Top Stories

Barcelona’s stroll past Atlante

Lionel Messi 1 (AP)

The FIFA Club World Cup isn't getting the attention it has gotten in year's past, but FC Barcelona is doing its part to change that.

The European champions opened its Club World Cup on Wednesday with a 3-1 win vs. Atlante. The Mexican club opened the scoring, but were quickly dismantled by Lionel Messi and Co.

Here are the highlights (Barcelona's second goal is a sight to see):

Comments

  1. Ives,

    Did Marquez extended his contract with Barcelona? I hope not. Even though he is probably their best defender playing from the back, he has def lost a step and has been prone to costly errors as of late.

    Lost in the incredible collective effort was Busquets’ touch in the first goal. And what else is there to say about Iniesta? His ball control and touch are probably the best right now. There have been times when a ball gets to him from weird angles and fast and he just calmly controls it like he has gloved hands instead of feet.

    I think the emergence of Pedro makes it easier for Henry to move on.

    Cheers

    Reply
  2. That second goal was amazing. That is soccer. That is the game right there. Kind of reminds me of the beautiful buildup to that Cambiasso goal in the last World Cup.

    Reply
  3. I remember having a discussion at work with some visitors from Barcelona and asked them about Valdez. They all thought it was dumb to let Reina go but keep Valdez. They chocked that up to the general incompetent regime at the time — who let other stars get away like Pique and Cesc and tried to get a new Zuzibarreta with “star” goalies like Bonano and Rustu rather than develop internal prospects like Reina and Valdez. When their stars flamed out, they were left with no choice but Valdez and since they were successful, there was no need to try to “push their luck again.” Furthermore, perhaps the Laporta management/ Rijkaard and Guardiola were more willing than their predecessors to use Barca youth products than buy world stars.

    Reply
  4. please don’t start that dispute again..
    but a better topic of discussion would be would you rather have Howard, Reina or Valdez? could barca (best team on earth) upgrade at Keeper? not a huge fan of valdez but it won’t happen. not until a real number one comes out of catalan somewhere. plus valdez is on contract until 2014.

    Reply
  5. Atlante had clear chances to make it 2-0 and then 2-2, but they didn’t!

    I think that the Atlante goal plus the second and third Barca ones where skillful and classy.

    Reply
  6. I believe if he hadn’t come up through Barca’s youth system he wouldn’t be there now. Barca’s weak point is their (justified) pride in the (many) players from their own system. It’s a nice weak point for a super-team.

    Reply
  7. second and third goals show that Atlante was out of position and overwhelmed-haha yea, that usually happens to most teams that play barca.

    Reply
  8. Steve,

    According to footbal-lineups.com, Pedro is 1.69 meters, or about 5″-6″. Messi is listed at the same height. They are both tied for the shortest man on the roster. I agree with you, Pedro sure looks short compared to the other players who gathered after his goal.

    Reply
  9. I only saw the second half. Barca looked awesome as usual, but, at the same time, Atlante’s defense looked terrible, The replays of Barca’s second and third goals show that Atlante was out of position and overwhelmed.

    Reply
  10. Barca should probably have scored more goals but the score could have easily been 3-3. Props to Rojas from Atlante for keeping the game exciting, he was more then a handful for Barcelona’s defense, lucky for Barcelona that he didn’t have the finishing touch on the rest of his attempts as he did with his first incredible goal. Great game though, all the way through to the final whistle!

    Reply
  11. This ‘world class’ label is interesting and especially so when applied to keepers. How many ‘world class’ keepers are there on the top 8 teams?

    Chelsea has a keeper afraid to challenge in the area. Arsenal’s Almunia is indifferent. Dida is a disaster. Reina is solid but doesn’t even start for his country.

    So world class keepers on the top teams? Buffon, Casillas, Van de Sar, Chavez. 50/50 shot, I guess.

    Reply
  12. I was very impressed with Atlante through the Concacaf Champions League. Going into this game I actually thought they had an outside chance of winning. I don’t know what I was thinking. I must have some how had a memory lapse as to just how good Barcelona is. It was complete domination for 88 of 90 minutes.

    But…don’t count out Estudiantes in the Final. Internacional was a perfect example of that a few years ago.

    Reply
  13. Dave, I can see your point about the other teams wanting to win. I want to have carnal relations with Nicole Kidman. Similar prospects for success.

    When Barca is in the semi-finals playing a team that last year took a draw vs. Houston Dynamo and NOW sits between 3rd & 5th in the Mexican league, I call that tourney imbalanced and BS. But that’s just my negative, Barca hating self. 🙂

    Be well,

    Reply
  14. How tall is Pedro?! Either everyone on Barca is 6’3″+ or he’s only about 5’1″.

    And yes, that 2nd goal.. at least the buildup towards the goal was awesome.

    Reply
  15. I agree about Valdes, though these last 2 seasons-barring his shocking gaffe in the Kiev game last week-and a couple of weak performances in last season’s champs league, have been BY FAR his best. I was frankly surprised that he survived the decline of Riijkard. In a team of world superstars-he is far below the standard of the rest of his players-though the stop he made in yesterday’s match was world-class.

    W/ goalkeepers though I guess there’s just sort of a limited supply and the big clubs all have their man-who could Barca get that’s better?

    Reply
  16. Well Mig, while that may be the result, I’d love for you to tell that to any of the other sides in the competition. They want to win just as bad as Barca-Atlante scored after 4 minutes and Barca fans around the world collectively gulped, so while the effect may be a publicity tour for the European team-it’s a decent competition, I definetly enjoyed watching the match yesterday.

    Reply
  17. That is the potential and yes, they have to prove it. They have some issues at the back-I wish they could pry Vidic from United, but the front 6 is just ridonculous-magic footballers-every one. So yeah they have the potential to be the greatest team ever-after being arguably the greatest team ever last year, ha. Either way, they are a joy to watch and their potential is somewhere in the strastophere I suppose-up on football’s mt olympus.

    Reply
  18. Potential? They’re on top of the world. We could be watching one of the best teams of all time. You’re right though, they have the potential to prove it.

    Reply
  19. Well, we have one team in this useless tournament with 10x the roster money of any other team, and we’re impressed because they dominate?

    Whatever, this is a marketing device, not a tournament. Each year, the absurdly rich Euro team does an exhibition tour. Sometimes they even lose in the final, usually on penalty kicks.

    I absolutely detest calling this thing a tournament instead of an exhibition.

    Reply
  20. I love Barca. But every time I see Valdes on goal, my stomach kind of turns. I mean the guy has improved but not there yet to call him world class.

    Am I the only one who feels that way?

    Reply
  21. The last 10 minutes were a joy to watch as Ibra especially turned on the tricks. To be able to do the things w/ the ball that he can at 6 5 is just not even fair. I love Barca period, but this squad may be even better than last year-which makes me wonder how that can even be possible. If they’re all healthy for the spring, the potential is just unbelievable-Messi, Ibra, and take your pick-Henry, Pedro, Iniesta as the third attacker, and the class in the midfield is just unreal (Xavi AND Iniesta in the top 5 for WORLD player of the year-midfielders!). I mean Henry can’t even get into this team-good lord. I just hope they can stay healthy as the potential of this side is just astronomical.

    Reply
  22. Really, you’d have a hard time throwing a (NFL) football around with the accuracy and creativity that Barca manage with their feet. Greatest show on Earth.

    Reply

Leave a Comment