Barcelona defender Marc Bartra is confident he will gain further first-team opportunities after marking his maiden La Liga start this season with a goal.
Bartra opened the scoring in Sunday’s 4-1 win over Levante at Camp Nou and has faith that coach Luis Enrique will give him a fair chance to push his claims.
“If you work hard, you get opportunities,” the 24-year-old told Barcelona’s official website.
“I just think about training, improving and giving the team everything I have.”
On his fifth senior goal in Barca colours, Bartra added: “What I like is to steal balls and do everything related to defence, but if I score a goal obviously that’s also good. The most important thing is to help the team.
“Leo [Messi] put the ball right on my chest. Passes like that make it easier.
“Scoring when the team needs you, that’s the best.”
With Barcelona 3-0 to the good after the hour, Luis Enrique handed a first-team debut to Gerard Gambau as a replacement for Sergio Busquets.
The midfielder, who has cut his teeth with Barcelona B since joining from Girona last August, was delighted to make his Camp Nou bow and cites Spain international Busquets as a major influence.
“Camp Nou is impressive. I was on the bench against Malaga and I’m very happy with my debut in La Liga,” Gambau told the club website.
“It seems impossible that in one year I’ve debuted with the first team. Most importantly, you have to take it in and keep your feet on the ground.
“Sergi Busquets is a reference for me. Whenever I’m on the bench or at home I watch him so I know what to do when I’m out there.
“In the first half Levante were back on defence, but in the second half we were able to put the game away. The team has shown that, despite the injuries, it knows how to play.
“I don’t have any goals, just to keep working hard. My spot is with [Barca B] and I just want to take advantage of my opportunities in the first team.”