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Played
May 5, 2012 3:00 PM EDT
Camp Nou — Barcelona
Referee:‬ Fernando Teixeira‎
Attendance:‬ 98772‎
 
12′ Lionel Messi
 
64′ (PG) Lionel Messi
 
74′ Lionel Messi
 
79′ (PG) Lionel Messi
 
   
 
 

Player Ratings: Barcelona 4-0 Espanyol

Goal.com rates the players on show as Lionel Messi puts on a masterclass in Pep Guardiola's last game in charge at Camp Nou.

By Martin Macdonald

  • José Pinto Colorado
    25
    1
    3.00

    José Pinto Colorado

    Further proved his credentials as a shot stopper but his performance oozed the eccentricity which has sometimes marred his Barca career. Rashly dashed from his area to try and rob Weiss of possession in the second half only to be saved by Mascherano who was covering in behind.

  • Carles Puyol
    29
    0
    3.00

    Carles Puyol

    Harassed and bullied the Espanyol attackers whenever they looked to be posing any danger. Impeccably determined as always and lead the team terrifically. Did not allow the Espanyol attackers a sniff at goal for the majority of the match.

  • Adriano
    24
    2
    3.00

    Adriano

    Contributed to the solid nature of the back four but his more impressive play came on the offensive side of the game. Was always a willing runner of the overlap and linked up well with Iniesta down the left side.

  • Montoya
    25
    0
    3.00

    Montoya

    Another solid performance at fullback. Was defensively sound but his game tonight had a more adventurous tinge to it. Showed more confidence when traveling forward and although his dribbling ability was not of Dani Alves quality, he put some good balls into the box.

  • Andrés Iniesta Luján
    41
    6
    3.50

    Andrés Iniesta Luján

    Had the freedom of the pitch in the first half to pick out incisive passes in the final third and always showed an impeccable touch when in possession. Always drifted into dangerous pockets in front of the Espanyol defense and continually looked a threat when he had the ball.

  • Thiago Alcántara
    22
    7
    3.50

    Thiago Alcántara

    His performance lacked a killer pass or dribble that would have saw him pose a much bigger threat to Espanyol but when he ventured forward into the final third he did manage to link up well when he dropped in to the hole.

  • Javier Mascherano
    41
    1
    3.50

    Javier Mascherano

    Showed a fantastic reading of the game when he dropped in behind the onrushing Pinto to terrifically clear the ball off the line with a last-ditch header over the bar. This summed up his performance as he calmly and coolly marshaled the back line.

  • Seydou Keita
    23
    6
    3.00

    Seydou Keita

    Should have done better when he burst through on goal only for a bad touch to allow Alvarez to snatch the ball from his feet. Passing from deeper areas was decent but he often found himself in a very advanced role in the center forward position, in which he struggled to keep hold of the ball.

  • Busquets
    28
    3
    3.00

    Busquets

    Had a couple of passes that went astray in the game but for the most part he controlled possession well. Showed more desire than anyone in the area which earned Barca its second penalty of the match. A reserved but effective performance.

  • Lionel Messi
    167
    7
    4.50

    Lionel Messi Top of the Match

    Settled the derby nerves at Camp Nou with a delightful free kick into the corner in the 12th minute. Lit up the match with a number of bursting runs and scored a second with a coolly taken penalty. Third goal was nothing short of genius as he showed a majestic first touch before leaving Sanchez for dead and then lashing home into the bottom corner. Sealed a fourth goal with another penalty.

  • Pedro
    20
    6
    3.00

    Pedro

    Did not fair to well when going down the right but when he cut inside his passing and movement looked to be a danger to Espanyol. However, his performance lacked a pacey dribble or dangerous shot that would have made him more of a threat to the visitors.

Substitutions

  • Cesc Fàbregas
    20
    4
    2.50

    Cesc Fàbregas

    Introduced in the second half but failed to get a foothold on the match.

  • Tello
    19
    6
    2.50

    Tello

    Showed glimpses of his dribbling skill but the match was winding down as he came on.

