There are those that arrive at Camp Nou thinking that any past time was better, victims of a pathological nostalgia. Whatever happens on the pitch, the football will always be a bad copy of what it should be, of what it was. As if time moves on for everyone and everything, except for Barcelona's football, a timeless prisoner of its own dogma. Prejudice is always imposed on reality because those that are watching do so with Cryuff and Guardiola-tinted glasses with a touch of Rijkaard. The prejudice uses a filter which doesn't allow you to remember that the Dream Team also had its flaws.
Valverde's not allowed to win at Anoeta in any old way, it's demanded that he paints a work of art, the Barça-Dynamo Kyiv of the 20th century. It's as if before the historic 4-1 win, there wasn't a 3-1 loss in the first leg. It doesn't matter what happens on the pitch, the reality is what comes from our pen. The only reference is the match that has just been played in the minds of the eternally unsatisfied. Barça are just Messi and, every now and again, the revindication of Dembele. The work done by Rakitic, Sergi Roberto, Coutinho, Pique and Umtiti in the 4-0 win over PSV is rubbish. An outrage against which even Cruyff would rebel because he preferred to win 5-4 than 1-0, which implies that the opponent is playing. But today's Barca are only allowed to win by a landslide and without any concessions -- as if they are playing against no-one, as if Barça are football itself. Arrogance made into analysis.
Playing well is not a craving, it's a necessity if Barça want to win the Champions League. But that necessity and that demand is compatible with praising the play, sometimes at a really high level, that the team offered on their European debut. It's as irrefutable that Barça didn't play well at Anoeta as the fact they did against PSV. But the present says that Barça only play well if the tenant on the bench is liked by those analysing from stage. The tone of the match reports come as standard and the text appears as if it was redacted before the teams even came out. Barça will never play good football again.