Barcelona has experienced a dismal start to the season as they battle to reclaim their domestic and European dominance. Ronald Koeman’s team has lost their opening two Champions League games and faces a steep climb to reach the knockout rounds.
They were beaten 3-0 by Benfica on Wednesday night, following a 3-0 defeat to Bayern Munich earlier in the season.
And it has now been revealed that Koeman reportedly caused havoc in the Barcelona dressing room before this week’s defeat by abruptly changing his side’s formation.
Koeman started with a back four for most of Barcelona’s games this season but switched to a back three as they sought success in Portugal. However, according to Spanish daily SPORT, Koeman made the switch hours before the match and had not prepared his team for the system during the pre-match training sessions.
A few days prior, Eric Garcia had started Barcelona’s league encounter against Levante alongside Gerard Pique in a back four, and the team had kept a clean sheet.
However, in Portugal, the two became three following the inclusion of Ronald Araujo in the starting lineup. It undoubtedly threw the side’s defensive stability into disarray, and the trio labored the entire night against Benfica.
After just three minutes, the Catalans were behind 1-0 as Darwin Nunez scored Estadio da Luz.
Barcelona struggled to generate any momentum throughout the match. In their pursuit of an equalizer, they fell further down to a Rafa Silva strike before Nunez added his second and Benfica’s third of the evening.
And Barca’s agony was compounded just before the final whistle when Garcia was sent off for a second bookable offense. Barcelona manager Ronald Koeman has admitted the club will not win the Champions League following a 3-0 defeat to Benfica.
After being soundly defeated by Bayern Munich in the initial group stage, Barcelona suffered another humiliating defeat, heaping additional pressure on under-fire coach Koeman ahead of the Atletico Madrid match. Darwin Nunez started the score early on before adding a second from the penalty spot ten minutes later in the second half after Rafa Silva extended the lead.
Eric Garcia was sent off late in the game to cap off a terrible evening.
Barcelona is in disarray now, and even Koeman, their manager at the time of writing, believes they will miss out on the Champions League this season.
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