Robert Lewandowski is going through a quite unusual period for him. Barcelona’s super striker remained on Tuesday against Shakhtar Donetsk (1-0 defeat) is dry again and has now not scored in six games in a row. The last time this happened to Lewandowski was almost thirteen years ago.
Barcelona signed the 35-year-old Lewandowski from Bayern Munich last year and the Pole played an important role in winning the Spanish league title. He played 34 of the 38 matches (the striker missed three matches due to suspension) and became the top scorer of the competition with 23 goals. Lewandowski also helped Barcelona win the Super Copa with important goals.
However, things have been more difficult lately. Lewandowski missed three games in October due to an ankle injury, but has now returned to fitness and played in Barcelona’s last three matches. However, he did not score there. In the three games he played before he was injured, Lewandowski also failed to find his way to the goal.
For Lewandowski, such a long drought feels quite strange. His current run is his worst run since the 2010/11 season, when he failed to score in ten consecutive games for Borussia Dortmund between December 2010 and February 2011. This was in his first season in Germany. After this, Lewandowski was always a guarantee for goals.
The Catalan media therefore pays a lot of attention to Lewandowski’s dry series. SPORT notes that Barcelona performs less with the striker in the team than without. Lewandowski made his return in El Clasico as a substitute and came on with a 1-0 lead. However, Barcelona then lost 1-2. Against Real Sociedad, Lewandowski was taken off after an hour, after which Ronald Araújo became the match winner in injury time (0-1). And on Tuesday, Lewandowski played ninety minutes and Barcelona lost 1-0 to Shakhtar.
When Lewandowski was sidelined with an ankle injury, things went well, he thinks SPORT. Barcelona then fought back from a 2-0 deficit at Granada (2-2), and could have won if a seemingly valid goal from João Félix had not been disallowed, and defeated Athletic Bilbao 1-0 thanks to a dream debut from Marc Guiu . Later Shakhtar was also put aside: 2-1.
Last season, Lewandowski missed seven Barcelona games: four in the league, two in the cup tournament and one in the Champions League. Barcelona won all these seven games. It tends towards a strong example of scoreboard journalism, but the conclusion of SPORT is that Lewandowski is in any case not indispensable for Barcelona. The newspaper notes that Ferran Torres can also fill the striker position well and that Xavi has gained an interesting option with Guiu. That brings SPORT the discussion about whether Lewandowski is still the best candidate for the striker position is underway.
Alavés will come to Barcelona next Sunday. In this match, Lewandowski hopes to put an end to his dry streak and, at least for a while, put an end to this discussion.
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The post first appeared on www.vi.nl