Sunday, September 24, 2017

FC Barcelona leads La Liga with four-point cushion over champion

September 10, 2017 by  
Filed under International, La Liga

La Liga week 3: FC Barcelona 5-0 Espanyol Barcelona / Real Madrid 1-1 Levante

Messi scored his 38th hat-trick with the club and Barcelona most expensive signing ever Dembelé delivered his first assist to Suarez for the fifth goal as FCB went on a rout in the derby. The Blaugrana continue a perfect start in the early season. 

The reigning champion has been struggling thus far in La Liga with a hard-fought win for the opening match and two consecutive ties that led FC Barcelona with a four-point advantage in only 3 matches played. Coaches react after week 3 completed. 

FCB coach Valverde: 

“The result might suggest that it was an easy match but it wasn’t. Derbies are never easy … The most important thing is that the team is fine, the players are implicated and we’re playing the kind of football that will bring people to the stadium.

We have high hopes for Dembélé, but the idea is to introduce him gradually to the competition. The players are looking after him all the time.The season has just started and the gap on the other teams isn’t big, although it’s nicer to be ahead than to be behind.”

Real Madrid coach Zidane:

“We can’t be happy with the game, particularly with our first half performance. We improved a bit in the second but we’ve dropped two points and we’ve got to work out how to play better and pick up more points”.

We know how important it is to start strongly, and I’m frustrated that they’ve got the early goal, it’s not the first time. We have to play better but we’ve got to be patient as well and not lose our heads. I’m not concerned, games like this are all part of the season, just like last year. There will be ups and downs but the good thing is that we’ve got plenty of time to fix things. I’m disappointed with how we used the ball, the little mistakes and lack of concentration that were punished by our opponent. These things happen but we mustn’t get carried away”.

With the chances we created, we have to be more clinical. When you create opportunities like we did against Valencia or in the second half today against Levante, you have to take them. But that’s football. There are times when you’re not going to be happy and not play as well as you’d like. But we’ve got a game on Wednesday and we’ll be ready for it. We want to improve our performances and pick up points”.

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