Barcelona player ratings vs Antwerp: Welcome to the Joao Felix show! Portugal star shines again in easy Champions League opener

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Joao Felix Barcelona Antwerp
The Atletico Madrid loanee scored twice and assisted another as the Blaugrana saw off the Belgian champions with a 5-0 win

Barcelona got off to a winning start in their 2023-24 Champions League campaign as they swept Antwerp aside in a 5-0 victory that was inspired by the superb performance of Joao Felix. The Portugal international scored the opener and set up another in the first 45 minutes, netting with a clever pulled finish, and then laying on Robert Lewandowski's second with a sumptuous cross that gave the Pole a simple volleyed finish.

Barca's third came more by luck than judgement, as a cross sent into the box by Raphinha was inadvertently deflected into his own goal by defender Jelle Bataille. After half-time, meanwhile, Gavi added a fourth with a powerful finish into the top corner, as the Catalan giants scythed through the Antwerp defence.

Felix then scored a superb back-post header after Raphinha's cross to make it 5-0, and put the cherry on what was an absolutely sublime performance.

GOAL rates Barcelona's players from the Olympic Stadium...

  1. Goalkeeper & Defence
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    Goalkeeper & Defence

    Marc-Andre ter Stegen (6/10)

    Really didn't have much to do, bar a superb double-save in the second half, prior to the flag being lifted for an offside during the attack. A quiet night.

    Joao Cancelo (7/10):

    Was allowed to push forward and operate in the final third. Tucked into midfield at times, and was clever with his distribution, crossing well and passing slickly.

    Jules Kounde (6/10):

    Dealt with everything thrown at him comfortably and often pushed forward into the opposition's half. Even tried a 25-yard shot, although it flew over the crossbar.

    Andreas Christensen (6/10):

    Always in control in defence, and was given plenty of time to distribute. Calm and composed.

    Alejandro Balde (6/10):

    Essentially played as a left winger at times. Had a chance in the first half but hit the side netting. Perhaps one of his quietest nights in a Barcelona shirt.

  2. Midfield
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    Ilkay Gundogan (7/10):

    So elegant with his passing and slid Felix through for the opener. Metronomic with his distribution, and effective in winning the ball back too. An excellent midfield display.

    Frenkie de Jong (8/10):

    Played a beautiful pass in the build-up to Lewandowski's goal. Imperious in midfield, constantly driving forward and making things happen. Replaced by Romeu before the hour but his impact was keenly felt.

    Gavi (7/10):

    Booked needlessly for a late challenge in midfield but it was his only mistake. Scored Barcelona's fourth with a fierce finish into the top corner.

  3. Attack
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    Raphinha (8/10):

    Set up Barca's third, as he crossed the ball, and it took a nick off the defender before hitting the post and finding the back of the net. Delivered a superb cross for Felix's second, and Barca's fifth.

    Robert Lewandowski (6/10):

    Involved in the build-up for Felix's goal and scored the second with a simple finish at the back-post. Missed a late one-on-one. Strangely, Barca's least effective attacker even with his goal, but it mattered little.

    Joao Felix (10/10):

    Scored the opener, finishing superbly into the bottom corner, then teed up Lewandowski for the second. Added Barca's fifth with an excellent back-post header after Raphinha's teasing cross. A stunning display, with every touch important.

  4. Subs & Manager
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    Subs & Manager

    Oriol Romeu (6/10):

    Replaced De Jong and kept Barca ticking in midfield.

    Fermin Lopez (6/10):

    On for Gavi. Kept it simple on the ball and did little wrong after his introduction.

    Lamine Yamal (7/10)

    Replaced the sublime Felix. Had a superb chance to score, as he rounded the goalkeeper but went too wide and hit the side netting. A livewire on the ball; Barcelona have a player on their hands.

    Ferran Torres (6/10)

    On for Raphinha and almost scored with his first touch, although he was not as effective as the man he replaced.

    Sergi Roberto (6/10)

    On for Joao Cancelo and saw the game out at right-back.

    Xavi (7/10):

    This was always likely to be a comfortable win but Barcelona achieved it in style, and Xavi had the good sense to rest some first-team stars before La Liga resumes this weekend. A good night's work.