Sunday, November 11, 2007

It's like deja vu all over again...

"Those responsible are the players as we are the ones who have to fight. I am worried. After every game we say the same things but another two weeks go by and the same thing happens again."

"We try to play our football but our rivals put more into it than us and if we don't put more in we don't win. They played more as a team. You have to look at the way you lost and this is what worries me. We are not playing as a team and everyone can see that."

"We need to speak among ourselves but it is clear that we cannot continue like this. We are the first ones who want to forget about last season but what we are doing reminds us of last year."

Carles Puyol after Saturday night's defeat away to Getafe. He is of course right.

Having defeated Rangers 2-0 during the week without really having to try (both iron man Puyol and Iniesta were fantastic against Gers, who were incredibly poor) it was back to earth with a bang in Madrid. It was the same old story. The blaugrana dominated possession but could do nothing with it. Getafe, a limited but disciplined team, had a few chances and put them away. Barcelona on the other hand, failing to get the first gol, became more and more frustrated and until the wheels completely came off with Zambrotta's sending off on eighty-five minutes.

One really has to wonder when Barcelona are going to get over this hump. After the meltdown that was last season it was all going to be different. The defense was re-enforced with Milito and Abidal, and Toure added some more steel to the midfield. They were no longer going to be the soft pushovers they were last time out when they came up against strong, physical sides. How little has changed. Now third behind Real and Villarreal, the blaugrana look to have learned nothing from the fiasco that was the second half of the 06/07 season.

Watching Puyol on Wednesday night was inspiring stuff, he was everywhere. His teammates would do well to watch and listen to Carles. Otherwise there'll be a whole lot more wailing and gnashing of teeth come May.


Mal said...

Sid Lowe seemed to say that Rijkaard is now under pressure. What's going to happen there?

Thomas Kelly said...

I don't know. Barça look awesome at home, unbeatable, yet the moment they leave the Camp Nou they completely lose their way. Part of this is down the players, part of it down to Rijkaard.

Considering the state the blaugrana were in the first Christmas that Frank was in charge (that 5-1 defeat away to Malaga being a particularly low point) I'd expect them to stick by him, at least until the second round of games in the Champions League next year.

They are only four points behind and Madrid certainly don't look like they're going to run away with it. There's plenty of time yet for Barça to right this.