Barcelona have now won four of their last five games. The past three wins were in a convincing fashion as well and many thought that it would be a walkover in the match against Elche. Barca are slowly regaining their intimidating form whereas Elche is struggling in the lower half of the table. However, that is not how the game went and it was the home side that took the lead. In the dying moments of the first half, an uncharacteristic mistake by Pedri led the ball away to Fidel Chaves who made no mistakes and found the bottom corner of the net.
Barca headed into the tunnels exhausted with their hard work but nothing to show for themselves. Xavi Hernandez in a post-match interview said that he was annoyed and angry at the team because they had worked a lot but could not find the back of the net due to poor finishing. It is true, the Catalans did have the better chances with Frenkie de Jong almost scoring twice but the Spanish goalkeeper, Édgar Badía, was on top form and did not allow the Dutchman to score. Xavi said,
"“I was angry at halftime because we didn’t deserve to be behind after what we had created. (Elche goalkeeper) Edgar was brilliant. I was annoyed, angry.”“But I was hopeful that if we attacked better, we would win. That’s what I told the players. I made a positional change (Ferran on) and it worked well for us.”Source Sport"
He then went on to say that they deserved the win since they created more chances but he also gave props to a well-drilled Elche side who were aggressive but well disciplined in the back as well. Barca are now third on the table and could extend their lead over Atletico Madrid if they win their game in hand.
How would you rate Barcelona’s performance against Elche?