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La Liga 2016/17: Valencia CF 2-3 FC Barcelona - Player Ratings

Valencia CF v FC Barcelona - La Liga : News Photo
Messi scored a late winner to grab all three points for Barcelona

Barcelona took the spoils in the ding dong battle against a rejuvenated Valencia side. A five-goal thriller at Mestalla saw both teams go toe-to-toe in this exciting La Liga battle.

Lionel Messi scored a brace as he rallied Barca from 2-1 down to clinch the game 3-2, scoring the winner from the spot in the dying seconds of the game. Munir's valiant cameo went down the drain as the hosts crumbled in the last moments of the game.

Here are the player ratings from this exciting game.


Valencia

Diego Alves: 7/10

Valencia's keeper did exceedingly well in the first half to keep Barca's score in check with his crucial saves. He was decisive in giving his team a chance against the vastly superior Barcelona side. He could've been better at organising his defence during set-pieces.

Martin Montoya: 6/10

The former Barcelona man was patchy during his 45 minutes on the pitch. Montoya did well at times against the Neymar-Iniesta axis down Barcelona’s left side channel but was brutally exposed when he dealt with Neymar in one-on-one situations. It was a performance which wasn't bad but was miles off from being good as well.

Ezequiel Garay: 7/10

The veteran defender marshalled a nervy Valencia defence gallantly for most of the game. His presence in the box kept Suarez in check. He did well to cover whenever his defence was left reeling.

Eliaquim Mangala: 6/10

The Manchester City loanee surprisingly had a decent game against the likes of Messi, Neymar, and Suarez. He was his usual edgy self, but gave a glimpse of a quintessential Prandelli centre-half.

Jose Luis Gayá: 6/10

He managed to hold his own against Messi down the left flank before being hauled off due to injury. Although he could've done a bit more to assist Nani in his attacking adventures, nonetheless it was a disciplined performance from the Valencia prodigy.

Enzo Pérez: 8/10

The Argentine was simply ballistic in midfield for the hosts. He led not only his midfield but also his team from the front. Throwing himself in the line of fire and steadying the ship with his calm demeanour, Perez gave a captain's performance at Mestalla.

Mario Suárez: 7/10

If Enzo Perez was Batman then Mario Suarez was a more than able Robin to him. He complimented his captain and midfield partner brilliantly, especially with his distribution and the way he repurposed the second ball won by him.

Valencia CF v FC Barcelona - La Liga : News Photo
Captain Enzo Perez was impressive in midfield for Valencia

João Cancelo: 7/10

The young right back terrified Digne for most of the first half with his raw pace and slick skills. And in second, he played his role with some panache as he kept a slippery Neymar fairly in control.

Daniel Parejo: 7/10

It was all grit and hard work in the first half for him when Valencia lacked any direction in attacking department. He sprung to life in the second half after Munir's arrival and was a steely performance by Parejo.

Luis Nani: 8/10

The Portuguese winger turned the clock back today with his brilliant performance. The amount of respect shown to him by Barca defenders while facing him spoke a lot about his personality on the pitch. It was a vintage display from Valencia's talisman.

Rodrigo: 7/10

Rodrigo couldn't get into his stride for most of the game as he struggled to shrug off Mascherano. But he showed a true centre forward's instincts when he dabbed the ball past Ter Stegen to put Valencia in lead. He needs to work a lot on his off the ball movement if he wants to hold onto his place as the attacking focal point of his team.

Substitutes

Aymen Abdennour: 6/10

The former Monaco man was at his no-nonsense best down the left side. He tried to nip every Barcelona offence right in the bud, with some success. It was a performance which impressed the Mestalla's faithful. But he undid all his good work by conceding a cheap penalty deep into stoppage time.

Munir El Haddadi: 9/10

The La Masia graduate gave Barca a rude reminder of his capabilities when he singlehandedly turned the game for Los Che. He played a key role in both the goals and was the home team's best player by some margin.

Santi Mina: 5/10

Mina must be kicking himself now for wasting two promising counter attacks in a space of 5 minutes. It was his callous and sloppy attitude which pegged Valencia back in a resurgent second half.

Barcelona

Valencia CF v FC Barcelona - La Liga : News Photo

Marc-Andre Ter Stegen: 6/10

The German shot stopper looked really solid in the first half but was exposed quite a few times in the second, especially with his positioning. It was a game where his team needed him at his very best to shut out his opponents, alas, he didn't exactly rise to the occasion.

Sergi Roberto: 6/10

Roberto showed Nani too much respect by allowing him to run at him almost at will. The youngster could've been a lot tighter to the Portuguese winger who loves to have some space around him. It was a below par game for the visitors' right-back.

Javier Mascherano: 7/10

The Barcelona stalwart was Rodrigo's Achilles heel for most of the game. The Argentine brought his experience into play when he dealt with the tricky centre-forward who lacked the finishing punch. But he did slip up once, which allowed Valencia to get their noses in front.

Samuel Umtiti: 7/10

The French youngster has been a revelation for Barcelona this season and he proved it today with yet another commanding performance. He swept Barca's area in and around penalty box with surprising efficiency. The defender was also very diligent with his ball distribution from the back.

Lucas Digne: 5/10

The Frenchman was left reeling in the first half by Cancelo's guile and pace. He did salvage some pride in the second half but was fairly ineffective against Munir as well. His lack of pace and poor tactical positioning undid him against some smart Valencia's wide men.

Andre Gomes: 6/10

The former Mestalla talisman had a fairly rough game. He wasn't shown an inch of love by Valencia’s fans nor by his former teammates. He was too easily bullied off the ball and his offensive contribution was limited. Despite creating a couple of promising chances, he failed to impose himself on this game.

Sergi Busquets: 7/10

The Spanish midfielder was having a hard time in dealing with Mario Suarez and Daniel Parejo for most of the game. But despite this, he kept Barca's juggernaut ticking albeit with some forced interruptions.

Andres Iniesta: 6/10

The show got over even before the magician could begin his act. Iniesta was struggling to find his feet in the match and as soon as he began to tick his game, he had to leave due to an injury which will see him on the sidelines for a few months

Lionel Messi: 9/10

Cometh the hour, cometh the man! Messi rose to the occasion with a splendid performance in Valencia. Be it is creativity or his ability to draw fouls from the opposition, Valencia's defence always looked a step behind him. He didn't put a single foot wrong and was at his sparkling best.

Luis Suarez: 8/10

The Uruguayan was a bit wasteful in the first half as he squandered three clear cut chances, but he was a constant nuisance with his movement and creativity. He did score a peach of a goal from a set-piece and earned the winning penalty, but he could've ran riot if he had his shooting boots on.

Valencia CF v FC Barcelona - La Liga : News Photo
Iniesta’s injury was the negative in Barcelona’s match against Valencia

Neymar: 7/10

The Brazilian's performance today was all style but lacked substance. He was effectively negated by Cancelo in the second half, where he looked like a pale shadow of himself. The only time he looked lethal was during a one-on-one situation in the first half against Montoya. Neymar should've done a lot better against a Valencia defence which was nervy.

Substitutes

Ivan Rakitic: 7/10

The Croatian brought on a different dimension to this Barca attack with his more direct approach. He was more comfortable against the press of Perez and Suarez in comparison to Iniesta.

Denis Suarez: 6/10

It was a good cameo by the La Masia wonder kid as he bullied Los Che's burly defenders especially Mangala and Enzo Perez. He needs to work a lot more if he ever intends to nail a starting spot in this Barca XI.

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Edited by Staff Editor
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