Despite finding Wednesday’s devastating 4-0 Copa del Rey quarterfinal loss to Real Madrid difficult to accept, Barcelona coach Xavi Hernandez is adamant that it won’t tarnish Barcelona’s chances of winning the LaLiga championship.
Madrid overcame a 1-0 first-leg loss with goals from Vinicius Junior and Karim Benzema in the second half to advance to the championship against Osasuna in May.
The defeat put an end to Barca’s streak of three consecutive Clasico victories, the most recent of which enabled the Catalan team to build up a 12-point advantage at the top of the standings. The first victory came in the Spanish Super Cup final.
After witnessing his team collapse in the second half at Spotify Camp Nou, Xavi said in a press briefing that it was “difficult to digest.” “We were doing well, but after the second goal, we lost our composure; perhaps [it was due to] inexperience; we have a number of very inexperienced players. These are present in Madrid. They lead going into halftime even though they aren’t performing well.We battled well in the first half, so perhaps things would have been different if we had gained the advantage. The second half saw Madrid improve.
Before the contest, I proclaimed them to be the favourite. They currently retain the Champions League. They work well together.The athletes were informed that this is Madrid. that despite controlling play and creating opportunities, you are trailing 1-0 at the break. Football is a game of opportunities, and Madrid makes the most of theirs. It happened in the Champions League the previous year.The opening frame was our moment. They improved physically, pressuring, and during changes in the second half. They will murder you if you don’t eliminate them. Nothing else can be done but to applaud them on the outcome.
We are doing well in LaLiga and have won the Super Cup, he continued. “We must continue to compete. It will be a fantastic season if we win the Super Cup and LaLiga. This outcome shouldn’t diminish that.
“We are suffering today; it will be difficult for me to fall asleep tonight, particularly as a supporter. But starting on [Thursday], we consider Girona. We fell in the Copa semifinals, but we are now concentrating on LaLiga.
Injury kept Andreas Christensen, Frenkie de Jong, Pedri, and Ousmane Dembele out of Barcelona’s match against Real Madrid, but Xavi did not want to lament their omissions.
There are no justifications; we must fight. You get injured during a season, that’s what occurs. Although we preferred that they participate, we were able to fight well in the first half even without them.
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