Celta Vigo 1-1 Barcelona: 5 Talking Points
Final score: Celta Vigo 1-1 Barcelona
Goals: Jose Arnaiz 15' (Barcelona), Pione Sisto 31' (Celta Vigo)
Celta Vigo played host to Barcelona in the first leg of the round of 16 Copa del Rey tie. Barcelona rested few of their first team stars like Lionel Messi, Luis Suarez, and Andres Iniesta, while Marc-Andre ter Stegen, Ivan Rakitic, and Jordi Alba started on the bench.
Record signing Ousmane Dembele returned to the Barca bench after a lengthy injury layoff. On the other hand, Celta Vigo did not experiment too much with their lineup.
Barca took the lead early in the first half through Jose Arnaiz, but it finished all square at halftime as Pione Sisto equalized at the half-hour mark. In spite of some good chances, both teams could not score the decisive goal and the game finished 1-1 at the Estadio de Balaidos.
On that note, let's take a look at the key talking points from the Copa del Rey clash:
#5 The Celestes were the better side in the first half
The home side started the game well and settled into a nice passing rhythm very early in the game. They created some good chances in the first 10 minutes and put Barcelona on the back foot right from the starting whistle.
Unzue’s men moved the ball at pace on both flanks and never gave a moment of peace for the Barcelona fullbacks, Lucas Digne and Nelson Semedo.
For their positive start, it was Valverde’s men who took the lead in the game. Arnaiz fired in a low cross from Andre Gomez to put Barcelona ahead.
They dominated possession, but their passing in the final third let them down. Celta Vigo equalized in the 31st minute as Barcelona was caught on the counter. It ended all square at the break, but Celta Vigo were certainly the better side during the first 45 minutes.