He added 10 consecutive games as a starter in the League and against Granada he sat on the bench, only an attempt to unblock in the final stages of a duel that escaped Barça. But in Mestalla, Pedri was not lacking, always quarterback of the team, as successful in the first touch as in the overflow. Although he soon saw that it would not be an easy game for him, because before the end of two minutes of the duel he deciphered an attack in a bad way, because he finished off a kind of penalty after De Jong’s pass. Then, he threw his hands to his face. It would not be the last time. Although Messi (twice) and Griezmann were already there to brighten the night, the only ones who do not see the Great Wall of China in the opponent’s goal. “We have done what we had to do, which was to win,” claimed Lenglet. “We are alive,” celebrated Schreuder, who served as the sanctioned Koeman.
Although Valencia locked themselves in the vicinity of their area to blur the interior corridors, Messi and Pedri provided solutions from the inside. Although it cost Pedri more than a cardinal. Like the one who must have freed his shin guard after Guillamón’s kick at the wrong time. Or like that one that could well come out with that kick that he received from behind inside the area after an innocent kick that the referee did not appreciate and that the VAR ignored. The canary, by then, was already shaking his head, annoyed. He did not have much time to complain because a few minutes later he received a slap from Racic that, on this occasion, the referee did sanction with the yellow card.
What hurt Pedri the most, however, was the lack of a goal because the kick that opened the duel was followed by a center from Alba that crossed the area and which he narrowly missed. Perhaps it is the only gap in the 18-year-old talent, since he has only scored three goals in the course, the last as a gift from Reyes against Athletic. “We missed the goals in the first half,” agreed Schreuder. “We lack another scorer other than Messi, a player or two who guarantee 20-25 goals per season,” they admit from the sports area, in agreement with the farewell of Luis Suárez – who has been in the league for 19 – to Atlético to lighten the salaries although annoyed because the money did not arrive to sign Depay (Lyon). Barça’s goals in the League make it clear; Leo has 28 goals, followed by Griezmann (12) and, by far, Dembélé (5) and Fati (4) appear, who was injured in November.
It happened that Valencia struck first. “I think they kick us less than before, but they all go inside,” lamented Piqué. “In the last matches, each time against ends in a goal, we pay dearly,” added Lenglet. Although Piqué added: “The team has shown character and that the League wants. The Granada thing was something unexpected and it will not happen again ”. Schreuder spoke: “We did not defend well in that match, but we must not look back but forward.” That’s what Piqué did: “We have had a very important game to continue fighting until the end. There will be no quiet matches until the end, but that means that we continue in the fight, which was the goal at the beginning of the season and more after the start of the season.
And Pedri may have wanted to score – replaced by Ilaix with 15 minutes to go – but not for a victory that keeps Barça in the fight for the title.