Modern Football's Holy Grail: How to Beat FC Barcelona

Nithyanand KrishnamaniContributor IIIJune 13, 2011

LONDON, ENGLAND - MAY 27:  In this UEFA handout image Coach Josep Guardiola speaks during the FC Barcelona press conference ahead of the UEFA Champions League Final against Manchester United at Wembley Stadium on May 27, 2011 in London, England.  (Photo by UEFA/Handout via Getty Images)
Handout/Getty Images

This seems to be the question on every non-Barcelona fan’s mind.

Barcelona is definitely one of the greatest teams in the history of soccer, but there are ways to beat them. Every team can use certain tactics to beat Barcelona. It is really difficult to beat Barcelona at their own game but; there are other ways to beat them.

So, let’s see how to beat them.


Attacking the defense:

The focus of every team must be to attack Barcelona’s full backs.

Dani Alves and Eric Abidal are known to go forward at every given opportunity. Although this approach is a bit tough to execute, with proper personnel and preparation, it can be achieved.

Speed is the key here.

It is vital to counterattack at a really fast speed. Xavi and Andres Iniesta are not the kind of players to run 60-70 yards and save a goal. Playing with a speedy striker will also help.


Focus on the playmaker and shooting:

If you saw Barcelona’s defeat at home to Rubin Kazan, you would have noticed the influence Alejandro Dominguez was having on the match.

He was the playmaker of the team, linking everything between midfield and defense. He was taking on Yaya Toure, which created space for other players to exploit. Another thing to note was the way Rubin were shooting from any range.

The first goal for Rubin was a stupendous goal from way out. This really set the tone for the rest of the match. Each time Barcelona pressed forward, Rubin got the ball back and tried to shoot from distance.

This proved to be the basis on which they beat Barcelona.


Utilizing space:

Space has become one of the most important factors in football today.

One of the main reasons why Barcelona succeeds is because, they exploit the space provided. Messi weaves his way through defenses because; relentless passing by his team-mates opens up spaces for him.

It is quite difficult to pin back Barcelona in their own half. The focus for teams when playing Barcelona should be on; inviting Barcelona to attack but making sure that their forwards are marked.

Then the wingers can race at Barcelona’s defense and create an opportunity.


Please remember that these methods are not foolproof. Sometimes they may work and sometimes they may not. Arguably, the weakest link in Barcelona is the space BETWEEN the midfield and defense.

If teams focus on this space it would be much easier to beat Barcelona.

Your thoughts are welcome. Let’s get the debate started.