UEFA Champions League 2017/18: Sporting CP 0-1 FC Barcelona, Player Ratings
FC Barcelona visited Sporting CP for their second match of the Champions League group stage after a resounding 3-0 win against Juventus in the opening fixture. Barcelona dominated the possession early on and started well, but couldn't get past the Lisbon defence in the first half as the score remained 0-0.
The second half too, like the first half, didn't have too many goals. Barcelona took their foot off the gas after Sebastian Coates unknowingly deflected the ball into his own net to give the away side the lead. The Catalans now top their group in UCL and are yet to drop a point in the season.
Here, let’s take a look at how the players fared for both the teams.
Rui Patricio: 7.5/10
Quite an amazing outing just like his opposite number. Pulled off a few saves, including a fantastic stop off a late Paulinho shot after being exposed one-v-one vs him.
Cristiano Piccini: 6/10
Piccini had a decent outing. He did struggle initially against Jordi Alba's pace but grew comfortable as the match wore on. He fared better than a lot of his teammates whenever he ventured up the field.
The centre-back was solid for the most part of the game. However, he would be disappointed to have scored an unlucky own goal, which he could have done nothing about.
Out against his former team with a point to prove, he put in a stellar shift. He never allowed Barcelona attackers much space and put in important tackles.
Disappointing night for the fullback against a familiar foe. He was run ragged by Roberto and Semedo throughout the match. In attack too his contribution was almost next to nothing.
The Portuguese international had a mixed bag of a game. He shielded his defence well and won a few odd challenges but could not open up play wide much as his team struggled to create chances.
Battaglia had a decent game. Though he was not much influential in possession, just like his partner in the double pivot, Carvalho, he made sure to make up to that with astute defensive performance in the middle of the park.
Gelson Martins: 4/10
The winger was wasteful, unimaginative and regressive in possession. He could not get better off Jordi Alba once. His performance left a lot to be desired.
Just like other attackers for Sporting CP, Bruno Fernandez too disappointed a lot. He could not create any clear cut chance for his team and missed a great opportunity to level late in the game when his shot was saved by Ter Stegen.
Acuna too, like Gelson was absolutely wasteful. He was kept well under the wraps by Semedo and on the few occasions whenever he did wriggle free off him, his deliveries were poor.
Doumbia was absolutely anonymous during the time he was on the pitch. He had to be taken off in the first half due to injury.
Bas Dost: 5.5/10
The service to the tall Dutch striker was poor as he struggled to make his mark on the game. He did win his fair share of aerial duels to get his team going.
Bruno Cesar: 5/10
On for Acuna, the veteran Brazilian did not fare any better as he lacked any cutting edge to make a difference.
J. Silva: 5.5/10
On for Coentrao, he did not make quite a mark on the game. However, he did keep things simple and moving.