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Luis Enrique praises ´effective´ Barcelona display at Las Palmas

Luis Enrique was satisfied with Barcelona’s display as they edged to a 2-1 La Liga win over Las Palmas in Gran Canaria.

Luis Suarez continued his phenomenal scoring run with a coolly taken sixth-minute opener, but Willian Jose levelled matters shortly afterwards.

Lowly Las Palmas had chances either side of Neymar’s 39th-minute winner, but Luis Enrique, who played his full complement of forwards ahead of Tuesday’s Champions League tie at Arsenal, was happy with the champions’ efforts as they moved nine points clear of Atletico Madrid at the summit.

“I don’t think there was a lack of rhythm. It was an effective performance,” he said.

“We had chances to close the game before the final 10 minutes, in which they also had opportunities.

“The interventions from [Las Palmas goalkeeper] Javi Varas were at a high level.

“In the second half we could have been more compact and had chances to win well, but they were also able to draw at the end.

“Playing every two days, the only thing we can ask is that players keep on competing.

“I am happy with what I have seen, but we can improve things.”

Luis Enrique removed Arda Turan from his midfield in favour of Ivan Rakitic at the break, but insisted it had nothing to do with the looming trip to Emirates Stadium.

“Arda subbed off at half-time? He had a yellow card, we didn’t want to take risks,” he explained.

“Arsenal will no doubt make things complicated and they have the quality to trouble us.

“It will be difficult, they all [matches in the Champions League] are.”

Sat 20 Feb, 2016
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