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Barcelona play "like a team in crisis"

Arsene Wenger believes Barcelona have lost their basics strengths and dynamism in attack, while also highlighting an overdependence on talisman Lionel Messi.

Barcelona play "like a team in crisis"

Former Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger issued a scathing assessment of Barcelona following their disappointing 0-0 draw with Slavia Prague on Wednesday.

The scoreless draw at home to the Czech side followed Barcelona's third defeat in LaLiga against Levante (3-1) at the weekend. While El Blaugrana still sit top of the Spanish championship, three defeats to much weaker LaLiga sides after just 11 games is far from a normal occurrence for the Spanish giants.

And Wenger stated he believes the club have lost their basics strengths and dynamism in attack, while also highlighting an overdependence on talisman Lionel Messi.

“They’re top of the league, they’re top of their group, and they play like a team in crisis," the veteran coach turned pundit told Bein Sports following the Slavia game.

"Their game is too slow. There is no dynamic in the last 30 metres, it’s too individual.

"Every time they lose the ball, it looks like they will concede a goal on the counter-attack because they cannot deal with pace against the opponent. The team lacks dynamic, lacks energy, lacks confidence."

Arsene Wenger
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Champions League disappointment having impact on Barça - Wenger

Barcelona have not reached a Champions League final since their victory over Juventus in 2015.

Last season they went crashing out at the semi-final stage after Liverpool pulled off a stunning 4-0 comeback in the second leg to win 4-3 on aggregate.

That followed their quarter final elimination in 2018 in similar circumstances, with Roma going through on away goals after the Italian side turned over a 4-1 first-leg deficit by winning 3-0 at home.

And Wenger suggested that these hugely bitter disappointments may still be impacting the psyche of Ernesto Valverde’s side.

“They have lost the charisma, and you can ask the question: how much is the failure of the last two years in the Champions League in that team?"

Valverde will hope to return to winning ways at home against Celta Vigo this weekend, where anything less than victory will put further pressure on the under-fire coach.

Amid the Wenger-labelled crisis at the Camp Nou, links with Dutch coach Ronald Koeman have intensified, with the former Blaugrana great confirming that his Holland contract has a special clause that would allow him to leave for Barcelona after Euro 2020.