WFC Recap: Fabián fuels Guadalajara rout of FC Barcelona
MIAMI — Two stunning goals by Marco Fabián helped Chivas de Guadalajara overturn a first-half deficit to hand European champions FC Barcelona a shocking 4-1 defeat in an Herbalife World Football Challenge match on Wednesday night at Sun Life Stadium in front of a record crowd for soccer in the history of the state of Florida.
Barcelona took a 1-0 first-half lead on a fourth minute goal by forward David Villa, who beat a Chivas offside trap and used a classy finish to put the Spanish champions ahead. Then Fabián put on a show in a four-minute span early in the second half to overturn the result on a long-distance stunner and a flying scissor kick. Chivas substitutes Giovani Casillas and José Luis Verduzco knocked in another two easy goals past Barça goalkeeper José Pinto to round out the result.
The game was off to an explosive start with Chivas nearly getting on the board after only 45 seconds. Forward Omar Arellano made his first of several penetrating first-half runs, beating a Barça defender and the goalkeeper only to watch as his trickling shot toward the goal line was cleared by Barcelona left back Éric Abidal.
The failed conversion by Arellano proved especially costly when FC Barcelona took the lead through Villa just three minutes later. Central defender Gerard Piqué sent a pinpoint long ball over the top of the Chivas defense in the direction of Villa, who beat the offside trap and controlled the ball in stride. The striker proceeded to sidestep the goalkeeper and slot home for the 1-0 lead.
The Mexican side had a spirited response, forcing Barcelona back-up goalkeeper Pinto into several first-half saves. First, he blocked a Fabián free kick in the sixth minute. That was followed by consecutive stops on Miguel Ponce’s blast in the 12th minute and Arellano’s follow-up poke shot on the rebound. Pinto then tipped Xavier Báez’s shot over the bar in the 16th minute before snuffing out another effort by Fabián nine minutes later.
Barcelona owned the better of the opportunities in the latter part of the opening stanza. Villa was again dangerous when he beat the offside trap in the 38th minute, only to watch his lob shot hit the backside of the crossbar.
The reserve forwards also figured with opportunities. Carlos Carmona split two defenders in the 28th minute but his shot finished inches wide of the far post, and fellow forward Isaac Cuenca barely missed the target on a piercing run just before halftime.
Those missed chances to pad their lead would come back to haunt Barcelona as Guadalajara's Fabián singlehandedly overturned the deficit beginning with a long distance strike in the 60th minute. He was left unmarked and sent a searing right-footed blast from 25 yards out into the top left corner for the equalizer.
Three minutes later, Arellano chipped a cross from the right side of the box to set up Fabián, who was unmarked yet again on the opposite post. He met the ball with a flying scissors kick to put Chivas up 2-1.
A stunned Barcelona side then watched Chivas make it 3-1 with another penetrating run down the right attacking flank, with two subs combining for a goal. Jesús Sánchez delivered the cross this time and Casillas beat Barcelona’s defenders to the ball and easily hit the back of the net.
Barcelona nearly got back into it in the 77th minute, but Chivas goalkeeper Luis Míchel stopped close range blasts from Marti Riverola and Gerard Deulofue to maintain the two-goal advantage for his team.
Chivas again showed how hungry they were for the result with a stoppage time goal to close out the rout as Verduzco reacted first to deflect a shot by Casillas into the back of the net after a corner kick gaffe by Pinto, who finished the night conceding all four goals.
FC Barcelona, currently winless in the Herbalife World Football Challenge after a 2-1 loss to Manchester United in their opening game last weekend, will wrap up their final match of the tournament with a game against another Mexican power, Club América, in a match that will be played at Cowboys Stadium in Arlington, Texas, on Saturday, Aug. 6 (4 pm ET).
The result gives Chivas de Guadalajara some redemption in the Herbalife World Football Challenge match after dropping a 3-0 result on July 20 against Real Madrid in San Diego, Calif., and losing 1-0 to Juventus in Raleigh, N.C. on July 28. They return to Mexican league action on Saturday against UNAM Pumas.
BAR – Villa (Piqué) 4’
GDL – Fabián 60’
GDL – Fabián (Arellano) 63’
GDL – Casillas (Sánchez) 72’
GDL – Veduzco (Casillas) 92’+
FC Barcelona (4-3-3, left to right): #13 Jose Manuel Pinto -- #22 Éric Abidal (61’ #26 Marc Muniesa), #24 Andreu Fontas (33’ #12 Sergio Gomez) (61’ #23 Armando Lozano), #3 Gerard Piqué (46’ #16 Sergio Busquets), #18 Jonathan dos Santos -- #15 Seydou Keita (82’ #2 Ivan Balliu), #4 Thiago Alcántara (61’ #14 Marti Riverola), #6 Xavi Hernández (capt.) (46’ #8 Andres Iniesta) -- #7 David Villa (46’ #17 Pedro Rodriguez), #27 Carlos Carmona (61’ #28 Javier Espinosa), #29 Isaac Cuenca (61’ #30 Gerard Deulofue)
Subs Not Used: #1 Victor Valdés, #25 Jordi Masip, #21 Adriano
Manager: Josep Guardiola
CD Guadalajara (4-4-2, left to right): #1 Luis Míchel — #16 Miguel Ángel Ponce (86’ #11 Julio Cesar Nava), #2 Mario de Luna (84’ #7 Jose Luís Verduzco), #4 Héctor Reynoso (70’ #3 Javier Ledesma), #6 Omar Esparza (91’ #21 Antonio Salazar) — #20 Edgar Mejía (55’ #19 Jonny Magallón), #5 Patricio Araujo (83’ #98 José Pablo Tostado), #18 Xavier Báez (55’ #104 Carlos Fierro), #8 Marco Fabián (73’ #24 Jorge Mora) — #10 Alberto Medina (70’ #95 Giovani Casillas), #9 Omar Arellano (70’ #17 Jesús Sanchez)
Subs Not Used: #23 Victor Hugo Hernández
Manager: José Luis Real
Referee: Baldomero Toledo
Assistant Referees: Brian Poeschel, Eric Proctor
Fourth Official: Chris Penso
Weather: Partly cloudy, 82 degrees