Job done at Camp Nou: Three things learned
Barça maintained their 100% record at the Camp Nou
Barcelona were definitely better at home but still, no clean sheet has been achieved. Although two early goals may have had some expecting a walk in the park, the Catalans instead ended up grinding out a win against a Yellow Submarine that refused to be sunk too easily.
Barcelona have now scored 12 goals in three outings at home but have still conceded five, and the next team to visit are Inter Milan in the Champions League.
Junior Firpo bounced back from a dismal debut
Junior Firpo gave away a goal against Granada on Saturday on his full debut and was hooked at half-time but was back in from the start against Villarreal.
The 23-year-old could have been forgiven for showing a few nerves second time around but produced a much-improved display that will have everyone feeling a whole lot better.
An early overlapping run that earned a corner seemed to give him confidence, and this time around there were no mistakes in a positive showing from the youngster.
It was a tough test too after his last outing and up against the threat of Samuel Chukwueze, but this was a performance that Junior badly needed and should help him settle.
Ansu outshines struggling Suarez
Another poor performance from Luis Suarez saw the Uruguayan whistled by a section of supporters when he was replaced by Ansu Fati on 78 minutes.
It had been another tough night for the 32-year-old. Suarez was slow, his touch was lacking again and his passing was poor. He did not look at all surprised when his number came up.
Ansu’s introduction gave the crowd a lift, and there’s no doubt he made an impact during his short time on the pitch.
He curled an effort just wide of the far post, saw a penalty appeal turned down and won a free-kick just outside the penalty area in the closing minutes.
Villarreal coach, Javier Calleja, was impressed with the youngster’s brief cameo. He said: “Ansu Fati has amazed me, He has done everything right. His qualities are huge and the responsibility does not weight him down. It’s a joy to watch him play.”
The teenager is pushing for more minutes in the Barcelona attack. Suarez’s poor performance and concerns over Messi’s fitness means he may get them against Getafe.