Barcelona ratings as Samuel Umtiti scores an 8, Lionel Messi a 7 while Jeremy Mathieu did himself proud

Player ratings for both sides as Barca edged past Sporting in their Champions League clash in the Portuguese capital

Andy West
by Andy West
27th September 2017

article:27th September 2017

Barcelona overcame a stuttering display to edge out Sporting 1-0 in the Portuguese capital.

Lionel Messi and Luis Suarez both wasted excellent chances in the opening 45 minutes, but Ernesto Valverde’s side were fortunate to score a 49th-minute winner through Sebastian Coates’ own goal.


Here is our player ratings…

SPORTING

Rui Patricio 6 – Didn’t have many saves to make but was composed and reliable in everything he did.

Piccini 6 – Embarked upon some good forward runs but occasionally struggled to contain Alba.

Coates 5 – Couldn’t really have done anything about his own goal but looked error-prone with his heavy touch causing problems.

Mathieu 8 – Several timely interventions against his former club. Clearly playing with a chip on his shoulder and did himself proud.

Coentrao 5 – Made an excellent block to deny Messi but had little involvement in general play and was substituted.

Hernandes 7 – Led his team’s attacking challenge, producing some excellent constructive touches, but missed his team’s best chance.

Battaglia 6 – Positioned just in front of his back four but didn’t always protect them particularly well.

Carvalho 6 – Strong, powerful and skilful in the first half, but faded after the break.

Martins 5 – Some flashes of skill but little end product, and often forced onto the defensive by Alba.

Doumbia 5 – Made little impression before getting himself a yellow card for a dive which also saw him injure himself and depart.

Acuna 4 – Very poor. Most of Sporting’s attacking play came down the right and he barely featured.

Jeremy Mathieu competes for the ball with Messi

Jeremy Mathieu competes for the ball with Messi

SUBS

Dost 5 – Came on shortly before the break for Doumbia but was unable to significantly contribute, well contained by Pique and Umtiti.

Cesar 6 – An improvement on Acuna on the left wing but nothing particularly decisive.

Silva 6 – Replaced Coentrao at left-back and looked steady enough.

BARCELONA

Ter Stegen 7 – Only had one real save to make but it was a very good one to deny Fernandes, securing yet another clean sheet.

Semedo 7 – Solid return to Portugal for the increasingly authoritative right-back, who showed attacking intent and defended his wing well.

Pique 6 – Some shaky moments in the early stages but improved as the game went on.

Umtiti 8 – An absolute tower of strength in the heart of Barca’s defence. Nothing got past him or through him.

Alba 8 – Barca’s second-most dangerous attacking threat after Messi. Made several excellent penetrating runs and defended well against Martins.

Roberto 6 – Playing on the right of midfield in a 4-4-2, showed plenty of energy at both ends of the field.

Rakitic 5 – Subdued performance from the Croat, who played too deep to offer an attacking threat and misplaced too many passes.

Busquets 8 – Completed far more passes than any other player and kept his team’s possession game calmly ticking over.

Iniesta 7 – Some wonderful touches, and the universal respect he commands was shown by the standing ovation he received from Sporting fans as he was substituted.

Messi 7 – As always Barca’s greatest source of danger. Disappointed not to have made more of two first-half chances, but delivered a great free-kick for the winner.

Suarez 5 – Had a poor first half but improved after the break and was in the right place to contribute to the winner.

Samuel Umtiti heads clear against Sporting

Samuel Umtiti heads clear against Sporting

SUBS

Paulinho 6 – Came on for Iniesta with ten minutes remaining and helped shore up the defence as well as missing a good chance to make it 2-0.

Andre Gomes and Aleix Vidal. Brief run-out at the end.


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