Guarantees in defence
FC Barcelona became the first team to prevent Real Madrid from having a single shot on goal in game since 2010
There is no question that Barça's victory at the Santiago Bernabéu in the Copa del Rey semi-final first leg was very largely thanks to some rock solid defending. Not since 2010 had Real Madrid failed to make a single shot on target in the whole game. And that was despite the home side submitting Ter Stegen's goal to constant pressure for most of the 90 minutes.
Madrid had 13 goal attempts in total, but sic of those were off target and the other seven were blocked by the defence. Ter Stegen didn't have to make a single save! This was the third game this season in which Barça didn't receive one shot on target, in a season where they have only conceded eight goals in 23 league games.
Neither Ceuta in the Copa del Rey nor Cádiz in the league, curiously also games played away from home, managed to get a shot on target against this extraordinary blaugrana defence.
The team are course for a record since this stat has been counted. In 2019/20 and 2018/19, Barça had four games without allowing any shots, and there is still plenty of football yet to be played in 2022/23.
The 20 clean sheets that Barça have kept so far this season are already five more than the season before, and there are still 16 games left to play. A superb 54.05% of their games have ended without any goals against.
In the last three seasons, Barça conceded an average of more than one goal a game. This year the figure is down to just 0.81.
Much of this is due to Ter Stegen's excellent form, for the shots against ratio is comparable to other campaigns in the recent past, in fact being slightly higher than it was in 2020/21 and more or less the same as in 2021/22.