Liga: FC Barcelona 1-2 Valencia

Messi scored his 500th career goal and 450 for FC Barcelona as he continues to make an inedible impact on the game.

But Barcelona seems to have all the difficulties lately with a second straight win in the week and a third straight in la Liga. The title race is now closer than ever with Atletico de Madrid tied for first place with 76 points and Real Madrid just point behind.

Coach Barcelona, Luis Enrique comments on the defeat and stays positive:

“These are games that are very difficult to play and the team came up with a magnificent response,” he said after FC Barcelona came up just short in a 2–1 defeat to Valencia on Sunday night. “We played a very complete first half, but we were unlucky and we needed it to win the game.”

The untrained eye could see that luck — or a lack thereof — was a major factor once again, invisible yet all too present. Luis Enrique, nonetheless, knows he has no control over it.

“I remain positive about our level of play, we were very superior, but not so effective. We had very good stretches in the second half but it wasn’t to be.”

Sometimes that’s what happens at football. You have to know how to lose. Now we have an incredible challenge in front of us. If we win the five remaining games we will be the champions. I’ve never seen Camp Nou so behind the team in the situation that we are in.

I congratulate my players for the way they have handled the adversity. We just have to get back up. We depend on ourselves. We know how big of a challenge it is. Today I think it was a difficult situation, but we knew we had to play a very good game, and we dominated all facets of play. This is the path forward. We can’t win every single game by playing anyway we want, we have to have order and we have to be organized. Today there’s not a single Barça supporters who is not proud of the team.

“If there’s one team that’s capable of picking itself up it’s this Barça. Today is not a day to criticize my players, but to praise them. The players have taught everyone a lesson about how to approach a game like this. We were trying to tie the game until the 93rd minute. It would have been very unfair to take out any of the players. They were playing very good game.”

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