Tactical Analysis: FC Barcelona vs Sevilla FC

By Luismi Loro

06-October-2020 on Users

7 minute read

Ex-pro footballer and tactical analyst, Luismi Loro, uses Nacsport and KlipDraw to analyse this great match between Barcelona and Sevilla. Currently working as a professional analyst, last season Luisma was part of the technical team at Villareal, working as an assistant to coach Javi Calleja.

Koeman vs Lopetegui


This was a highly tactical match between two highly tactical teams. There was a lot of back-and-forth throughout the game with small, fascinating battles in each part of the pitch. Stats for the game show that both sides were fairly evenly matched, a fact reflected in the final score.


Sevilla pressured well throughout the game, pushing extremely high and causing Barcelona problems when trying to build from the back, leaving Neto, Arujo and Pique somewhat off balance.


This forced Barcelona to play a longer, deeper game than normal, a situation in which Sevilla seemed to come out on top, with Carlos and Koundé sweeping up comfortably at the back. After winning the ball, Sevilla controlled the game well, making it difficult for Barcelona to steal back the offense. Overall, the Andalusian team probably had the best of the ball.


Barcelona vs Sevilla - 1


Midfield Superiority


The mobility of Sevilla  generated superiority in midfield with Rakitic, Jordan and Fernando linking up well with Acuña and Navas on the wings to alleviate the high pressure that Barcelona were trying to apply.


Barcelona vs Sevilla - 3


Barcelona vs Sevilla - 4


Barcelona tried to even up the midfield by pairing Coutinho, Busquets and de Jong with Rakitic, Fernando and Jordan. Barcelona continued having problems in getting control of the game up front, especially when Fati and Griezmann were pulled inside in order to link up with Messi. This left the wings open for Sevilla to exploit and provided an easy route out of defense.


Barcelona vs Sevilla - 5


Barcelona vs Sevilla - 6


Few Opportunities for Dominance


Sevilla exploited the channels left open by Fati and Griezmann with Jordi Alba and Sergi Roberto generally arriving too late to plug the gaps.


On occasions, Barcelona did manage to steal play in their opponents half, but these opportunities came few and far between.


Barcelona tried to compensate by pushing Coutinho further up the field to support Messi out front, meaning the wingers could stay out wide. In reality, this gave Sevilla a 3-vs-2 superiority in central midfield, giving them more space to play with.


Barcelona vs Sevilla - 7


Sevilla’s best moment came with the set piece that led to their goal. Aruajo failed to effectively clear a cross, leaving the ball to run loose to de Jong who thumped it into the back of the net.


Sevilla now knew how to attack their opponents, by keeping possession and changing formations to look for 2-on-1 situations around the park such as Suso and Navas against Alba out wide and the same at the other side. 


Barcelona vs Sevilla - 8


A Double Edged Sword


Barcelona had periods of domination but did not dominate the entire game, finding it difficult to generate scoring opportunities. The mobility of the 4 front players was a double-edged sword, allowing them to change position at will but leaving them disorganised and all at sea when the ball was lost. They simply couldn’t get the ball deep enough to create attacks and Sevilla seemed more than comfortable controlling the game in the mid / low area of the field in a 4-5-1 formation.


Barcelona vs Sevilla - 9


Messi Creating Space


Messi, playing as a false 9, attracted the central defenders, freeing up space behind them that he tried to exploit. Space that was hard to come by since Sevilla played so tight and it was this very space that Coutinho took advantage of to even the game up after 10 minutes and which Barcelona would spend the rest of the match attacking, creating several opportunities to take the lead through Griezmann and Trincao.


Barcelona vs Sevilla - 10


Barcelona vs Sevilla - 11


Barca still displayed a lack of organisation in their midfield game, causing a general lack of fluidity and continuity. On the other hand, Sevilla continued to successfully alternate high pressure and defensive organisation.


Barcelona vs Sevilla - 12


Substitutions did not change the course of the match or the scoreboard. Trincao came on to give a lift and verticality to Barcelona’s game whilst En-Nesiry gave the Andalusian team greater depth. Despite this, deadlock remained, each team struggling to make the breakthrough, Barcelona trying to disrupt the plans of Lopetegui’s men and Sevilla producing some dangerous counter attacks. 




At the final whistle, Sevilla were proven to be a solid and compact team whilst Barcelona continued to grow. One point each feels like a fair result with Lopetgui’s team perhaps edging the tactical battle between the two.


At the end of the day, we, the spectators, are the winners as we got to witness the tactical battle and technical expertise of these two great teams.


This analysis was created using Nacsport video analysis software. If you would like to try a free, no obligation Nacsport trial, click the link below.


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