Player ratings as Xavi bows out with a victory


Barcelona took all three points from their final La Liga game of the season after securing a 2-1 win over Sevilla.

The fixture marked Xavi’s final game in charge of La Blaugrana after it was announced that the Spanish boss would part ways with the Catalan giants.

Barca had already guaranteed themselves a second place finish, but aimed to send departing manager Xavi off with a victory.

How the game unfolded

Barca wasted no time on the attack, as Pedri stole the ball just outside the box before driving up the left to pick out Lamine Yamal. The teenager attempted a shot on target, but it landed in front of Kike Salas, who made a crucial block.

A goal came for Xavi’s side just 10 minutes later, as Joao Cancelo tapped a perfect cross into the back post, where Robert Lewandowski was able to finish the strike and put the Catalan giants ahead.

Sevilla were quick to equalise, with Youssef En-Nesyri receiving the ball to force a clinical finish into the back of the net, beating Marc-Andre ter Stegen at the near post.

When play resumed in the second-half Barcelona looked to chase their chance to lead once again, pressing the Sevilla side and applying pressure up the pitch.

Fermin Lopez, who looked as if he’d been searching for a goal, found the back of the net after receiving a pass from Ilkay Gundogan. His powerful strike flew into the bottom corner and firmly places Barca back into the lead.

Barca continued to look dominant on the ball, claiming the most possession as Sevilla only looked to gain advantage on the counter-attack.

The visitors showed enough effort to secure a win over the hosts, and travel home having earnt a second place finish in the league.

The scoreline would also have impressed departing manager Xavi, who will hang up his hat with a final victory in La Liga.

Robert Lewandowski

Barca recorded a win over Sevilla / Fran Santiago/GettyImages

GK: Marc-Andre ter Stegen – 4/10 – Defended En-Nesyri very poorly and therefore allowed the hosts to get back in the game when Barca were ahead. Showed a lack of spatial awareness between the sticks.

RB: Jules Kounde – 5/10 – Tried to find his rhythm as a fullback and played a very high line. Did make a few mistakes, mainly when trying to keep the ball.

CB: Pau Cubarsi – 6/10 – Improvements can be made in his game, but for such a young player Cubarsi offers so much for the Barca side. His defence was admirable against Sevilla’s attack, and in some cases better than his teammates.

CB: Inigo Martinez – 5/10 – Made a few costly mistakes, especially when trying to stop En-Nesyri from scoring early on. Struggled to break down Sevilla’s attack.

LB: Joao Cancelo – 7/10 – Cancelo provided a tactical assist for Lewandowski to score and looked incredibly efficient on the left. It certainly looked as if he wanted to impress any potential suitors in the summer.

CM: Pedri – 7/10 – Provided a fantastic backheel flick to set up Lewandowski’s opening goal and came close to earning his own flowers on multiple occasions.

CM: Andreas Christensen – 6/10 – A very good defensive performance came from Christensen, before he was subbed off at the break.

CM: Ilkay Gundogan – 5/10 – The midfielder was kept very quiet throughout the first half, but was later able to provide an assist for Lopez’s goal.

RW: Lamine Yamal – 6/10 – Once again a mature performance came from the youngster. He was caught out a little bit by being so left footed, but still looked like a handful on the pitch.

ST: Robert Lewandowski – 8/10 – Offered a sublime finish to put Barca ahead in the opening moments of the game and continued to look like a leader throughout the fixture.

LW: Fermin Lopez – 8/10 – Gave Barcelona the lead as the hour mark approached and provided a tactical masterclass on the pitch throughout the game.

Substitutes

SUB: Oriol Romeu (46′ for Christensen) – 6/10

SUB: Ferran Torres (62′ for Lewandowski) – 5/10

SUB: Joao Felix (62′ Yamal) – 5/10

SUB: Vitor Roque (75′ for Lopez) – 6/10

SUB: Hector Fort (84′ for Cancelo) – N/A

Subs not used: Diego Kochen, Inaki Pena, Ronald Araujo, Sergi Roberto, Raphinha.

Manager

Xavi – 8/10 – Ended his final La Liga match in style with a win over Sevilla. Started a strong squad and made useful substitutions.

Player of the match – Fermin Lopez (Barcelona)

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