Helsinki 0-6 Barcelona: What Luis Enrique Learned from Pre-Season Friendly
Barcelona coasted to victory on Saturday when they defeated Helsinki 6-0 in preseason play, giving manager Luis Enrique a good deal to think about. With only one game left before the season begins, it is time to start making decisions.
While several stars were missing for La Blaugrana, fans and the coaching staff got a good look at the team. It was an all-around solid performance and certainly something Enrique will be hoping to see more of.
With that being said, let us take a look at a few things Lucho learned from the big win and discuss what they could mean for the campaign ahead.
Munir El Haddadi's Potential Is Ridiculous
If you haven't heard of Munir El Haddadi yet, you will soon. The La Masia product is quickly becoming a household name at the tender age of 18 and could soon be making the jump to the first team.
It seems like every time the teenager steps on the pitch for Barcelona, great things happen. From last year’s UEFA Youth League to the recent friendly against Helsinki, Munir continues to show that his ceiling is ridiculous.
The Barcelona striker scored two fabulous goals in the Saturday friendly and looked very comfortable playing with much older teammates. At this rate, he will be in the first team very soon, and fans should be ecstatic about what the future holds.
Ivan Rakitic Is Fitting in Well
It didn’t take long for new signing Ivan Rakitic to reach full comfort in the Barcelona system. The Croatian now looks to be finding his best fit within the team, and it is paying off big time.
Against Helsinki, Rakitic’s passing ability was beautifully on display.
From a wonderful assist to Marc Bartra to constantly tearing through the midfield, the opponents had no answer to Rakitic. Lucho has already seen just what the Croatian can do, and it looks certain that he will be handed the starting position alongside Andres Iniesta.
Rakitic’s eye for making deadly passes while also providing defensive coverage makes him a very valuable asset to the new Barcelona boss.
Pedro Is Hit or Miss...but Mainly Miss
While it has definitely been an exciting summer for Barcelona, it has not been a good time for Pedro. The Spanish winger has yet to really find his footing ahead of the new campaign, and it is starting to prove worrying.
In the few friendlies he has played, Pedro has looked very lively. He is willing to run and take on defenders and is not afraid to shoot, yet it isn’t resulting in much. Pedro continues to waste chances and simply have bad luck.
When he has looked strong, Pedro still managed to miss shots that should be put away. It may just be a slump, but it is time for the winger to put it together.
Right now he has to be scratching his head. Pedro is struggling to get into games and could soon see his place in the squad fall out of his grasp. However, it is still just preseason, so he has time to find his footing again.
More Urgency, More Goals
Barcelona has received a bit of flak in their first few friendly games due to the team playing a reserved style of football that didn’t have much urgency. So far, the lack of urgency has made the Catalans suffer more than they should.
It was a completely different story on Saturday with La Blaugrana finally bringing the hunger and desire that fans have been waiting to see. The result was a goal fest and proof that the offense is coming along nicely.
The attacking players weren’t the only ones to benefit from a more urgent mindset; defenders Gerard Pique and Marc Bartra were also able to get on the scoreboard, as the Catalans constantly looked to attack.
It is clear that Lucho wants his team to play with energy and passion, and on Saturday we finally got to see what can happen when that focus is put into play.
What did Enrique learn from the friendly against Helsinki? Is Barcelona ready for the season to start? Leave your thoughts and comments below!