MADRID, 21 One. (EUROPA PRESS) –
The coach of FC Barcelona, Xavi Hernández, lamented the Cup elimination at the hands of Athletic Club (3-2) in the quarterfinals and said that he would not qualify the defeat as a failure, but if someone considers it that way, he trusts that “it will serve to learn”.
“Athletic’s intensity has surpassed us in duels, in each ball, for them it was always the last. San Mamés has this, if you don’t give your best in these situations it is very difficult. We have been gaining patience, we scored the goal, we were better by phases, but to summarize, they have beaten us by intensity”, analyzed the culé coach.
“It has been an excellent Athletic, orderly, well worked. It has cost us and in the end we found Pedri’s goal, it seemed that it was our moment but the penalty came. There are times when if it has to come up heads or tails it will always hit tails” Xavi added at a press conference.
The Blaugrana coach acknowledged that they are experiencing “difficult times”, but preferred to be optimistic. “We have no choice but to work and work. Now we have the League and the Europa League. We have to try to recover quickly because they are two hard blows, two titles lost in one week,” he said.
Asked by Ansu Fati, the Catalan coach could not advance any information. “We will see tomorrow how he is. He has been affected but we will see the diagnosis tomorrow.” “Others like Piqué, the same Pedri who has ended up melted, have ended up touched,” he snapped.
“Failure? I don’t like the word failure. If this is a failure, let it help us learn. We are going to try again, to win back the people because we have two wars left. We achieved the tie ‘in extremis’ and there we have not imposed ourselves. I want to congratulate Athletic because in many moments they have been better than us and even more so with this coach who demands a lot from you. I already said it after the draw, they were a very tough rival”, he recalled.
In relation to the penalty that gave the victory to the Basques, Xavi did not want to judge the hand. “I’m not going to value Jordi Alba’s play. I’m not going to value the referee’s work. I value mine as a coach and that of my players. Now I don’t gain anything by evaluating the play,” he said.
Finally, Xavi commented that the ‘Dembélé case’ had nothing to do with the defeat: “I don’t think it has affected this issue. He’s an important player, of course, but it hasn’t affected it. It’s a club issue, mine, of all, here we do not make unilateral decisions. We have already talked about it, “he concluded.