The fantastic match we saw at the Camp Nou yesterday ended up being more about Real Betis than any of us expected. Barça improved in the second half due to how intensely they pressed and the effort they made to defend their pride. But it wasn't the best football on show.
The match started in a back and forth fashion as both sides maintained a high press, defending as far away as possible from their own goals. For Barça the best - and only - option was Ter Stegen trying to find Luis Suarez who was dropping deeper to receive it. But yesterday Barcelona found themselves up against a magnificant version of Betis. I've never seen an opposition side control the pitch like we did from Betis.
Quique Setien's side were better in every department. They pressured higher, won the ball back, had more options when in possession and also created chances to score. Carvalho and Lo Celso were excellent. Betis managed to have six players in Barça's box when they made it 2-0.
There were some key moments. Although Barça improved the circumstances and the final result were key for Betis. They deserved to win. After it went to 1-2 following Messi's penalty, Betis immediately made it 1-3 thanks to an error by Ter Stegen. However this is a man who doesn't often make mistakes and hasn't for a long time. And after Barça pulled it back to 2-3, Ivan Rakitic was sent off and Betis soon made it 2-4. It was impossible to take anything positive from the game.
Last week Barça claimed a victory in the dying minutes against Rayo Vallecano but yesterday they couldn't match Betis. Their errors were punished and Betis walked away from the Camp Nou with all three points. And they did it by beating Barcelona at their own game.