Sevilla vs Barcelona - Three things we learned

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Not for the first time this season, Barcelona were outplayed for long periods of a game. A depleted Sevilla side, missing seven first-team regulars, were too good for the Catalans who slipped to their second loss of this La Liga season.

It was the first victory Unai Emery has managed over Barca at the 21st time of asking and with four different clubs and no one can say that it wasn't deserved despite the pressure that the visitors placed on the home side's goal in the last quarter hour.

Without the intelligence of Messi and the guile of Iniesta, Barca looked a shadow of the team that won the treble last year. A shape of things to come perhaps.


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Let's take a look at three things that authored the outcome of this game...

Wrong line up from Enrique

Luis Enrique will again have to take this one on the chin. A starting selection that looked wrong from the moment the team sheets were read out.

Marc Bartra's Barca career must be over because if he cannot displace Jeremy Mathieu when the Frenchman is in such poor form, there are obviously issues.

Kevin Gameiro waltzed past him as though he wasn't there before putting in an inch-perfect cross from which Michael Krohn-Dehli deservedly opened the scoring.

Surely Javier Mascherano's pace would've been better utilised in the position rather than playing him in midfield alongside Sergio Busquets.

Munir El-Haddadi continues to disappoint too, and it must be time for Sandro Ramirez to be given a shot in the starting line up.


No doubt which team wanted to win the game more either.

Sevilla went at it from the first whistle, never allowing Barca to settle. For all of their pretty passing carousels, the visitors were frequently bullied off of the ball, ceding possession time and again.

The Andalusians were first to every ball until the last quarter of the game once Neymar had scored his penalty. Only then did Barca want to make a game of it.

Even Luis Suarez, so often combative and competitive at the centre of Barca's attacking trio, had his edge diluted.

If the Catalans want to retain any of the silverware from last season, they've got to be braver than this away from home.

Sergio Rico

Unai Emery will be well pleased that Sergio Rico came out of the game with a match-winning performance.

Three times in 60 seconds after halftime, the custodian pulled off a string of top-class saves to keep the Blaugrana at bay.

His energy and competence were on show throughout the 90 minutes as he commanded his area and back four.

When a keeper is in such inspired form, it's infectious and his team-mates responded in kind.

The hosts can thank their lucky stars that the woodwork came to their rescue on four occasions, but Rico deserved such luck. A draw or defeat would've been hard on a side who were bottom of the table just a couple of weeks ago.

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