Written by Patrick Echatah
The excruciating 2-0 loss suffered by Spanish giants Barçelona against Bundesliga giants Bayern Munich on Tuesday night must have been a familiar one for the experienced Blaugrana players.
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Barçelona coach Xavi Hernandez believed this to be the case. The Spanish tactician, who was a member of the last Barcelona team to defeat Bayern Munich in 2015, appeared visibly upset with his team at his press conference. His words appeared in Diario AS.
“We were better than Bayern in many aspects. We were better physically and we dominated the first half. We cannot let [teams] off, I am annoyed because it was a day to win.”
“The sensation is that it was very good, it was for winning, it is a lesson but it is hard, we did not score in spite of having seven very clear chances. You have to put them in.”
“I am pissed off but proud. We were equal to them, we can say that we were better but this is about winning. The first from the corner and the second from not stopping counter-attacks. You have to do it. They are a complete team, but we are at the start. We have to improve these aspects in the areas.”
The point was then made to Xavi that Barcelona had at least faced off against Bayern for the first time in a long time, as had been expressed by many. But he wasn’t content to merely compete.
“Yes, but it is not sufficient. When we speak about competing we speak about doing it at a corner or in a transition. And it is also effectivity. You get in front of the ‘keeper and you should score. The first half was excellent, we had it in their pitch, we dominated them, we won duels… we deserved to win.”
When asked specifically what lesson they should learn from their setback, Xavi described it as a “hard lesson” to learn.
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With less than 30 minutes remaining, Antoine Griezmann was added by Diego Simeone, who continues to utilize him extremely sparingly. It seems that the situation will persist because Diego Simeone and Griezmann both declined to comment.
L’Equipe reported on Tuesday morning that the two clubs were negotiating a lower price for Griezmann.
If the Frenchman plays half of the minutes he is available for over his two-year loan, Atleti will be required to pay Barcelona €40m for Griezmann, so the two clubs are negotiating a lower price. Around €25 million was the suggested purchase price.
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