By Chima Azu
Barcelona made a huge statement with their 4-0 win at the Bernabeu over Real Madrid in last night’s El Clasico. It is glaring to the blind that Xavi has turned things around at the club. Below are few reasons to buttress that point.
1. FREE SCORING BARCELONA : Xavi’s men have now scored 32 goals in their last 12 games scoring 4 goals each in 6 different matches out of the 12 games. They only failed to score in their Europa League game against Galatasaray at Camp Nou. Aubameyang who Xavi described as “a gift from heaven” has made instant impact since he came to the club scoring 9 goals in 11 games in all competitions. Ferran Torres is also getting on the scoresheet scoring 5 of his own. If there’s one thing going well for Barca it’s goals scoring.
2. PLAYERS RAISING THEIR GAME : One player that is obviously rejuvenated is Ousmane Dembele; the french man has turned into a different player ever since Xavi took over. So far he has 11 goal involvement and has created 9 assist. The former Dortmund wide-man has completed 41 successive dribbles, and we all know how bad he made Nacho look last night. Other players like Alba, Pique, Busquet, Araujo, Dest have all raised their game this season and all thanks to Xavi unlike when Koeman was in charge.
3. BARCELONA ARE NOW COMPETING : So far Barça are now 12 games unbeaten and still counting. Winning games like the El Clasico after 5 consecutive losses and the convincing wins over Bilbao, Napoli, ATM and Galatasaray would have been only but a dream but the former legend has made the wins all a reality. Since Xavi’s arrival Barca has shown that they can now compete with the ‘big boys’. Who knows, maybe the case would have been different in Champions League if Xavi had started the season with the team.
4. SUBS MAKING IMPACT : Xavi’s substitutions have made positive impact and that shows that the young coach is learning really fast. His not shy in making changes at halftime and that has paid off on several occasions. Players like Luuk De Jong (5) and Deepay (10) have come in and scored crucial goals for the team. Adama Traore has also contributed with 4 assist to his name and his proving to be a quality addition to the team.
Barcelona might not be as great as they use to especially with Messi leaving, they now play more as a unit with high work rate from the players. It is obvious that Xavi has brought back the good times to Camp Nou and it’s only a matter of time before the trophies start rolling in.