La Liga: Ansu Fati shines again as Barcelona rallies to beat Valencia 3-1
Ansu Fati is quickly becoming Barcelona’s go-to player in the lack of Lionel Messi. The 18-year-old Fati made his very first start for Barcelona after a long injury layoff on Sunday, scoring an objective and making his team a penalty as the Catalan club halted its losing streak by rallying to beat Valencia 3-1 in the Spanish league.
Memphis Depay and Philippe Coutinho likewise scored for Barcelona as it relocated to seventh location, five points behind leader Genuine Sociedad and with a game in hand.
Fati returned to action last month after being sidelined for more than 10 months since of a knee injury, coming off the bench in three straight matches prior to getting his first start on Sunday and giving fans more hope that the club can reconstruct around him after Messi’s departure to Paris Saint Germain. He had already scored a few minutes after going into the game against Levante.
“We’ve always stated we need gamers like him,” said Barcelona coach Ronald Koeman, who was back on the bench after a suspension of 2 league matches following a red card for complaining.
“It was his first start and it was already decided with the doctors that he would just play for about an hour. We do not desire to overwork him in such an important week for us.”
Barcelona was coming off 2 defeats before the global break– 2-0 at Atlético Madrid in the league and 3-0 at Benfica in the Champions League. It had won just when in its last six matches in all competitors.
Barcelona has started a three-game house stint that Koeman called essential to getting the team back on track. It will next play a critical Champions League game against Eager beaver Kyiv on Wednesday and after that the first “clásico” of the season versus Genuine Madrid.
“It was a very important win, we are in an essential week in the season,” Barcelona midfielder Frenkie de Jong said. “We began it well by earning points and gaining confidence, that’s very crucial for the club today.”
The loss extended Valencia’s winless streak to five matches. It dropped to ninth location in the league. José Luis Gayà opened the scoring for the visitors with a powerful long-range shot five minutes into the match at the Camp Nou Stadium, but Fati equalised from outside the location in the 13th and won the charge kick converted by Depay in the 41st.
Valencia grumbled about the penalty call, stating Gayà touched the ball before Fati fell inside the location.
“We are annoyed,” Valencia coach José Bordalás said.
Coutinho, ruined by injuries since going back to Barcelona, sealed the victory from close variety in the 85th for his very first goal with the Catalan club in nearly a year. American defender Sergiño Dest made the pass for the Brazilian. Dest came off in the final minutes to allow the debut of Sergio Aguero, who was signed by Barcelona from Manchester City for this season but was yet to play as he had been recovering from injury.
Barcelona are two points behind Madrid, Sevilla, Osasuna and protecting champion Atlético Madrid. Madrid and Atlético had their weekend games postponed because some players were on worldwide task with their national groups.
Barcelona’s delegate members previously Sunday approved the club’s financial represent the 2020-21 season with losses of 481 million euros ($557 million). They also gave their approval to a budget plan of an operating income of 765 million euros ($886 million) for 2021-22.
“We have to look forward and concentrate on getting the club back to its old self,” club president Joan Laporta said. “We have actually been working relentlessly for six months to get the club out of the institutional pit that it has fallen into. But we are not going to have the ability to fix this situation overnight.”
Third-place Sevilla rebounded from its very first loss of the season with a 1-0 victory at Celta Vigo, with Rafa Mir scoring the winner early in the 2nd half. It was the 4th loss in 5 house video games for 16th-place Celta.
Osasuna won 2-1 at Villarreal with Ezequiel “Chimy” Ávila scoring the winner for the visitors in the 87th. Lucas Torró had actually opened the scoring for Osasuna in the very first half and Gerard Moreno adjusted early in the 2nd half. It was the third straight success for fifth-place Osasuna. Villarreal remained 11th.
With Radamel Falcão remaining on the bench, sixth-place Rayo Vallecano beat 14th-place Elche 2-1 at home.
Published at Sun, 17 Oct 2021 23:38:03 -0500