Barcelona ended 2023 on a winning note after a hard-fought 3-2 victory over Almeria at the Camp Nou on Wednesday night. The win, secured by a late brace from Sergi Roberto, was a much-needed relief for the Blaugrana, who had been struggling for form in recent weeks.
Barca started the game brightly and took the lead in the 24th minute through Raphinha, who finished coolly after being played through by Robert Lewandowski. However, Almeria equalized just before half-time through El Bilal Toure, who headed home from a corner.
The second half was a tense affair, with both teams having chances to score. Barca eventually took the lead again in the 79th minute when Roberto fired home a stunning volley from the edge of the box.
Almeria refused to give up and drew level again just three minutes later through Luis Suarez, who tapped home from close range after a mistake by Barca goalkeeper Marc-Andre ter Stegen.
However, just when it looked like the game was heading for a draw, Roberto popped up again to score the winning goal in the 87th minute. The defender met a cross from Jordi Alba with a powerful header that left Almeria goalkeeper Fernando Pacheco with no chance.
The win was a vital one for Barca, who move up to third in the La Liga table, nine points behind leaders Real Madrid. It was also a welcome return to form for Roberto, who has been in and out of the team this season.
Roberto’s performance was the biggest positive for Barca in this game. The defender has been criticized for his inconsistency in recent seasons, but he showed his quality with two goals that were crucial to the win.
His first goal was a moment of pure class, as he volleyed the ball into the top corner from outside the box. His second goal was more typical of Roberto, as he got into the box and headed home from a cross.
It was a performance that will give Roberto a much-needed confidence boost, and he will be hoping to build on it in the weeks and months to come.
The win over Almeria was a big relief for Barca, who had been under pressure after a run of poor form. They had lost their previous two games, and there were growing concerns about their ability to challenge for the La Liga title.
However, this win has shown that Barca still have the quality to compete at the top level. They were not at their best against Almeria, but they showed great character to come from behind and win the game.
The win will give Barca a much-needed boost of confidence, and they will be hoping to carry it into the new year. They have a tough run of games coming up, but if they can maintain their current form, they will be in with a good chance of winning the La Liga title.
Almeria will be disappointed with the result, but they can take heart from their performance against one of the best teams in the world. They were well in the game for long periods and could have easily won the game themselves.
However, they will be frustrated by the two late goals that they conceded. The first goal was a mistake by their goalkeeper, while the second goal was a moment of quality from Roberto.
Despite the defeat, Almeria remain in 17th place in the table, just four points above the relegation zone. They will need to pick themselves up quickly if they want to avoid relegation this season.
Overall, it was a night to remember for Barca and Roberto. The win was a much-needed boost for the Blaugrana, while Roberto’s performance was a reminder of his quality. Almeria will be disappointed with the result, but they can take heart from their performance. They will need to pick themselves up quickly if they want to avoid relegation this season.
DISCLAIMER: This team is based on the understanding, analysis, and instinct of the author. While selecting your team, consider the points mentioned and make your own decision.