Unrecognizable, starless, heavily in debt … Barça, a prestigious institution that dominated Europe in the early 2010s, is experiencing a journey through the desert symbolized by the 3-0 Bayern Munich inflicted on it on Tuesday, a year after the terrible 8-2 .
The Barça fans, who now do not have Leo Messi, have not won a Champions League game since December 2, 2020 against the modest Ferencvaros (3-0).
Before a fort, the Camp Nou is now a field where the giants of Europe are no longer afraid and in which Barça have lost their last three Champions League games, conceding ten goals and scoring only one.
And the tough loss to Bayern on Tuesday, a year after Lisbon’s historic 8-2 debacle in the 2019-2020 quarter-finals, has only confirmed familiar impressions.
Barça had not started a campaign in Europe with a defeat at home since 1997 (3-2 against Newcastle), that is, for 24 years. It is also the first time in its history in the Champions League that Barça has finished a game without shooting a single time on goal.
– «Poor Barça» –
The Madrid and Catalan press agree to verify the Barça setback this Wednesday. “Poor Barça”, he titled Marca, while for Barcelona Sport it is “The sad reality” and the Catalan sports newspaper L ‘Esportiu headlines “Very, very far.”
An impotence shared by the Blaugrana icon Gerard Piqué after the game: «It is what it is, I am convinced that it is a difficult year. We must be frank: we are not among the favorites.
According to the Catalan media, President Joan Laporta and his closest circle held an emergency meeting at the Camp Nou offices in the evening, after the meeting, without announcing any immediate decision.
«The game confirmed the depressing impression that Barça has trapped these days (…) A long and useless game for Barça, a kind of death row at the end of which there was no other hope than defeat. Nobody could hope otherwise, “wrote Alfredo Relaño, honorary president of the newspaper As in his column this Wednesday.
– Hope –
Should Barça be considered dead or is there hope? Admittedly, the Barça club had bad luck before this continental debut.
Barça lost two superstars in the past market with the departure of Messi to Paris SG and the transfer of Antoine Griezmann to Atlético de Madrid. The many injured, especially in attack (Ansu Fati, Ousmane Dembélé, Sergio Agüero, Martin Braithwaite …), have not been able to help either.
His figures, in the image of a Jordi Alba who played ill and was injured, an exhausted Sergio Busquets or a Sergi Roberto whistled on his way out, can no longer support the team alone.
And young people like Eric García, who failed in the goal of Thomas Müller, Riqui Puig, Pedri, Óscar Mingueza, Álex Baldé, Yusuf Demir, Sergiño Dest or Ronald Araujo, still have to accumulate experience before trying to compete at the highest level.
«I keep that 18-year-olds have entered. It is what it is. I am convinced that it is a complicated year but that we will end up competing, “said Piqué on Tuesday.
Something that Barça will have to do quickly in Group E, where they have run out of error against Benfica and Dynamo Kiev. AFP (HN)