The Reigning Champions get speared in a 6-goal fest – Servable fails to deliver
Xaviball fails to deliver: Is there a new king in Catalonia?
FC Barcelona 2 Vs 4 Girona: The recent turn of events may have very well heralded the news of a new king’s crowning and it’s not FC Barcelona, but rather Girona. They have enjoyed a terrific run of form since the commencement of the 2023/24 season and currently sit at the top of Spain’s top flight. They sit above Barcelona’s bitter rivals Real Madrid with a gap of just two points.
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Was it utter domination or pure luck? Let’s find out!
FC Barcelona 2 Vs 4 Girona
This was Girona’s first win in La Liga against their local rivals, Barcelona. The scoreline was opened by the Ukrainian forward, Artem Dovbyk, who bagged his eighth goal of the season – followed by goals from Miguel Gutierrez, Valery Fernandez, and the veteran Christian Stuani. Robert Lewandowski made it level at 1-1 before all hope was lost. Ilkay Gundogan got Barcelona’s second but they were still stuck in a deficit at 2-3, only for things to get worse, leading to 2-4. The Uruguayan veteran, Stuani was the standout player of this match, getting a goal and an assist to his name.
Following the sidelining of Barcelona’s on-pitch skipper, Marc Andre Ter Stegen, the Blaugranas turned to their backup man to deliver, Iñaki Peña. Xavi stated very clearly in a press conference that no winter signings will be made for the position between the sticks as he trusts his keepers. However, the German’s absence was felt as the inexperienced Peña could only make 3 saves and showed visible signs of hesitation. But can he be blamed for the loss?
It was perhaps Barça’s frontline that deserves a little more scrutiny. Throughout the 90 minutes, they registered a whooping 31 shots, of which only two were converted into goals. For a club with the caliber of Barcelona, that inefficiency cannot be thrown under the bus. Furthermore, they created 5 big chances – all of which were missed, leading to question marks over the build-up of play. All in all, they managed to rack up an xG of 4.06 and with a result like this, it shows that maybe there are gaps that need to be filled with respect to finishing efficiency.
Were Girona Lucky?
In light of the analytics, it can be said that they were in fact, lucky in the game against Barcelona. However, it must also be mentioned that they were incredibly efficient – as has been the case all season long. In the game against Barcelona, their xG was pinned around 2.40 but they went on to run through that with four goals. 15 shots and 4 goals with just 47% of the possession points to a very efficient output, which is why they’ve been so dangerous this season – no big names but a very coherent squad.
So far, they have scored 38 goals, in contrast to Real Madrid’s 34, and conceded 20 with 2.4 goals scored every game. Their goal conversion sits at a rate of 18% compared to Los Blancos’ 13% and Barcelona’s 12%. So have they really been lucky? Not really, just super efficient. Their only loss so far came against fellow title contenders, Real Madrid.
If they carry on this form, the La Liga title race would be in for a very juicy plot, no?