While Barcelona have a very tough visit at Sevilla this weekend in their attempt to keep the perfect start to the La Liga season intact, it seems most of their players are already thinking a week ahead, towards the Clasico match against Real Madrid.
It’s always dangerous thinking too much ahead, at least when you’re player, but when it’s the biggest club match in the world, it’s hard not to, even if visiting Sevilla, who are one of the two teams to beat Real Madrid and off to an undefeated starts, including two for two at home, should be Barca’s biggest test of the season till now.
For Barcelona, the start has been perfect, winning their first five matches, scoring 14 goals while conceding only 3. Still, it’s been far from perfect. Beating Real Sociedad and Granada at home through 90 minutes of struggling, and the partially lucky win over Osasuna on the road, although that is never an easy fixture.
Sergio Busquets, who seems to be getting more freedom in his role this season from Tito Vilanova, venturing forward a lot more in the different midfield trio units, knows that Barcelona have done well, but need to be much better, despite their 8 point lead over Real Madrid so early in the season.
It is important to have started like this, with full points in La Liga and the Champions League, but also it is true that we need to improve our play. We need to be more solid in defense and put ourselves in different positions. Teams are sitting back with all 11 on the edge of the area. We need to look to do things differently.
Maybe we need to reach the second halves with a more favorable result. If we do not manage that, we know that they will lie deeper and deeper and that we will leave them more space on the counter when we attack to win the game. The basic idea is to score the first goal quickly so that the opponent cannot just sit back.
From there, we will find more space. That way we will be more solid and we can link-up better in the middle of the field, which is what we like to do, and not just on the wings, which is what most teams are making us do.
Still, Busquets says he and his teammates are fully focused on the match against Sevilla.
This game is not affected because the next opponent is Madrid. Sevilla is a very difficult ground and their team are in good form. We saw that already against Madrid. With Michel they are much better, much fresher. They have clear ideas. It will be difficult to take the three points, but we will go for them.
While an 8 point lead always seems impossible to erase in the La Liga, one small slip, which seems like a thing that will happen at some point, especially with Barcelona struggling to find consistency in its defense and midfield, and the title race will open up, and the Clasico will be a lot more meaningful than it already is regardless of the clubs’ league positions.