Xavi cannot find out the solution in front of the firm defense of Athletic players.

Obviously, Messi was on the field since the first minute, but without his usual magic; and so was his new partner Neymar, isolated from his teammates and making slippery show for the most of the time.The team had once again been faced with the dilemma between possessions or advantages. With the clear three-layered defense line deep in back, the Athletic players successfully kept Barca’s attack away from their goal. Besides, their high quality counterattacks imperiled the home team intermittently.

It is no doubt that the Catalans can effortlessly push their offense to the front of their opponent’s box. But then the ball moves around instead of going into the box. It almost becomes a formula when Barca has used out his regular weapons.  Similar scenarios repeat over and over, and finally turn the Catalans’ effort into futility. At this moment, Barca may seek for some daredevil stunts to try his luck, like counterattacks, long shots, direct passes down both flanks and most of all, some personal dribbling attacks at the edge of the box.

With the away goal advantage,  Barcs claims the Spanish Supercup 2013 and Tata harvests his first championship. But it is by no means a time for celebration. We expect to see more exotic flavor of the playing style from the new coach, especially when his team is playing against firm defenders.

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