Cesc Fabregas provides get out of jail card

Barcelona resolved their clash against Levante with more trouble than was expected. David Villa could have put the game to bed early but missed a penalty. Cesc Fabregás finally managed to topple the solid Levante defense with a sweet goal in the final minutes of the match.

It wasn’t the best Barcelona performance this season and Tito Vilanova chose to hold back his best players for the Champions league crunch game on Tuesday in Munich. It was an improvised defense without any central defenders but four lateral players. One piece of good news was the return of Eric Abidal. The Frenchman played elegantly and defended well on the few occasions in which he was called on to defend.

Cesc Fabregás celebrates against Levante

Messi and Pique were in the stands with Xavi, Pedro, Jordi Alba and Alexis starting on the bench. It was clear that Andrés Iniesta would be the main to lead Barca’s charge against Levante. The player assumed his role but did not find the partners necessary to carry out his plans. Tello tried again and again but messed up, committing errors in his passing game. David Villa also had a nightmare.

Evidence of Villa’s nightmare was his penalty miss after Iniesta was brought downjust outside the goal line. Keeper Keylor Navas stopped the shot, which sparked the beginning of a good performance in goal. The Costa Rican was chosen instead of Munúa and ended up proving the manager right.

Tactically, Levante was brilliant. With their lines closly woven together, they spun a web that had Barcelona clearly tangled. The Catalans clearly dominated possession but found no holes in the Levante defense. The Levante defenders along with the two midfielders, Diop and Mate, were outstanding.

The start of the second half started the same as the first. Levante remained faithful to their master plan and even had the audacity to attack. Acquafresca perforated the Catalan defense but the referee overruled the action for offside, which was clearly not. Referee Undiano Mallenco didn’t have a great afternoon. The ref neither saw a penalty just before the break by a hand by Diop in the box.

As the minutes ticked by, Barcelona were clearly stuck in the mud. Keylor was not called into action and all Barca’s attacks were in vain. Tito turned to plan B and brought on Xavi, Pedro and Alexis. Xavi led the final offensive while Alexis and Pedro were the breath of fresh air that Barcelona needed.

Leo Messi was missing but Cesc Fabregás was the saviour. The Barca number 4 showed that within the area he is also lethal. A move started by Alexis was completed by Fabregas to thread the ball through a tight spot. Barca was made to sweat for that one and next stop is Munich on Tuesday at the Allianz Arena.

About Aaron

My name's Aaron and I'm a great Barça fan. I like to tell it like it is and if there is something I don't like about the club or something that needs addressing, you'll know!


  1. Información Bitacoras.com…

    Valora en Bitacoras.com: Cesc Fabregas provided the get out of jail card that Barca needed to beat a stubborn Levante. It was a game with incidents where the ref failed to see a handball from levante and also disallowed a Levante goal for offside whe…..