Barca-Rayo: A frustrating outing with some silver linings?

Xavi's team looked a bit more dynamic even though the result was a frustrating draw.

Expectations weren't high among Barca fans for the Rayo fixture, given Xavi has never really beaten them in his coaching tenure. But, for most parts of this game, Barca seemed a bit more fluid and reactive. Off-the-ball movements were slightly more dynamic with players adjusting formations to attack the ball and improving basics like ball circulation - a painful feat in the past five or six games.

However, true to Barca's character this season, the team conceded a goal from nowhere (albeit a stunning 30-yard screamer from Unai Lopez) in the first half and went in at halftime trailing - a common occurrence these days with 45 minutes left to salvage a draw or a last gasp win.

While the incident was a repetition of what we have seen for the past two months, the only silver lining was that this time Rayo didn't have Barca on the ropes through counters and transitions when the goal happened. In fact, throughout the game, Rayo did not create much, (xG-0.33) compared to Barca's (1.59), but like most games Xavi's men left their goalscoring boots back in the dressing room and Barca eventually got the equaliser from an own goal scored by Florian Lejeune who turned Alejandro Balde's cross into his own net, thereby saving Barca the blushes.