  • Cristian Alvarez
    3
    8
    2.50

    Cristian Alvarez

    Had no chance with Messi’s slightly deflected free kick and denied Keita with a superb diving save at the feet of the Malian. Turned an Iniesta free kick round the post with a good save and could do nothing to prevent any of the other three Barca goals.

  • Raúl Rodríguez
    3
    7
    3.00

    Raúl Rodríguez

    Put in a few decent interceptions on passes that would have saw a Barca player through on goal. Denied Thiago a tap in with a superb last-ditch challenge but his positioning was all over the place at times in the match. Was guilty of backing off the Barca attackers at times.

  • Héctor Moreno
    1
    9
    2.50

    Héctor Moreno

    Defensive line was a shambles at times as he and his team-mates did not know whether to stick or twist when it came to playing offside. Struggled to deal with the pace of the Barca attackers which left him on the back-foot during any opposition counterattacks.

  • Javier López Rodríguez
    0
    8
    2.50

    Javier López Rodríguez

    Was employed in a right wing role this evening but really struggled to gain any kind of meaningful possession during his time on the park. When he did get the ball he could not muster any kind of threat towards the Barca defence.

  • Juan Daniel Forlín
    3
    14
    2.50

    Juan Daniel Forlín Flop of the Match

    Had his hands full with an on-form Andres Inest down the left-hand side as he simply could not deal with the world-class touch and passing ability of the Spaniard. Rashly gave away the second penalty with a poorly timed challenge on Busquets.

  • Dídac Vilà
    1
    8
    2.50

    Dídac Vilà

    Done pretty well against Pedro as he did not allow the Spaniard a lot of room down the left-hand side. However, as the Barca man drifted inside he did not track his run which left someone else to step out of position to deal with the problem.

  • Raúl Baena
    1
    8
    2.50

    Raúl Baena

    Was adamant that he deserved a penalty in the second half after a tangle of legs in the area but it was a desperate plea for a spot- kick. Was determined and dogged in his pressing and closing down of the Barcelona midfielders but there was no quality in his possession.

  • Verdú
    0
    9
    2.50

    Verdú

    Came close to equalising in the first half with a free kick that went a whisker by the post but took it upon himself to much to impress against his former side. Attempted a few very difficult shots on goal when passes were the better option and did not manage to dictate play well enough.

  • Vladimir Weiss
    12
    6
    3.00

    Vladimir Weiss

    Showed some impressive dribbling skills and pace during the game and managed to cause Barcelona slight problems when he cut inside from the left and attempted to pick out passes. Just failed to have team-mates beside him to match the quality he showed tonight.

  • Víctor Sánchez Mata
    0
    8
    2.50

    Víctor Sánchez Mata

    Was never going to see too much of the ball tonight but he still did not do enough to negate the threat of the Barca midfield. Sat far too deeply which was inviting pressure and when in possession he was quickly and too easily dispossessed.

  • Álvaro
    0
    8
    2.50

    Álvaro

    Was completely anonymous throughout the match and did not affect the game through a combination of a lack of service and a lack of desire to put himself about. Did not even have scraps to feed on and cut a lonely figure as the lone striker.

Substitutions

  • Coutinho
    0
    7
    3.00

    Coutinho

    Cameo appearance in the second half.

  • Cristian Gómez
    0
    8

    Cristian Gómez

    His only contribution to the match after his introduction was a harshly given handball in the area which lead to Barca’s first penalty.

Results
 
Player Ratings
Tournament
Position
Ranking
Top Scorers
Player   Goals Penalties
Cristiano Ronaldo Cristiano Ronaldo
Striker
Real Madrid
28 6
Diego Costa Diego Costa
Striker
Atlético de Madrid
26 4
Lionel Messi Lionel Messi
Striker
Barcelona
25 6
Karim Benzema Karim Benzema
Striker
Real Madrid
17 0
Alexis Sánchez Alexis Sánchez
Striker
Barcelona
17 0