Ronaldo Koeman has warned that “this is not the Barcelona of eight years ago” after being criticized for the club’s style of play.
Center-back Ronald Araujo was playing as a makeshift striker when he scored a last-minute equalizer to save a 1-1 home draw against Granada on Monday night.
His defensive partner Gerard Pique had also been launched on offense for the last 20 minutes as they desperately searched for a goal.
Barcelona have made 54 crosses in total, their second highest total in a single La Liga game since at least 2005/06.
We tried to win differently. We don’t have one-on-one or speedy players.
“We’ve changed our style a bit,” Koeman said after the result, leaving them in seventh place with eight points, five behind leaders Real Madrid who played one more game.
“If you see the list of players, what do you do?” Play tiki-taka? Tiki-taka when there is no space?
“We did what we had to do. We tried to win in another way. We don’t have one-on-one or speedy players. We’re talkingâ¦ I’m not going to say more. because it seems like I have to argue over everything. “
Barcelona have long been associated with the style of football introduced by Johan Cruyff and developed by Pep Guardiola.
Koeman added: “We know it may not be Barcelona football, but this Barcelona is not what it was eight years ago.”
âBut what is Barcelona? “
Only 27,000 supporters were at Camp Nou for the game despite the availability of 40,000 tickets and many who remained full-time whistled Barcelona players as they walked away.
Koeman’s Barcelona were exhausted from injuries with Jordi Alba, Pedri, Ansu Fati, Martin Braithwaite, Ousmane Dembele and Sergio Aguero.
The summer outings of Lionel Messi, Antoine Griezmann, Emerson Royal and Miralem Pjanic followed a summer in which the Barcelona president admitted the club were in a “very worrying” financial situation.
But the Spanish press remained critical after the draw with Granada, with Marca headlining his newspaper: âBut what is Barcelona?
Catalan newspaper Diario Sport blamed a “lack of resources” while Madrid-based Diario AS called Koeman’s side “lackluster”.
Barcelona are reportedly considering options to replace Koeman as head coach, with Belgium boss Roberto Martinez and former midfielder Xavi linked to the post.
Asked about the growing pressure on his job, Koeman said, “I’m not going to talk about my future anymore.”