Barcelona have won their first home game of the season and remain unbeaten to start the La Liga campaign thanks to a dominant 4-0 victory over Real Valladolid at the Spotify Camp Nou. Barça were dominant and played brilliant attacking football throughout the evening, and scored four very good goals to pick up all three points and send the crowd home happy.
The first 45 minutes were about as good as Barça fans could have hoped to see from their team. The Blaugrana were seriously impressive in the opening period, dominating possession and creating loads of chances with great attacking football.
Their defending was also excellent, especially with their high pressing which constantly took the ball away from Valladolid in dangerous positions. Jules Kounde looked comfortable and sharp at right-back in his debut, and Ronald Araujo was dominant in his favorite position at center-back. The midfield was alive, and the front three was unplayable.
And the goals that they fully deserved came in due time: the first was after an excellent cross by Raphinha that was finished at the far post by Robert Lewandowski, and the second came just before halftime when Ousmane Dembélé found Pedri inside the box and the Spaniard found the bottom corner with a beautiful finish.
At halftime, a dominant Barça were up two goals and had the potential to get a big win if they could keep up the good work in the second half.
Barça didn’t need to keep playing with so much energy and intensity after getting a two-goal lead, and the played smart football to manage the game, keep the ball and continue attacking without taking unnecessary risks at the other end. Valladolid kept trying to defend as well as they could, but the Blaugrana were just too good.
The third goal took a little while to come after a few very good chances were missed, but it was worth the wait: after another great run and assist from Dembélé, Lewandowski showed his talent and confidence and decided to backheel the ball into the net, with the help of a slight deflection from Joaquín that didn’t take away from the brilliance of the finish. It was finally 3-0 Barça, and the game was over.
Valladolid went forward looking for a consolation goal and almost got it on a wild sequence in which they had three shots on target in less than 30 seconds, but two great saves from Marc André ter Stegen and a goal-line clearance from Kounde kept Barça’s clean sheet intact.
The Blaugrana continued to attack and look for goals in the dying minutes, and found the fourth when Lewandowski’s shot inside the box hit the crossbar but Sergi Roberto was there to score on the rebound. The final whistle came shortly after to give Barça their first three points at home this season.
Barça played this one exactly the way a championship contender does when they face a weaker team at home: serious, professional, attacking from the start and winning with ease. It’s impressive and encouraging, and Xavi Hernández’s fingerprints are all over this team. Do more of this and this season will be a lot of fun.