Barcelona v River Plate: Talking Points

December 20, 2015 7:47 pm

Lionel Messi broke the deadlock and Luis Suarez scored twice in the second half to give Barcelona a typically emphatic 3-0 win over River Plate in the Club World Cup final on Sunday. EssentiallySports brings you the main talking points of the match.

Intense Pressing from the South American club:

River Plate displayed the typical South American footballing style as they made fierce challenges on the Blaugranas and pressed intensely for the initial 45 minutes. They chased the ball all over the field, making things difficult for the European Champions in the opening minutes. It was the Argentinean’s club hard work on the field that delayed the opening goal of the game for the Catalans up until the 36th minute.

Football Soccer – River Plate v FC Barcelona – FIFA Club World Cup Final – International Stadium Yokohama, Yokohama – 20/12/15
FC Barcelona’s Neymar in action with River Plate’s Jonatan Maidana
Reuters / Toru Hanai

Messi the greatest ever still an argument?

Leo Messi became the first player ever to score in all six club competitions in a single year, twice (2011, 2015). He also became the only player in the sports history to score in all the 7 official possible competitions in a year (including the Copa America). Now on his way to his record fifth Ballon D’or and with several other piles of individual and collective records to his name, the question of him being the greatest ever seem to be becoming more and more on the unarguable side with every passing match now.

This quote from former Barca and the current Bayern coach Pep Guardiola describes everything about Messi : “Don’t write about him, don’t try to describe him, just watch him.”

Barcelona’s soccer player Lionel Messi smiles during a training session ahead of their Club World Cup semi-final soccer match against Guangzhou Evergrande in Yokohama, south of Tokyo, Japan, December 15, 2015. REUTERS/Toru Hanai

MSN at their dazzling best –

Football fans haven’t got to see the magical combo of Messi, Suarez and Neymar enough times this season due to the injuries of Messi and Neymar. But the holy triumvirate of Barca put into display once again the mesmerizing football that won them the treble last season. Leo Messi got his name in to the score sheet and later his dribble in the second half followed by a beautiful cross from Neymar gave Suarez his second for the night. The Samba boy also showed why he is the next in line to win the Ballon D’or as his mazy dribbles and nutmegs bamboozled the opposition causing them to resort to nasty fouls on the Brazilian.

Football Soccer – Bayer Leverkusen training – BayArena, Leverkusen, Germany – 08/12/15 FC Barcelona’s Lionel Messi, Luis Suarez and Neymar (R-L) during training before UEFA Champions League soccer match against Bayer Leverkusen REUTERS/Ina Fassbender

Abysmal refereeing-

The referee made some horrendous decisions in this match as the Club River Plate players resorted to UFC tactics as the match progressed. The game deserved a red to at least one of the men from the Argentinean club and it was an utter surprise to see the referee see off some of the horrible tackles that were made on the likes of Suarez, Busquets and Neymar in particular.

Anyhow, Barca came off victorious as the supreme quality of the men in red and blue was enough to see off any upset and come out with victorious colors.

Football Soccer – River Plate v FC Barcelona – FIFA Club World Cup Final – International Stadium Yokohama, Yokohama – 20/12/15
FC Barcelona’s Neymar is shown the yellow card by referee Alireza Faghani
Reuters / Toru Hanai

Can anybody actually stop Luis Enrique’s men?

Rewind 11 months and the Catalans were looking at a potential trouble in the club after a season which saw them go trophy less. Six months later, Blaugranas completed a memorable turn around by finishing the season by winning every trophy they played for. The club won their second treble – a feat never achieved by any other team in the sport’s history. Again fast forward six months later and the world witnessed the treble winners cap off their year with two another trophies making it 5 out of a possible 6. Luis Enrique has made this group of players almost unstoppable with the trio of Messi, Neymar and Suarez on its way to become the most devastating front line in the sport’s history. It is almost impossible for any defense to be able to stop the three of them together and with this level of performance, Barcelona could very well be on their way to break further records in the new year one of which would be the team becoming the first club in the history of the sports to win the Champions League twice in a row.

Football Soccer – River Plate v FC Barcelona – FIFA Club World Cup Final – International Stadium Yokohama, Yokohama – 20/12/15
FC Barcelona’s Andres Iniesta, Sergi Roberto and Sergio Busquets celebrate winning the FIFA Club World Cup Final
Reuters / Thomas Peter




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