Barcelona’s indifferent start to the season continued on Saturday as they lost 2-1 to Sevilla in a riveting game at the Ramon Sanchez Pizjuan.
Michael Krohn-Delhi gave the hosts the lead after 52 minutes and Vicente Iborra increased the advantage six minutes later, capitalising on awful defending from the Catalans.
Neymar pulled one back for Luis Enrique’s side but, despite dominating the latter stages and hitting the woodwork three times over the course of the game, the champions could not find an equaliser and fell to a second straight away defeat.
This was Barcelona’s first La Liga match since Lionel Messi’s injury and manager Luis Enrique has to be more than a little worried about where the goals will come from over the next 7-8 weeks without Messi being in the line-up.
Barca’s attacking trio of Messi, Suarez and Neymar scored a record 122 goals as Barca won La Liga, the Spanish Cup and the Champions League last season, but they have struggled to reach that level this season even before Messi’s injury.
“Normally you can expect the highest level from our players,” Luis Enrique told a news conference.
“Coaches and teams look to create the most number of chances for the top players to score. “We are not anywhere near our best at the moment but this will change I have no doubt.
“We looked for the openings but we were not able to take advantage of them when they came.”
With the injury to Messi and Neymar’s lack of form, the decision to allow Pedro to leave the club is looking more a more a major mistake by the game. Barcelona knew that they could not replace him until at least January and have left themselves very short of options.