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28.02.2008 13:00

Better in everything but goals

Jordi Clos

Barça outdid Valencia in just about every aspect last night, but were matched in terms of what counts most: goals.

It is not often that two high ranking teams meet and there are so many huge differences between them in certain aspects of a game. Against Valencia, Barça maintained the excellent form shown in Glasgow and against Levante, and controlled the game. The big difference with respect to previous game was effectiveness, in that Barcelona failed to win the cup semi final.

70.57%n possession

qm3d5542.jpgKoeman’s side gave Barcelona all the possession, as they sought to create danger on the counter attack. Valencia enjoyed so little possession that the difference was extraordinary: 70.57% for the home side and 29.43% for the visitors. Barça also had far more shots on goal, 29 compared to just 2 for the others side. 14 of those 29 shots were on target, but only Xavi’s goal 4 minutes into injury actually hit the back of the net.

Valencia prove effective

fcb-valencia3.jpgThat late cancelling out of Villa’s earlier goal from his side's only chance other than a poorly placed header from Helguera in a set play, finally levelled affairs. Barça had supplied 47 crosses into the area before that, compared to just 9 by Valencia, and were never caught offside. But Barcelona’s back line moved so far forward that three offside calls were made against the visitors.

It was clearly Barça all the way, but where they failed to outdo Valencia was in terms of goals scored, which meant a game they clearly deserved to win ended in a 1-1 draw.
Better in everything but goals
15 shots by Messi and Eto'o
Leo Messi and Samuel Eto'o shot the most times last night. The Argentinian’s 8 and the Cameroonian’s 7 made 15 separate chances, but every time they hit the Valencia defence or goalkeeper or went wide of goal.

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