 2011

          Yeah, I was on the Argentina side and he was definitely warming up with Banega.

    • beeeef
      March 27, 2011

      rojadirecta has download links for the U17 Spain v Belgium from this weekend.

      Deulofeu had some pretty good moves on him, and put his team on his back to win the game after going down 1-0 in the first half.

      I hope we see a lot of this kid next year in the B team if he keeps on progressing like he has been.

      • Jnice
        March 27, 2011

        Thanks, I read about the game and was hoping to download it.

        And yeah, hope he can make an impact with Barça B next season and I hope Pep lets him train/play with the first team in pre-season.

        • beeeef
          March 27, 2011

          The trend in the last several years regarding youth players is that the most hyped prospects generally haven’t fulfilled expectations for one reason or another (Bojan/Dos Santos/Assulin), while guys with less profile (Pedro, Busquets) have become integral squad members.

          Hopefully that isn’t the case with Deulofeu and others. We’ll see.

          • Jnice
            March 28, 2011

            Just finished watching the whole match…. he killed it.

            But yeah, you’re right, I seriously hope he pans out. Needs to work on his attitude, though. Gets way too frustrated with his teammates kind of like Cristiano.

          • barca96
            March 28, 2011

            Damn JNice. Don’t you need to sleep?
            You spend so much time watching football and online.
            Are you making money by being online?
            You play stocks? E-Commerce?

    • Miguel
      March 28, 2011

      like i said, i can’t wait to see the kid on a consistent basis. he obviously has talent. i’m not seeing benja, tello, or saúl standing in his way.

  4. Sheena
    March 28, 2011

    Via Barcastuff:
    Ibrahimovic (Milan): “Since we’re out of the CL, I’d like the best team to win. And I think that’s Barcelona now.”

    Ibra said something that didn’t make him sound like a complete and utter ass hat? Whoah. Excuse me, I think I need to lie down for a bit.

  5. blitzen
    March 28, 2011

    Tw Jay DeMerit (USA): “Chasing Messi around feels like when you’re 12 yrs old playing football with your 16 yr old brother and his buddies.”


  6. hammeronmessi
    March 28, 2011

    bored to death.

    Please please post past articles bout barca or messi,xavi,iniesta.anybody please.

    No sid lowe by the way.

    • March 28, 2011

      wow, this kid is so freaking good. he reminds me of messi in the way he controls his dribbling and the way he cuts. I really hope he pans out because he could be deadly.

  7. hammeronmessi
    March 28, 2011

    are you a vampire?
    How the hell are you always here?

    I mean a banevolent vampire

  8. Josep
    March 28, 2011

    Was the Spain U-16 game today? I can’t find links to an upload yet, I assumed it was Friday.

    To all you suckers who were at Int’l matches this weekend I was at the Chicago Fire game where we won 3-2! Take that! I got to witness possibly MLS goal of the season (He did the same thing last season, home opener, where I was also in attendance)

    Also, I was on TV during our second goal and my friend took a picture. I’ll upload it later.

    Finally, does anyone know if we have a pre-contract on Gerard yet? Everyone seems to be keen on the boy wonder. I’m really excited about him, I’ve been following him for the last 2-3 years and his progress has been immense.

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