FC Barcelona has secured a classy victory over Premier League side Tottenham Hotspurs, edging past them by a comfortable margin of 4-2, thanks to youngster Lamine Yamal’s heroics at the climax, when he created three goals in last ten minutes, thus leading the La Liga champions to a sweet Joan Gamper victory, kickstarting their new season at their new home Estadi Olimpic Lluis Companys.
Barcelona kickstart their new season with a trophy
Xavi and his brigade will be happier with their side’s performance in the pre-season cup “Trofeo Joan Gamper”, which has been the Catalan giants’ season opener over the years. Every year, they are drawn with some top heavyweights of World football, thus giving Xavi some insights into his latest recruits. This year, it was Tottenham’s turn, who, under the vigil of former Celtic coach Ange Postecoglou, will aim to kickstart their new campaign next week. Thus, Cules all over the world would be glued to check their team’s performance ahead of the new season.
Every year, it was Barcelona who would reign supreme in the final as they have defeated almost every opponent they have faced, by comparatively huge margins. Last night was not an exception either as Barca and Spurs fans were treated to an absolute goal fest, at Barcelona’s new home Estadi Olimpic Lluis Companys. Barca stumbled a little, trailing to Spurs by 1-2 in the 80th minute, before Barca’s youngsters Fati, Yamal and Fermin decided to go for the kill in the last ten minutes, defeating them 4-2.
Both the teams had fielded their strong and potent eleven, to check out some of their latest signings with Xavi fielding an initial eleven in a little tweaking formation of 4-1-4-1. With Lewandowski the sole striker on the block, he was slated to be assisted by four of Barca’s potent midfielders in the form of Gavi, Pedri, De Jong and Raphinha. In absence of their seasoned Busquets who has parted ways with the club to pursue his American dream, it was Barcelona’s latest force in the midfield Oriol Romeu who played his role of holding the midfield sensibly. In the defensive set-up, it was the traditional four-throng, comprising Balde, who came to the fore last season with his penetrative run-ins in the box, Eric Garcia, Kounde and the ‘block’, Araujo. Unsurprisingly, Barca’s winger who is in a conundrum of signing with PSG, Dembele was left out from the squad.
For Spurs, it was new star Vicario who was fielded under the goal, as Ange went with a 4-2-3-1 formation, with Richarlison being the sole striker, assisted by Lo Celso, Perisic and Solomon on the attacking midfield. Similarly for them, it was Kane who was given the cold shoulder, as he is in dilemma whether to join German champions Bayern or stay for one more season at the North London club.
Lewandowski gives the lead
It was Polish striker and last season’s Pichichi winner Robert Lewandowski, who gave the Catalans lead within the first 3 minutes, after being assisted by his favorite winger Raphinha, as the Brazilian striker came to the fray with his swerving assist.
But it took 20 minutes for Spurs to get back on level terms with Barca, as Oliver Skipp slotted past his shot against Ter Stegen, as the Zamora Trophy holder from last season was left stranded with his shot.
Barca’s woes seemed to continue when Skipp netted his second goal of the day, on the 36th minute, giving a surprising lead for the Spurs, as entire Estadi Olimpic came to a standstill with his goal. As a result, the match went to half-time with Barca trailing at 1-2.
Introduction of the latest star signing
As the second half whistle blew, it was Barca who was gaining the upper hand in the game, winning duels and playing in typical Barca-esque style, with short passes and swift movements. On the 62nd minute, it was time for Xavi to hand his latest star Ilkay Gundogan a debut at home, as he replaced Pedri, thus garnering a humongous round of applause. Along with “Gundo”, several others were substituted too as Inaki Pena, Ansu Fati, Ez Abde and Marcos Alonso got their prospective opportunities.
Lamine Yamal- the future superstar
Both the teams were going neck-to-neck with a stiff competition, thus treating fans with a nailbiter. But, it was on the 80th minute, when Xavi decided to launch his potential match winner, the La Masia talent, Lamine Yamal in to the game. He replaced Eric Garcia, thus Barca trying to reinforce some attacking mentality in the game.
Just after he was introduced in the game, he went on to assist Ferran Torres in an outrageous fashion, thus the former Manchester City striker equalizing for the Blaugranas. Lamine set a milestone last season when he became the youngest ever to play for Barca in a La Liga game, at 15 years age. In his debut match, he almost scored a goal, only to be thwarted by opponent goalie, but last night, it was him again, who proved Xavi that should he be counted in every game next season. His swift pace, coupled with classy assists prove that the legendary charisma of La Masia runs in his blood.
As soon as Ferran equalized, Barcelona got their mojo back in the game, as another La Masia gem, Barca’s no.10, Ansu Fati secured the lead for the Catalan giants after a mind boggling assist from Ferran, and three minutes later, Moroccan star and Ez Abde found the back of the net, from an assist from Fermin Lopez, Barcelona’s new found La Masia gem, who debuted in the senior team by scoring against Real, thus leading Xavi’s men to lifting the Joan Gamper Trophy.
After Barca’s onslaught on the last 10 minutes involving their La Masia gems, it would be safe to say that Barcelona’s future is in safe hands, as all their stars have shown what they are capable of in the senior game.
Barcelona will be starting their title defense next week against Getafe, when they travel to Coliseum Alfonso Perez to begin their new season with new hopes and wishes.