Team of the Week

La Liga Team of the Week: Perfect 10’s for Messi and Benzema

Messi and Benzema kept their sides hot on the heels of Atletico atop the La Liga table.

9:04am on Monday 22nd March 2021
Nicholas Hughes

Lionel Messi and Karim Benzema stole the show in La Liga on Matchday 28 and headline FC’s Team of the Week.

Messi (10) was sublime for Barcelona in their 6-1 romp of Real Sociedad, netting twice and supplying an assist in the game.

The Argentine completed 36 passes in the final third, the most of any player, attempted five shots on goal and touched the ball six times in Sociedad’s penalty area.

That performance came after Benzema (10) had put in an identical performance with a brace and an assist in Real Madrid’s 3-1 win over Celta Vigo.

Wearing the captain’s armband on the day, Benzema opened the scoring on 20 minutes before adding a second 10 minutes later; one strike with each foot.

Benzema was involved in everything for Real, creating two big chances in the match to go along with six shots and 10 touches in the opposition box.

Villarreal’s Gerard Moreno (8.3) lines up on the right hand side of the team after he guided the Yellow Submarine to an important 2-1 win over Cadiz.

The Spaniard converted from the penalty spot five minutes in to take his season tally to 16 goals, before assisting Carlos Bacca’s eventual winner despite a goal moments later from Alex (8.2) who also features in the Team of the Week.

Despite tasting defeat in the game, a goal, 53 passes at 96% completion and six recoveries were enough to earn him a spot on the left-hand side.

Toni Kroos (8.1) and Koke (8.3) are the double pivot in midfield. Kroos set up Benzema’s opener for Real Madrid in a game where he also made seven crosses and completed both of his attempted tackles.

Atletico’s Koke was instrumental as the league leaders held on for a 1-0 home win against Alaves. His 120 touches and 103 passes were by far the most of any player in the game while his 13 recoveries and three tackles won were also game-leading.

Sergino Dest (8.9) notched his first two Barcelona goals in the big win and earns his place at right-back, adding two dribbles and three crosses.

Barca teammate Jordi Alba (8.0) comes in at left back with a game-high two chances created, one of which resulted in an assist for Dest, and six touches in the opposition box.

Real Betis and Huesca were two of only four teams that kept a clean sheet across the weekend, and their respective centre halves Aissa Mandi (8.5) and Dimitrios Siovas (8.0) make the team as a result.

The Algerian Mandi was credited with an assist after his saved shot was tapped home by Juanmi for Betis’ second, and his eight recoveries and five clearances ensured the score would read 2-0 at full-time.

Siovas was a rock at the back for Huesca, winning the most tackles, aerial duels and total duels of anyone in the match, while remarkably his four touches in the Osasuna box were the third most of any player on the pitch in the 0-0 draw.

Jan Oblak (7.9) rounds out the team in goal after his penalty save spared Atleti’s blushes. The Slovenian plunged to his right to thwart Joselu in the 86th minute, ensuring his side remain four points clear of Barcelona at the top of La Liga.

SEASON 2020/2021 - GAMEWEEK 28

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