Player Ratings from a disappointing Clásico

Real Madrid CF v FC Barcelona - Super Copa de España Final
Real Madrid CF v FC Barcelona - Super Copa de España Final / Yasser Bakhsh/GettyImages

Well... what to say about this one? A complete reversal of the last Spanish Super Cup final. A complete domination at the hands of Real Madrid, a match in which no one performed up to expectations. Not the defense, the midfield, the coaching staff. A dismal performance that stings even more than the Girona loss for the simple fact of the opposition they faced. A match which Real Madrid didn't win, but Barça lost. Let's take a look at the player ratings from tonight.


Peña - 6/10: Hard to rate a match like this for a keeper. He was flat-footed on the first goal, but it's hard to completely fault him in a 1-on-1 situation against a speedy winger. With the other goals, there wasn't much he could do. He even guessed right on the penalty, but the strike was a good one. He did let four goals in, though... so the rating can't be good.


Araújo - 5/10 : He's a center back, not a right back. In my opinion, they should've started with the Uruguayan as the right center back and Koundé wide. A healthy fear of Madrid's attack down the right side is fine, but Araújo doesn't have the quality to play there. Koundé is a better passer, better positioned, and more adept going forward - right back qualities. Araújo is strong, fast, and very physical - center back qualities. Their roles should've been reversed. Araújo as a full back worked when Madrid had a 9 in the middle. Now they don't. He was also, probably rightly, sent off.

Koundé - 6/10 : I feel that Xavi suffers at times from Guardiola syndrome; trying so hard to pull off a tactics masterclass that he overthinks his setup and the team suffers for it. The Araújo right-back experiment that stopped Vinicius so well is over. Koundé just plays so much better as a right back than as a center back, and vice versa for Araújo. Vinicius in the first half just slightly angled his runs to be a bit more central and in doing so left Koundé stranded a ton. He wasn't fast enough to keep up with the Brazilian, and Vini's runs in behind just picked apart that right side of the defense. Koundé playing back also isolated Ferran, eliminating the fun link-up play and box pressure the Frenchman had been a part of in recent games.

Christensen - 5/10: The Dane's biggest weakness was preyed upon quite easily by Madrid in this one. He isn't fast, and whether it was Rodrygo or Vinicius, his lack of pace was very evident. For Madrid's second goal, he fell completely asleep and let Rodrygo make the easiest run he's ever made. The defense was just in absolute shambles all game. It could've easily been 6 or 7 goals for Madrid, to be honest.

Balde - 6/10: His performance was a 5/10, but I'll give him a 6 because it really wasn't his fault. With Sergi Roberto playing on the left, Balde was completely and totally isolated for much of the night. He was barely ever in a position to defend the speed of Madrid either, and the defense was forced into 3-on-3 situations often. Carvajal did a good job on him, but it didn't help at all that Valverde was always lurking nearby. It was disheartening, to say the least. Xavi seems quite unable to find a good role for Balde, and it's not a good sign.


De Jong - 5/10: A lot of fruitless passing back and forth, but no penetrating runs or passes through the lines. No bite, no danger whatsoever. Defensively, completely lifeless and unable to help the back line in any way. Brahim made him look silly, and everything else made him look unmotivated.

Gundogan - 6/10: I've become a big fan of Gundogan's game, but the entire midfield was very outclassed in this one. He held onto the ball for far too long at times and didn't have the kind of effectiveness he usually does. While far from the worst player, he wasn't very good.

Roberto - 5/10: What position was he playing exactly? Where was he supposed to be? He didn't do much down the middle, barely got into the half-spaces, and didn't provide any outlet wide. Roberto seems to be, quite often, one of the few players that understands Xavi's instructions, which makes me think that his lack of anything may be due to Xavi. Not sure, but not good either way.

Pedri - 6/10: Pedri has a natural talent for dribbling, but sometimes the game calls for quick, decisive passing. He held onto the ball for far too long at times, finding no outlets. There was one specific play where he sort of dribbled in circles at the edge of the box for five seconds, all the while his teammates calling for the ball. He did just come back from injury, but he's better than that.

Fermín - 6/10: Didn't get to do much of anything. He was alright, in the time that he played, but the game was over by the time he came in. He wasn't able to provide much, especially at 4-1.


Ferran - 6/10: He had a few good chances early on, but failed to take them with any real conviction. One he shanked wide, the other was easily saved by Lunin. There wasn't much else that he did in this one, to be honest. He was quite isolated, as was Balde, and his only outlet was often Araújo behind him. A bland performance from the Valencian.

Lewandowski - 6/10: I'm extremely sick and tired of seeing Lewandowski on the wing and Ferran in the middle. I don't mind Ferran in the middle; I very much mind Lewandowski roaming all over the pitch like he's Messi. He did score a great goal off the volley, which he haven't seen in a while from him, but it's hard to watch him out there sometimes.

Félix - 7/10: Actually one of the few bright spots for Barça. Even with Raphinha injured, why didn't Xavi use the three-forward lineup he's had success with recently? If it ain't broke, don't try fixing it. He drew fouls, got a good shot on target, and made things happen, in the limited time he had. Same as with Fermín and Yamal, though, it was never a game by the time they made their appearances. Even less so when Araújo was sent off.

Yamal - 7/10: He's usually a bit of a spark plug when he comes on, and he tried to make it work where Ferran couldn't. However, the isolation and defensive attention put on him didn't allow him to really make an impact. He always looks good out there, though, and he plays very maturely for his age.

For my money, a complete disaster of a game, one in which no one is safe from criticism. Xavi's setup was doomed from the start and predicated on the way Madrid played last season (they don't have Benzema anymore!). The players committed a ton of individual mistakes and played with a lethargy not seen in a while. Overall, a shambolic performance, one to move on from as quickly as possible.