A look into how Victor Moses performed against Barcelona at Nou Camp.
Victor Moses has had a very inconsistent season with Chelsea, dominating the right wing, defending tightly and turning up in attack with verve in one game to looking lost in another.
This was the same story in the Chelsea’s two-legged Champions League round-of-16 tie against Barcelona.
In the first leg at Stamford Bridge, he turned up one of his best performances of the season but in the second leg on Wednesday, he was inspiring and played without conviction.
Slow in defence, poor in attack
Moses started in his usual right wing-back position in Antonio Conte’s trademark 3-4-2-1 formation. Chelsea were all on the back-foot from the first minute and Moses had not even had a touch when Lionel Messi opening the scoring for Barcelona in the third minute.
Chelsea responded well, attacking Barcelona with a lot more purpose and in the eighth minute, Moses was played into the opposition 18-yard-box but his cross could not find a teammate.
A few minutes later, he showed good footwork to beat three Barcelona player, sprinted towards goal and attempted a one-two with to Olivier Giroud but he was fouled as he continued his run.
With Chelsea asking some questions of Barcelona, Barcelona scored a second from a counterattack. With Moses overlapping, Moses pounced on a loosed ball, beat Andreas Christensen and after unsettling César Azpilicueta, passing to an onrushing Ousmane Dembele who finished past Thibaut Courtois to put Barcelona 2-0 up.
Chelsea piled up the pressure on Barcelona in search of a goal to get them back in the game but Moses was found offside while attempting to go for a pass in the 25th minute.
In the 34th minute, another of Moses attempted forward ended after his pass to a teammate was intercepted in the Barcelona box.
In the second half, it got worse for the Nigerian forward in an extremely frustrating night for both him and Chelsea.
Just before he was substituted, Chelsea conceded the third goal. Moses was standing in the Chelsea area when an un-rushing Messi took the ball from Luis Suarez and with quick feet found space and finished past Courtois with Moses attempting a late sliding tackle.
His disappointing night ended in the 67th minute when he was substituted for Davide Zappacosta. Moses offered nothing for Chelsea against Barcelona. Defensively, he was off the pace and couldn’t cope with the intelligence of Andres Iniesta and the quickness of Messi.
Offensively, he offered nothing for Chelsea. There was a lack of conviction in his play going forward and missed several opportunities to put in a good pass or cross into the Barcelona box.
It was a very disappointing night for Moses and Chelsea who will now have to turn their attention to the FA Cup for any hope of a trophy this season and the Premier League where they will be looking to finish in top four to qualify for next season’s Champions League.
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