Assessing 2013/2014

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Assessing 2013/2014

Post by BarcaKizz on Fri May 16, 2014 7:06 pm

Hi guys.

Nice to check up on here again. I've not been here for the season and I've missed most of your thoughts but I've caught some and can imagine the rest. Even so, I want to gauge the ultimate reaction to what's happened this past year.

I'm posting this now, because I think the result of the league is irrelevant really. Whether we win tomorrow or not, I don't think it changes how good we have been this season, nor does it point to us making any sort of progression. So for me, we can already judge this season, the silverware in a way is secondary.

Simple question really. How do you view this past season? What have been the significant positive and negative developments. Your thoughts on players, Tata Martino's efforts and anything else significant.

I will add more, but to start here are my main points:

Marc Bartra

Are there any positives to this season? Maybe one (or two) and for me the main one is Marc Bartra. I didn't think he had it in him tbh. Not that I didn't see his talent, but I didn't see the chances ever coming and I saw it more likely he'd eventually suffer the same fate as Fontas and many others. But he's shown real heart. It was probably my favourite moment of the season when he scored in the Copa del Rey (obviously... moments later I was broken), and I screamed my lungs out and was hugging randoms in the crowd. A moment I won't forget, because it symbolised his development for me. We knew he was a great ball-player and he's now showing it, with defensive bravery I didn't know he had. He must be part of going forward, even though we must sign players. I'm very pleased with him.

Neymar

For me its the second silver lining. I wouldn't blame any failures on him. Its not been the perfect first year. He struggled to replicate his goalscoring (which I think will come) and he struggled with injury and then I believe the off-pitch drama had a real effect on him. However, we've added a very good player to our roster. First time I saw him from the stands I could see that he was probably a top 5 player I've seen live. He's magic and I think its only a matter of time and good management and we'll see it.

Tata

Firstly, I must say this, because I think its too often forgotten and underrated. He never had a preseason. Remember that, I'm not saying it excuses everything, but it made his job something where he pretty much started on the back foot, and it made it difficult to ever really kick off.

I don't think he's a bad manager and maybe if he did have a preseason and the sort of situation Luis Enrique (?) will be in where he has funds for transfers etc. he may have been a success. The reality is though, he now has to go. He's lost the players in my opinion as well as the fans and media (which is very important here). He also seemed to be resigned to leaving quite a while ago and the desire is very important for this job.

I think before Christmas we saw that he had an idea, and it could have been forming... but then for some reason it went away. I don't know whether it was this chat with Xavi or other players, the public pressure regarding style or whether he made the decision himself... but I felt like we were trying to find our feet and work to something and then all of a sudden we stopped looking for new solutions and decided to fall back on what we had before... though in a much decayed, inferior form.

He then seemed to lose authority and stopped having faith in his ability to control players. I can't think of any other reason why he made such ridiculous selections in key matches. Anyone could see that Neymar wasn't working on the right, is far more effective on the left and Iniesta was far more effective in midfield. Anyone could see what we needed was someone stretching the park up front. Anyone could see that this overload with Cesc, Xavi and Iniesta was completely unnecessary.

The thing is, either he's an absolute idiot, or he wasn't doing what he really thought was right. Or I guess the third way is that all this pressure has driven him mad and he is just completely confused and can't think straight.

At the end of the day, I don't really think he's brought anything new or positive to our game. I think some of the "clear ideas" he was supposed to have could have been good (verticality, the odd change in tempo and direct approach etc), but it never happened (at least not correctly).

It's time to say Tata...

General

Like I said, I don't think we've really made any progress this season. It's not been the absolute disaster everyone says though. However, I think we are still in the league more because the league has been a bit weak and Atleti and Madrid have made mistakes as well. We've been very lucky. Also whether we win or not, we are not working towards a future. If we do win, this is a decaying team and in football, you always have to think about improving. It is worrying, because for the first time in a while, its hard to see where our future lies. It will take some bold calls and leadership.

Anyway, I'm not sure that that was all that insightful. I may have dragged on. Really I'm here to hear your point of views since I haven't spoken with most of you in a while. I will say though, being lucky enough to hold a season pass, even though its not been a perfect season, watching Barca continues to be an absolute joy. I still feel very lucky, nothing quite like it.
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Re: Assessing 2013/2014

Post by BarrileteCosmico on Fri May 16, 2014 7:23 pm

I'm in mobile so I can't comment on depth but what makes you think Tata lost the players? In nearly every interview the players back him and praise him. I agree he should go but I can't agree with this particular point.

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Re: Assessing 2013/2014

Post by BarcaKizz on Fri May 16, 2014 8:12 pm

@BarrileteCosmico wrote:I'm in mobile so I can't comment on depth but what makes you think Tata lost the players? In nearly every interview the players back him and praise him. I agree he should go but I can't agree with this particular point.

