Barcelona 2-0 Inter Milan: 5 Hits and Flops
- Barcelona were comfortable during their 2-0 home win over Inter, taking them top of Group B. Who impressed and who struggled?
Goals from Rafinha and Jordi Alba either side of half-time helped seal a comfortable home victory for Barcelona, against an out-of-sorts Inter Milan side who struggled under pressure in Spain. Even without their talisman Lionel Messi, the Catalans completely dominated proceedings and produced a stellar performance.
The result sees Ernesto Valverde's men top Group B at the halfway stage in this season's UEFA Champions League group stage competition - a win made even more pivotal after Tottenham surrendered a late lead away against PSV in the day's early kick-off. With that in mind, who impressed while others wilted under the bright lights at the Nou Camp?
#5 Flop: Joao Miranda
It was a difficult evening for the experienced Brazilian center-back, who had to remain continually focused throughout - easier said than done against a Barca side who pose various attacking threats and different ways with which they hurt opposition teams.
One of those ways is the speed with which they counter-attack. Miranda, being the slowest in the visitors' backline, was highlighted as a weak link and rightly targeted by Luis Suárez and co. His positioning was okay at times but equally wayward too often, which allowed the hosts enough space and confidence to persist in utilizing width, stretching the play and creating goalscoring chances with a worrying regularity.
He made four clearances, two tackles, an interception and blocked a shot - but committed three fouls and was perhaps fortunate not to have given away a spot-kick during his battles with Suárez in the box.
While center-back partner Milan Skriniar was caught ball-watching for Alba's finish, his more experienced teammate did not lead by example alongside him. You could argue that him being 34-years-old and on the decline is a genuine factor, but he's the same age as goalkeeper Samir Handanovic - Inter's best performer in the match - and Juventus' Giorgio Chiellini, who excelled against Manchester United last night. Not good enough.