After recent indifferent form, Barça delivered a well below-par performance in Vallecas where they only managed one shot on target in the 90 minutes and that came from the penalty spot, which was stopped by the Rayo keeper. Iralola's Rayo side look well drilled and were good value in securing maximum points thanks to a first half strike from Falcao, who skipped past Piqué before steering the ball home with a fine left footed effort. The move was created by Trejo who robbed Sergio Busquets in the build-up to the goal. Falcao is a big international striker playing at this modest and unfashionable club and his signing brought back memories of the likes of Hugo Sánchez, Polster or Morena who also wore the famous red diagonal striped shirt and enjoyed successful spells at the club.
Koeman's exit from Camp Nou now poses another headache for Laporta, whose level of eternal positivity is really being put to the test in his second spell as president at FC Barcelona. Despite recent comments from Laporta backing the Dutch coach, last night's defeat at Vallecas proved to be the tipping point. Sacking Koeman now means that the club now need to find a replacement for the bench as well as paying the Dutch coach compensation and that will provide another complication given the Catalan outfit's financial predicament. The club have yet to offer a settlement for former manager Quique Setién who was dismissed in 2020. That said, Koeman's position at the club really had became untenable and his sacking was confirmed on the return trip to the Catalan capital.
Not even the Real Madrid goalless draw at home to Osasuna will serve as any consolation to Koeman this morning. The side from Pamplona have been impressive on the road this season and executed a well crafted game-plan as they sat deep, were well organized and even went close to scoring them selves as they struck the woodwork and take a well earned point back to Navarra. Real Madrid tried to use the left flank as a entry-level point to the Osasuna goal with the channel being manned by Vinicius in the first half and then Marcelo in the second half. Benzema looked alert but the collective lacked the creative spark to penetrate the sea of red shirts. The draw now sees four sides tied on 21 points at the summit of the LaLiga table and a glance further down the table sees Barça languishing in 9th place.