3️⃣ points as Barcelona put five past Real Betis in home rout


Alex Mott

Article image: 3️⃣ points as Barcelona put five past Real Betis in home rout

Antoine Griezmann scored his first two goals for Barcelona as they beat Real Betis 5-2 at Camp Nou.

The Frenchman netted either side of half time to open his account at the Blaugrana, but what else did we learn on an interesting night in Catalonia?

A special talent

This will be of no surprise to you, reader, but Nabil Fekir is bloody good at football. We also love that he’s shacked up at Real Betis.

It’s the kind of move that doesn’t really happen any more – a fairly middling European side (apologies to Betis fans) signing one of the best creative talents in Europe.

The France international was brilliant, in the first half especially, with his goal capping a wonderful performance.

Long may it continue.

Something missing

Barcelona were without Ousmane Dembélé and Luis Suárez on Sunday evening – oh, and Lionel Messi too.

But perhaps the most glaring admission was the absence of Ivan Rakitić.

The front three were missing because of injury but Rakitić wasn’t here purely because Ernesto Valverde didn’t think he was needed in the Barça midfield.

Never mind the result. He was wrong.

There’s a very strange strain of Barcelona fan online that has an odd vendetta against the Croatian, and honestly, we have no idea why.

His metronomic quality on the ball and ability to cut through a defence was sorely missing in the first half, and against more disciplined opponents will be needed.

Rumours abound that he could leave for Juventus or Paris Saint-Germain before the transfer window shuts. Sometimes, you don’t know what you’v got till it’s gone.

All falling into place

His full debut was nothing to shout about.

Barcelona looked blunt away at Athletic Bilbao last weekend with Antoine Griezmann struggling in his wide left role.

Here, playing as the central striker, he was what everyone at Camp Nou hoped he would be – full of energy, always looking for the ball and with a clear eye for goal.

His two finishes were expertly taken and showed a man in form and full of confidence, however there’s just one issue – what happens when Suárez returns?

We all know that Messi runs the show at Barcelona and he likes playing with Suarez in that central role.

It’s going to be an interesting few months for the Frenchman.