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Barcelona 1-1 Sevilla: 5 Talking Points as the Europa League winners end Ronald Koeman's winning start| La Liga 2020-21

Philippe Coutinho helped Barcelona force a share of the spoils against Sevilla.
Philippe Coutinho helped Barcelona force a share of the spoils against Sevilla.
Michel Sakr
CONTRIBUTOR
Modified 05 Oct 2020, 11:03 IST
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Barcelona welcomed Sevilla to the Camp Nou stadium on Matchday 5 of the 2020-21 La Liga, but the top weekend clash from Spain ended in a 1-1 draw.

Ronald Koeman kept most of his Barcelona playing-XI intact from the previous game as Lionel Messi played as the false 9 and was supported by Antoine Griezmann, Philippe Coutinho and the 17-year-old sensation Ansu Fati. In defence, Ronald Araujo deputised for the suspended Clement Lenglet.

On the other hand, Sevilla manager Julen Lopetegui started with the attacking trio of Lucas Ocampos, Suso and Luuk de Jong, with the former Barcelona midfielder Ivan Rakitic starting against the club he left in the summer.

The match started brilliantly with each side scoring a goal in the first ten minutes. The Barcelona defence failed to clear a corner kick and Luuk de Jong pounced on the rebound to give Sevilla the lead in the 8th minute.

However, just two minutes later, a Messi cross towards Fati was intercepted by Jesus Navas, but Coutinho was quicker than everyone else as he finished superbly in the top corner to put Barcelona level.

Unfortunately, the rest of the match didn't provide as much excitement as the opening minutes. Eventually both sides seemed pleased with a point apiece despite Barcelona's late flurry in stoppage time. On that note, here are the five major talking points from the match.


#5 Sergino Dest's arrival could spell the end of Sergi Roberto's days as a Barcelona starter

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Sergino Dest could soon become Barcelona
Sergino Dest could soon become Barcelona's starting right-back.

Sergi Roberto has been at Barcelona since he was 17 years old, going through the ranks at the Catalan club as a promising midfielder.

However, fate seemingly had other plans for the Spaniard, with the competition in Barcelona's midfield at the time proving too much for the youth product. Roberto soon found himself deployed as a right-back as the club struggled to replace Dani Alves after the latter's departure to Juventus in 2016.

Sergi Roberto has been able to maintain his spot in defence through sheer determination and hard work. But a section of the Barcelona fans have complained for his lack of technique and inability to support the attack at times.

On the other hand, young full-back Sergino Dest. who has just arrived at Barcelona, seems to have it all to succeed at the Camp Nou as he proved in his late appearance in the game against Sevilla.

Despite being deployed at his less favorite left flank to replace the injured Jordi Alba, the American added some much-needed pace and skills as Barcelona's tempo slowly improved towards the end of the match.

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With Ronald Koeman as a manager, the 19-year-old former Ajax player could be handed a starting spot on the right side instead of Sergi Roberto sooner rather than later.


#4 Philippe Coutinho finally gets a fair run at Barcelona

Philippe Coutinho on his way to finding his best form again (Pic courtesy Getty Images).
Philippe Coutinho on his way to finding his best form again (Pic courtesy Getty Images).

It's fair to say that Barcelona's record signing has been one of the club's biggest disappointments of the last decade. During Ernesto Valverde's ill-fated tenure, the Brazilian had been mostly deployed on the wings where he failed to deliver on his enormous transfer fee or replicate his Liverpool form.

However, this summer, Coutinho returned from his loan spell at Bayern Munich as a Champions League winner. He had even played a part in Barcelona's humiliating 8-2 defeat against the Bavarian giants in the quarter-finals.

The arrival of Koeman seems to have changed the little magician's fate at Catalunya as the Dutch coach has played him regularly, and most importantly, in the latter's preferred position as an attacking midfielder.

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Although Coutinho's performances remain far from ones during his golden days at Liverpool, the former Inter man is slowly regaining his form and confidence. He scored Barcelona's lone goal against Sevilla, which is definitely a step in the right direction.

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Published 05 Oct 2020, 11:03 IST
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