FC Barcelona 2-0 Cádiz: Winning start to a new era

FC Barcelona 2-0 Cádiz: Winning start to a new era

Late goals from Pedri and Ferran Torres earn a thoroughly deserved three points from the first home Liga fixture at Estadi Olímpic Lluís Companys

It was certainly a strange feeling to be playing a home fixture in somewhat unfamiliar surroundings.


FC Barcelona’s first game at their temporary home at the Estadi Olimpic attracted a crowd of 39,603, roughly 80% capacity, but with less than ten minutes to go it was looking worryingly like they were going to witness a second 0-0 draw in as many games.

But then came the goals, and all of a sudden it almost felt like being back in Spotify Camp Nou.

The game-changing moment came in the 82nd minute when the sweetest little chipped assist from Ilkay Gündogan picked out Pedri and after trying for so long and so hard in vain, the Catalans’ superiority was finally reflected on the scoreboard.

Buoyed by that goal, Barça confidently played out the remaining minutes, with substitute Ferran Torres powering through to make sure of the three points in injury time. 

Record breaker

History was made when Lamine Yamal, aged just 16 years and 38 days, became the youngest ever starter for Barça in a Liga fixture.
Belying his youth, the teenager was one of the spunkiest players on the park. He could have also become the team’s youngest ever goalscorer had he not been denied by the reflexes of Conan between the visiting sticks.

The Argentinian stopper also made a couple of astonishing saves when Jules Kounde was through on goal.

Unrewarded pressure

But although Barça were in utter command, with around 78% possession and creating almost all the big chances, they were occasionally getting caught on the break. Better Cádiz finishing could have been fatal.

In particular, Roger Martí will feel he should have scored when he was solo against the keeper. But these things are easier said than done when said keeper goes by the name of Marc Andre Ter Stegen. A fabulous block.

Barça were presenting all the right arguments to win this game, Gavi even hit the crossbar, but as it went into the final third, they were still searching for their first goal of the season.

Goals at last!

Everything changed with Pedri’s 82nd minute winner. The stadium burst to life while the Canary Islander held up a poignant message of support for his native Tenerife, which is being ravaged by devastating forest fires right now.

There was plenty more football between then and the final whistle, with substitute Ansu  Fati having a goal disallowed for offside, Cádiz doing a poor job of two alarmingly strong late chances, and Ferran Torres finally allowing the blaugrana faithful to relax with his superb run and even more exquisite finish.

So that’s the first win in Barça’s 2023/24 account. Next up is Villarreal away. That’s next Sunday but two hours earlier at 5.30pm CEST. Bring it on!

Força Barça
Força Barça

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