Barcelona coach Tito Vilanova says he was pleased with his side’s performance in the 2-2 draw with Real Madrid at the Camp Nou on Sunday.
Two goals apiece from Lionel Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo ensured the points were shared between Spain’s two most successful clubs, meaning Barcelona remain eight points ahead of their rivals in La Liga.
Despite not being able to pick up the three points, Vilanova was impressed with the way his side approached the game.
“I am very satisfied with the performance and the way we approached the game,” Vilanova told reporters.
“With the ambition to dominate and try to deal with the game, to be offensive, knowing that they can catch you on the break.
“They are a very quick team, they have players that have that quality and they are one of the best teams at the moment.
“But with the result I think it was a game that we could have won with the chances we had.”
Vilanova also played down the hostile relationship between himself and Real counterpart Jose Mourinho, claiming the two managers now share a mutual respect.
Mourinho stole the headlines during last season’s Super Cup clash after he poked Vilanova in the eye when the Spaniard was assistant to Pepe Guardiola.
“We saw each other, we shook hands and he told me that it was a great game,” Vilanova said.
“I did the same, before I didn’t have a relationship with him and now we respect each other.
“Before when I was the second coach he didn’t really speak to me but we have a good relationship.”
Mourinho lauded Ronaldo and Messi for their efforts on Sunday.
The dual UEFA Champions League winning coach was positive about his side’s performance despite failing to close the gap on their fiercest rivals and admitted he enjoyed the match – especially the talismanic pair’s displays.
“Messi and Ronaldo are from another planet. I want my player to win, but they are both fantastic,” Mourinho said.
“As a coach, I’ve enjoyed the game. It was a great match and the result wasn’t decided until the final moment. Everyone has enjoyed the game too.”
Mourinho also reserved praise for the performance of German midfielder Mesut Oezil, telling reporters: “Oezil provided us with quality and had a great match.”