5 factors which may aid Barcelona's quest for the treble
The treble was for a long time considered the Holy Grail by Cules but following the club's great run this season, the team is firmly back in the hunt for its 3rd treble in 9 seasons.
Barcelona has recovered brilliantly following the 5-1 humiliation at the hands of Real Madrid in the Spanish Super Cup.
The Blaugrana hasn't lost a single game in La Liga this season. In fact, their only defeat of the season came up against local rivals Espanyol in the Copa Del Rey which could not cause any damage as Barca won 2-1 on aggregate.
The team is 7 points clear at the top of the league table, have reached the final of the Copa Del Rey and are well prepared for the upcoming Champions League return leg against Chelsea at the Nou Camp.
Here is a look at some of the factors that could help the Blue & Red achieve its dream of a third treble in 9 years:
#1 A rock-solid defence
Barca has always been a team which refuses to "Park the Bus" to win games and their flamboyant attack always ensured that they never had the need to change their tactics.
However, Luis Enrique had a tough time handling the team's defensive woes in his last season. Barcelona lost 3-0 at home to Juventus after a near to impossible comeback against Paris in the Champions League and these lapses in concentration also cost them heavily in the league.
Ernesto Valverde's hard task was clearly amplified after the sloppy defensive display in the Spanish Super Cup.
Now that we are past the halfway mark of the season, it seems that Valverde has identified and fixed the team's defensive issues. Barca has the second-best defence in La Liga (12) as only the ultra-defensive Atletico Madrid has conceded less (11).
They look more organized and the complacency seems to have been removed. Pique is back in form while Samuel Umtiti & Jordi Alba have been like new signings. To add even more surprise, Thomas Vermaelen continues to dazzle fans and pundits alike with his newfound brilliance.
The addition of signings Yerry Mina & Nelson Semedo has also given the team more defensive options and has improved the solidity at the back.