UEFA Super Cup: FC Barcelona Beat Porto 2-0 as Guardiola and Xavi Make History
Quite unsurprisingly, FC Barcelona have won yet another trophy, with a 2-0 win over FC Porto in the European Super Cup. The Portuguese outfit played very well and made life very tough for Barcelona, but as (almost) always, the Catalans ended up prevailing and taking another trophy home.
With this trophy, Pep Guardiola and Xavi Hernandez became the most successful manager and player in FC Barcelona history. Pep Guardiola won his 12th trophy as an FC Barcelona manager (out of 15!) in just three years, while Xavi Hernandez won his 18th trophy as a Barcelona player. The way Barcelona are going right now, these two men will certainly further cement their records soon. FC Barcelona also became the most decorated club in the history of Spanish football, with 74 trophies to Real Madrid's 73.
This is truly a golden era for FC Barcelona and, despite their best efforts, Porto simply couldn't stop them from getting yet another trophy, courtesy of Lionel Messi's unparalleled brilliance.
Porto started the game very well, putting pressure on Barcelona and disrupting their flow, and the first half was pretty even, with Porto getting some chances to score. However, a suicidal mistake from Freddy Guarin made the ball land into Messi's feet and, with only Helton in front of him, the Argentine scored a superb goal to put Barcelona in front. Porto had been almost perfect, but being almost perfect isn't enough to beat this Barcelona side.
The second half was more of the same—Porto remarkably kept their high pressure and divided the game with Barcelona but failed to create clear chances. Barcelona were a bit lucky when Porto were denied a clear penalty in the 75th minute after Abidal fouled Guarin in the box, but they took control after that and scored the decisive second goal to put the game beyond any doubt.
Once again, Cesc Fabregas proved to be a fantastic impact sub (a role he'll have to play many times this season) and scored an excellent goal after Messi's sublime assist. Lionel Messi already has four goals and three assists this season, in three matches—against two of the best teams in Europe. Fans and journalists are starting to run out of superlatives to describe the best player of this generation.
It was not a vintage performance from FC Barcelona, but credit must be given to FC Porto for making the game very difficult and making Barcelona earn their win.
The most important thing is that Barcelona collected yet another trophy, further adding to their legacy as one of the finest teams the game has ever seen. And the truth is that the dream run of Pep Guardiola's Dream Team doesn't seem to be nearing an end—they will only keep adding to their legend!
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