1) Its part of me personally justifying why he made a number of outrageously bizarre decisions. As I said, otherwise his tactical choices make zero sense to me and then he's just as good as an idiot.

2) A few players have said this, but its not all that surprising that someone like Iniesta has responded in a respectful manner to his boss who is still under contract. I wouldn't say those press-conferences rule this possibility out.

3) Simply that change of style I talked about. It seemed like all of a sudden he decided that they needed to go back to having possession and playing less direct balls. One theory is that the players were not mentally adapting and wanted to go back to that old way. Tata eventually gave in.

As I said before, its just a theory. I can't ever say for sure what exactly went wrong with Tata. I don't think/or want to think he is a bad manager, but it went wrong and this is one possibility. His very dejected look and approach with the media right now also suggests there is something wrong like this, that he feels he can't do any more.

One conclusion is that he's lost the players. I'm not sure that its the right one. What do you think?
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Re: Assessing 2013/2014

Post by jibers on Sun May 18, 2014 12:51 pm

@BarrileteCosmico wrote:I'm in mobile so I can't comment on depth but what makes you think Tata lost the players? In nearly every interview the players back him and praise him. I agree he should go but I can't agree with this particular point.

All the journalist said that Tata lost it. All the ones I deem credible and it was obvious. On his first training session he was approached by Iniesta and Xavi saying Barcelona did things in a certain way, lost his authority straight away. Said he won't change anything and slowly started changing things. A coach must adapt to his players. Barcelona are clearly not a counter attacking team. For me the biggest mistake was taking the team away from Messi. The team played with 0 positional play, no pressing, disorganised. At one point the team looked like it was stuck in between counter attacking and playing its more progressive passing style but it did neither well. Towards the end Barcelona were essentially playing joga bonita, no tactical discipline, players walking, it no effort, looking uninterested. I don't blame Tata, I blame Rosell. That man is subconsciously trying to destroy Laporta and Cruyffs legacy. The whole falling out with Messi at the start, the Neymar saga, the players signed against FIFA rules etc

For those old enough to remember, does this not have a familiar Barcelona feeling before operation blue elephant was carried out? Back to a time were Barcelona were mismanaged both on and off the field. Hopefully Lucho can come in and shock the players. And the sooner this board goes, the better tbh.

Messi is getting too much critcism. TBH, I agree that he has been walking a bit too much. Knowing what I do about his personality and what he is like, I won't be surprised if he was told to not run tbh. Maybe subconscioulsy he was taking it easy so as to not get injured before the WC. What I am hearing is that he is pissed off that Tata took the team away from him, and I agree with that. Why make your best player have less touches? Makes 0 sense to me tbh. He has had a good season but by his ridiculous standards, it was a below average season for him. Idgaf about stats, and I never have. He is one that has not benefited by the lack of tactics done by Tata. I will say this, is it a coincidence that Pedro and Sanchez form dropped once he came back? His mood and the position he plays affects the team too much and perhaps he needs to show more leadership. Hopefully Lucho can straighten him out, if he can't, then Barcelona should cut their losses imo. ATM he is bigger than the club.

Neymar has done well enough for me. When he first joined he did well. His finishing could do some work but you could see that he felt a bit restricted. Another aspect he needs to improve on is his decision making when he first receives the ball. He always tries to turn or do a trick when a simple pass to a team-mate close by would suffice. A lot of the times he got dispossessed in the first press by the opposition. Again, under the right coaching he will become one of the best players in the world, that I have no doubt about. Would have loved to see him coached by Pep. He also needs to build his strength up and become more like Dinho because they have quite similar styles but Dinho was a far superior play maker and Nerman is a better suited to wide player.

What baffles me the most is when I see fans like donut saying Barcelona should start playing counter as a tactic very baffling stuff. The fans wont accept it and it would contradict the very ethos of the club. Sure they won't play like Peps Barcelona, but in terms of philosphy, it would be a huge mistake and it would cost them more money as La Masia players are suited better to the progressive passing game.

One final issue, the club has no overall strategy in place atm and that needs to be fixed ASAP. Whether people like it or not, politics and football are one and the same in Spain, especially at a club like Barcelona. Apologies if this is a bit disjointed. I was just typing as I was thinking. Will add more later. Peace.

