Barcelona and João Félix take the Metropolitano with a resounding victory over Atlético | Soccer | Sports

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João Félix and Barcelona attacked the Metropolitano. The Portuguese scored a goal against his former fans, who rejected him, and Xavi’s team, from less to more, grew with an exercise, first of practicality and then of effectiveness. Barça started timidly and ended up handing their first league defeat at home to their rival with authority, with three goals that silenced the red-and-white coliseum. The victory allows him to stay alive in the fight for the title, while the defeat takes Atlético out of the Champions League positions. Unlike their rival, Simeone’s men did not find the goal when they were superior.

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Oblak, Reinildo Mandava, Witsel, Savic, Samuel Lino (Griezmann, min. 45), Pablo Barrios Rivas, De Paul (Saúl, min. 65), Nahuel Molina, Rodrigo Riquelme (Correa, min. 58), Morata (Depay, min. 45) and Marcos Llorente (Koke, min. 58)

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Barcelona

Ter Stegen, Hector Fort (Marc Casado, min. 82), Pau Cubarsí, Koundé, Ronald Araújo, Fermín López, Gündogan, Sergi Roberto (Oriol Romeu, min. 77), Lewandowski, Raphinha (Lamine Yamal, min. 60) and João Félix (Vitor Roque, min. 76)

Goals 0-1 min. 38: João Félix. 0-2 min. 46: Lewandowski. 0-3 min. 64: Fermin Lopez.

Referee José María Sánchez Martínez

Yellow cards Koundé (min. 32), De Paul (min. 45), Savic (min. 60) and Pablo Barrios Rivas (min. 88)

red cards Nahuel Molina (min. 92)

The two teams appeared riding the wave of their qualification for the quarterfinals of the Champions League. And in both lineups, Simeone and Xavi played to save something for the second half. Plus the Atlético coach, who left two untouchables like Koke and Griezmann and Memphis, decisive in Inter’s epic night. Xavi booked Lamine Yamal, the most unbalanced footballer of him. In the warm-up, Christensen, the midfielder who has been invented to put cement in the middle, fell. The Dane’s loss forced Gündogan to occupy the base of the midfield trio. João Félix was part of Xavi’s eleven. Neither he nor Atlético should have any doubts, if there were any, that returning at the end of the loan is unfeasible. His statements and his attitude to force his departure in the summer have left him without defense. It is no longer a question of Simeone mismanaging his talent. It’s already a skin issue. His plaque on the outskirts of the stadium was unpleasantly stained, and from the warm-up every time he touched the ball the shouting was deafening. Also every time he went to press. Probably, João Félix has not played under an environment as harsh and hostile towards his figure as the one he found last night at the Metropolitano.

It took João Félix almost ten minutes to touch his first ball because Atlético came out bossy and willing to short-circuit Barça’s release of the ball. De Paul caught a poor delivery from Ter Stegen near the edge of the area and put the ball squarely to Barrios. The youth player, to whom Simeone handed the baton in the middle, adjusted his game more than necessary. More intense and boisterous, Atlético overwhelmed Barça’s game. Gündogan’s pivot position kept him away from more damaging areas of creation. The ball was not flowing to Xavi’s team so there were no traces of either João Félix or Raphinha. He tried to break Atlético’s pressure by skipping lines with low passes from Ter Stegen to Lewandowski, who was with Griezmann. At the touch, they were a pasty team and the few times they seemed to be able to accelerate, a tactical foul by an Atlético player appeared.

It was Atlético’s first half hour, more because of revolutions than because of a threatening presence in the area. Cubarsí and Araujo exasperated Morata, who lived one of those nights permanently offside. Koundé also ended up taking the measure of Riquelme and contributed to the red and white blackout. He had not made Atlético’s government profitable and he witnessed the awakening of Barça through the spirit and judgment of Sergi Roberto. A well-connected play on the left ended in a passed cross that Raphinha headed badly at the far post. The second warning was with a poisonous balloon above the red and white defense that summoned Fermín with Oblak. The Slovenian goalkeeper won the duel. At the third time, Barça no longer forgave. Gündogan took off and the first time his talent approached the area, he invented a cutback and a filtered pass to Lewandowski who opened the red and white defense. The Pole’s center behind was pushed by João Félix with a delicate ankle turn. The Portuguese did not express joy, but there would surely be internal celebration. Already at the Camp Nou he was the executioner with his goal and his best performance as a Barça player and last night he began to shut down his former team. Xavi was expelled for protesting. The Barça coach seems to have revived Cruyff when he broke the deck to attract attention and spur his team. The same thing is announced in the middle of the course that does not follow that an avoidable expulsion is sought.

Atlético no longer recovered from João Félix’s blow. There was no time for the entry after the break of Memphis and Griezmann to have any effect. Not even two minutes had passed when De Paul had one of those rude losses that accompany him in recent games. Raphinha put Lewandowski into orbit and he won the race over Reinildo. Heeling and falling, he scored a goal from those forwards who have the goal in their heads. His right cross came in after hitting Oblak’s right post.

Immediately after that blow, Llorente was able to get Atlético into the game, but Ter Stegen responded to his volley with a low flight and a spectacular mitt. Fermín ended up bursting Atlético with a hard header from Lewandowski. The Pole put in the center, but Koundé’s previous incursion crowned the Frenchman’s game, first authoritative at the back and then deep and hammering on his side. With 0-3 there was no longer a game. Hardly the honor that Atlético sought with a goal and transitions by Barça that could have achieved a larger score.

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