Lionel Messi, Arturo Vidal Lead Barcelona Past Getafe in 2-0 La Liga Win

Gianni Verschueren@ReverschPassFeatured ColumnistMay 12, 2019

Barcelona's Chilean midfielder Arturo Vidal celebrates with Barcelona's Argentinian forward Lionel Messi (L) after scoring a goal during the Spanish League football match between Barcelona and Getafe at the Camp Nou Stadium in Barcelona on May 12, 2019. (Photo by Josep LAGO / AFP)        (Photo credit should read JOSEP LAGO/AFP/Getty Images)
JOSEP LAGO/Getty Images

Barcelona bagged another win in La Liga on Sunday and struck a cruel blow to Getafe's bid for a top-four finish in the process. Arturo Vidal opened the scoring, and Lionel Messi forced an own goal in the 2-0 win.

The Blaugrana were far from their best and didn't create many chances, but Vidal was on point to power home a rebound after 39 minutes. Getafe had enjoyed the better chances up until that point, but didn't threaten Jasper Cillessen much after the break.  

Messi had several good looks on goal and did enough to force Djene Dakonam into an own goal with minutes to spare.

The Catalans have already secured the title, while Getafe are fighting for a UEFA Champions League ticket in what has been an unbelievable Cinderella story. Sunday's loss and Valencia's win over Deportivo Alaves means they now have to better Los Che's result on the final matchday, however, as they're tied on points and Valencia have the tiebreaker.

   

Coutinho Is Finished at Barca

Barcelona fans sent out several strong messages on Sunday, and most of them were not of the positive kind.

For starters, the club's faithful didn't show up in numbers for this contest:

They also jeered the side as they came on the pitch, reserving the loudest boos for two men: Ernesto Valverde and Philippe Coutinho.

Sports writer Samuel Marsden noted the jeers for the Brazilian started as soon as he touched the ball:

Coutinho didn't have a bad outing, creating a handful of chances, but he wasn't a standout, either. There was nothing he could do to stop the noises from the supporters, and his outing came to a premature end when he picked up a knock in the second half.

Little has gone right for Coutinho since moving to the Camp Nou in 2018, and according to AS (h/t Football Espana), he's one of the players Barcelona are hoping to move this summer. Per the Guardian (h/t Marca), selling him now would be preferred, before he has the chance to trigger an appearance-clause that would require the club to pay Liverpool an additional €25 million.

It's time for the Catalans to cut their losses. The 26-year-old has not been a good fit for the club's style of play, and he has fallen behind Ousmane Dembele in the pecking order. The France international missed Sunday's contest, but when available, he has proved a far more effective partner for Messi.

The Blaugrana won't recoup the €120 million they have already spent, per Marca, but Coutinho's success at Liverpool and with the Brazilian national team will ensure someone takes a chance on him. A fresh start might see the return of the old playmaker, and perhaps Barcelona can add performance-related clauses into the sale to incentivise clubs.

But the fans at the camp Nou have soured on Coutinho, and that has had an impact on the squad. Messi spoke out after the fans jeered him in the 3-0 win over Liverpool, per Jordan Seward of MailOnline, and the forward doesn't need those kinds of distractions.

It's better to remove such distractions altogether and call an end to Coutinho's time at the club.

    

What's Next?

La Liga wraps up on Saturday, when Barcelona visit Eibar and Getafe host Villarreal.

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