Athletic Bilbao striker Asier Villalibre pulled out his trumpet after successful the Spanish Tremendous Cup on Sunday evening, so far as Barcelona supporters are involved he may as nicely have performed The Final Put up.
It was Villalibre who was punched by Lionel Messi in damage time with the Argentine despatched off for the primary time in his complete Barcelona profession. It was additionally Villalibre who scored the injury-time equaliser that took the sport into added time. He shaped a band final 12 months with three different members of the Athletic crew, therefore the trumpet.
Do Barcelona deserve The Final Put up? In all probability not. This cup last defeat does not change the truth that that they had received 4 of their final 5 league video games and moved as much as third place.
Lionel Messi walks off after his crimson card in Barcelona’s Spanish Tremendous Cup last defeat
Defeat by Athletic Bilbao is one other painful reminder of what the membership has turn out to be not too long ago
Sport’s entrance web page on Monday learn: ‘Barca let the Tremendous Cup escape’ after conceding late
However for his or her followers who’ve seen them win so many finals over the past 15 years it was one other painful reminder that they’re so distant from what they as soon as have been. With each Roma, Liverpool or Bayern Munich embarrassment, the reminiscences of the large wins fade.
This was not a Liverpool or Bayern type humiliation by way of the scoreline nevertheless it was nonetheless a last in opposition to a crew they should beat.
‘Barcelona ought to settle for as soon as and for all that proper now they’re a mid-table crew,’ tweeted one broadcast journalist and Barcelona fan. ‘Not accepting that’s self-destructive. The reconstruction must be full with none exceptions.’
In fact it is an exaggeration to name them mid-table. And with thrilling kids Pedri, Ronald Araujo, Sergino Dest and Frenkie de Jong in help of Messi – who, do not forget, continues to be LaLiga’s prime scorer – they hardly must eliminate everybody and begin from zero.
Athletic’s Unai Simon and Unai Nunez have fun in entrance of Antoine Griezmann, who scored two
Even Antoine Griezmann had delivered in a giant sport, maybe for the primary time since he signed… though, understandably, that obtained forgotten within the subsequent capitulation.
However you possibly can perceive the pessimism. Wanting on the brilliant aspect, which some Barca followers battle to do at one of the best of occasions, it appears as if Messi will solely be banned for 2 or three video games after referee Jesus Gil Manzano wrote in his match report that he had merely used ‘extreme power’ when he struck Villalibre.
The match official didn’t file it as an aggression which might have meant a minimal of 4 video games.
One of many matches he’ll miss might be on Thursday in opposition to Cornella within the Copa del Rey when he most likely wouldn’t have performed anyway. That last-32 sport might be difficult for Koeman’s crew.
Barcelona’s season is bettering however anyone will now must step up in Messi’s absence
Cornella noticed off Atletico Madrid within the final spherical. Their plastic pitch might be about as inviting because the January temperatures for the 9pm kick-off in three days’ time.
Messi will then miss the following LaLiga sport away to Elche and if Barcelona get previous Cornella, and if Messi does get three video games, then he’ll miss the following spherical of the cup too.
What the membership actually must carry the gloom is a brand new president and a few new signings however with coronavirus restrictions placing paid to the January 24 elections and that that means that there might be no new signings as a result of there might be no new president in place this month to signal them off, then inspiration should come from inside and it should come from somebody apart from Messi.