An improved Barcelona wins second straight with 3-1 over Alaves

Three different players scored for Barcelona as they improved on the performance midweek against Osasuna.
Deportivo Alaves v FC Barcelona - LaLiga EA Sports
Deportivo Alaves v FC Barcelona - LaLiga EA Sports / Ion Alcoba Beitia/GettyImages

Seems like every game has been a battle for Barcelona as they continue to try to find the right formula to improve the performance on the pitch.

While it was still far from perfect, Barcelona did show some improvement in their 3-1 win over Alaves.

Robert Lewandowski opened the scoring for the visitors as he chipped the Alaves goalkeeper, Antonio Sivera. Ilkay Gundogan picked up his ninth assist of the season as he delivered a near perfect ball to Lewandowski who controlled well enough leaving him in front of goal.

Given the criticism he's been under, that goal was certainly a breath of fresh air for Lewandowski.

Despite Barcelona's advantage, it was Alaves who looked the more dangerous side in the first half. Barcelona had one chance and, to their credit, were able to make good.

The Catalan side managed to double their lead four minutes into the second half.

Lamine Yamal came away with the ball and laid it off to Pedri. The midfielder held the ball for a bit and it looked like the threat was gone. But Pedri spotted Gundogan's right to the far post and floated in a pass. Gundogan did well to stretch out his leg and connect well enough to elude the goalkeeper.

The joy lasted little to nothing for Barcelona as Alaves immediately responded. Crosses from the flanks troubled Barcelona all game and Alaves finally took advantage through Samu Omorodion. Ronald Araujo, who was on Samu like a shadow, lost track of him on the goal.

With the new found momentum, Alaves felt like Barcelona were there for the taking. The home side looked more threatening and it looked like an equalizer was on the horizon.

But Lamine Yamal, who had another good game, deked the Alaves defender and made his way close to the penalty area. He laid the ball off to Pedri who did the same to Hector Fort who guided his pass to Vitor Roque who deftly slotted the ball into the back of the net.

Up by two once more, the pressure from Alaves waned and Barcelona were comfortable again.

That was until the 72nd minute when Vitor Roque picked up a second yellow card and subsequently shown a red. On replay, it looked a harsh red as both he and the Alaves defender went for the ball. In the slide, Roque barely made contact but the referee felt it was enough to deserve the second yellow.

Despite playing a man down, Barcelona did well enough to keep Alaves at bay and snuff out any chances when they did threaten.

While nowhere near the level Barcelona can be, it was still a relatively straightforward victory. Both Lewandowski and Roque got on the score sheet and that's a positive regardless of the red card for the Brazilian.

At the very least, it was an obvious improvement from the match midweek against Osasuna.


The win was important for Barcelona who now have to ensure Champions League qualification. They have an opportunity to further cement that status and perhaps get closer to the second spot in the table. Real Madrid host Atletico Madrid in the Madrid Derby, meaning any, or both, teams dropping points would be good news for the Catalans.