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Feb 23, 2020

Opening up a two point lead just before the Clasico at Bernabeu is the answer to every Barcelona fans prayers. Lionel Messi stole the show as usual with a four goal five-star performance.

FC Barcelona - 5 | Eibar - 0

The biggest question in the build-up of this match was whether the 'Ball will Go In'. Everyone expected goals from Eibar, but will it come from Messi that was the big question. And he answered in quite some fashion scoring four, his fourth poker in the League, second versus Eibar. This victory along with Real Madrid's loss at Levante later opened up a two-point lead for Barcelona at the summit.

Eibar has been one of his favorite opposition scoring 20 times in eleven meetings. So this clash came at the right time when Messi was struggling to score goals but was assisting left, right and center. Currently, Messi leads the Pichichi charts having scored 18 goals and the assist chart providing 12 assists. The second-placed in both charts is five goals away from him.

Once agains it was a 4-3-3 formation to Start

The formation was a source of confusion at the start. Most of the broadcaster showed a formation of 4-4-2 with a diamond in midfield. That formation had Semedo, Pique, Lenglet, and Junior in defense. Busquets, Rakitic, Arthur and Vidal occupying the midfield. Vidal was at the tip of the diamond. Messi and Griezmann formed the front trio.

The moment the games started we realized that the formation was a traditional 4-3-3 with Vidal on the left. I guess every situation is a chance for Setién to experiment. I would not say that was a great success, as Vidal proves clearly to be a better option at the center.

The game started evenly to everyone surprise. Barcelona had early possession as expected, but Eibar was making merry on the wings and creating chances, at least half chances. They had almost four shots at Barcelona's goal in the opening exchanges.

Butonce Barcelona took charge, they were more or less on the back foot. The definite strike from Barcelona came with Messi's opener which was a work of art. In the 14th minute, Messi nutmegged the defender to get past him, then slotted the goal past an onrushing keeper. It may sound simple, that's because no one knows how to describe what we saw there. The question is still open whether the nutmeg on the defender or the finish which one was greater work of art. The decision to hit the ball much earlier only could be taken by him.

From then on Eibar was waging a losing battle. The magnitude of the task became much bigger in the 37th minute when Messi scored his second. Messi received the ball from Vidal and raced past the defense to finish from an extremely tight angle. The third came soo within three minutes. Griezmann would be thanking his stars after Messi slotted the goal, Messi gave the goal to him in a platter, but he failed miserably.

Barcelona Took the Foot Off the Pedal in Second Half

As expected, Barcelona took the foot off the pedal in the second half. With two high powered matches coming in the week, it was natural that this happened. Even though Setién could be a bit worried about this attitude of some of the players. But still, Messi was in quite the mood and was creating chances. On the other end, Ter Stegan was called upon to make more than usual routine saves.

The game changed with the introduction of Braithwaite in the latter quarter of the match. He was clearly on a mission to prove his worth to the Camp Nou faithful. To his credit, he kept it simple and played to his strength. In the 87th minute, he turned provider of Messi, slotting a cross which found Messi in middle. In the 89th minute, his shot was blocked narrowly by the keeper, but Arthur was at hand to complete the manita.

Looking on to the Napoli and Real Madrid fixture, Barcelona could not have asked for a better performance from this side. This performance gives them confidence and now they should try to replicate the same away from home.

All About FC Barcelona is a Blog dedicated to the Most prestigous Club in the world, FC Barcelona by an ardent fan. Here I discuss about the Latest happening surrounding our Club and present my Views about the same.

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