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Re: Assessing 2013/2014

Post by alexjanosik on Sun May 18, 2014 2:25 pm

Positives:Alexis Sanchez.i didnt like him in his first season and criticized him a lot then.He had a poor first season but showed signs of improvement towards the end.Had an inconsistent second season but towards the end I felt that he was really starting to find his feet.
And this season he has grown in leaps and bounds.He is now our best player on the right wing by far.I think he has had a very good season and for my money our best player this season.Almost won us the league on the last matchday too.It would be a travesty if we sell him.It would not be fair to Alexis and it would mean we have to search for a right forward as none of our other forwards can play there competently.
I am struggling to think of any other positive.Bartra maybe but I am not fully convinced by him.I think he is a prospect and next season is going to be crucial for him.

The negatives are too many to list.I think this was a transitional season and in a way its good that we didnt win the league.It will force changes that need to be made.had we won,the status quo might have continued.

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Re: Assessing 2013/2014

Post by windkick on Sun May 18, 2014 11:33 pm














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Re: Assessing 2013/2014

Post by windkick on Sun May 18, 2014 11:38 pm








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Re: Assessing 2013/2014

Post by messixaviesta on Mon May 19, 2014 8:52 am

windkick, excellent illustration. Where did you find all this?


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Re: Assessing 2013/2014

Post by windkick on Mon May 19, 2014 10:58 pm

I follow a bunch of random Barca fans on tumblr and I found it on there

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Re: Assessing 2013/2014

Post by futbol on Mon May 19, 2014 11:22 pm

13/14 assessment: Make the players play like turds and hoof the ball all over the place so they get hungry for proper tiki-taka again, paving the way for Luis Enrique aka "Pep 2.0 on steroids and actual knowledge in the transfer market".

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Re: Assessing 2013/2014

Post by messixaviesta on Tue May 20, 2014 4:56 am

@windkick wrote:I follow a bunch of random Barca fans on tumblr and I found it on there

Oh cool.

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Re: Assessing 2013/2014

Post by neuro11 on Tue May 20, 2014 1:02 pm

@windkick wrote:






but the scandal is missing there....dont forget we had two big scandal and president resigning.....
btw, is it the most eventful season in barca (negative sense) history???

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Re: Assessing 2013/2014

Post by jibers on Tue May 20, 2014 1:08 pm

@neuro11 wrote:
@windkick wrote:






but the scandal is missing there....dont forget we had two big scandal and president resigning.....
btw, is it the most eventful season in barca (negative sense) history???

No. This is actually back to normality for Barcelona. This is what Barcelona historically has been like dude.

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Re: Assessing 2013/2014

Post by windkick on Tue May 20, 2014 1:50 pm

My assessment is that this season, at least in terms of what happened on the pitch, had to happen. It seems it was the only way the club was willing to do what it hasnt done for a the past 3 seasons, which is actually make moves in areas that need reinforcements. Because of our disastrous season it seems like this will be one of our busiest summers, and its annoying that it took all this too happen for the club to get up off their asses and high horses.

As far as all the scandals, Tito passing, Valdes announcing he's leaving and his injury, Puyol retiring, Neymars case scandal, Messi's Tax problems, the pre-season tour, Rossell stepping down, Messi's injury, transfer ban, and whatever else I'm forgetting....it's flat out horrible and embarrassing. It's also sad; some of our greatest most loyal personal have left us in such a dismal season, and it's not a way to see them off. Same goes for our beloved Tito. I had a feeling that whoever took over this season on short notice would struggle, but I had no idea it would be to this extent with all the side show going on as well. I wish Tata luck btw, seems like a nice guy even if I didn't agree with him at times.

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Re: Assessing 2013/2014

Post by windkick on Tue Jun 03, 2014 5:24 am

http://www.insidespanishfootball.com/110880/la-liga-stars-fill-the-champions-league-squad-of-the-season/

When was the last time we only had one player (and it's not Messi) in one of these lists. That tells you everything about our season

UEFA Technical Study Group – 2013-2014 Squad of the Season

Goalkeepers

Thibaut Courtois (Club Atlético de Madrid)
Manuel Neuer (FC Bayern München)

Defenders

Diego Godín (Club Atlético de Madrid)
Philipp Lahm (FC Bayern München)
Daniel Carvajal (Real Madrid CF)
Pepe (Real Madrid CF)
Sergio Ramos (Real Madrid CF)

Midfielders

Gabi (Club Atlético de Madrid)
Andrés Iniesta (FC Barcelona)
Toni Kroos (FC Bayern München)
Ángel Di María (Real Madrid CF)
Luka Modrić (Real Madrid CF)
Xabi Alonso (Real Madrid CF)

Forwards

Marco Reus (Borussia Dortmund)
Diego Costa (Club Atlético de Madrid)
Arjen Robben (FC Bayern München)
Zlatan Ibrahimović (Paris Saint Germain FC)
Cristiano Ronaldo (Real Madrid CF)

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