Barcelona’s victory over Real Sociedad at Reale Arena on Thursday was “crucial for the future of the club”, according to coach Xavi.
Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang scored the only goal of the game as Barca defeated La Real 1-0, moving up to second in LaLiga increasing their advantage over fifth-placed Real Betis to six points.
It was the Blaugrana’s only attempt on target across the entire game and they had 44.3 per cent possession – their second-lowest amount since 2005-06 – with poor finishing from Alexander Sorloth and Alexander Isak letting the visitors off the hook.
Barca are now unbeaten in their past 13 LaLiga away games, which is their best such run since April 2019.
Xavi was pleased with the fact their win came against a top-four rival, even if their performance was far from what he would have wanted.
“I am satisfied with the three points. They are vital and crucial for the future to the team and the club. It’s a golden victory,” Xavi said.
“But I’m not satisfied with the game. The first half, yes, but in the second half we suffered. We have to be honest and self-critical. We haven’t been good.
“We have to improve. This is not the way. It’s not been our ideal game. These are three crucial points against a direct rival for the Champions League.
“It’s the game in which I’ve suffered the most, along with the one against Villarreal. We noticed the fatigue.”
44.3 – #Barcelona have registered, against #RealSociedad , their second lowest possession tally in a single @LaLigaEN game (44.3%) since 2005/06 campaign, only surpassed by the 44% registered against Real Betis in March 2019. Result. pic.twitter.com/G0pgAMrfg9
— OptaJose (@OptaJose) April 21, 2022
Gerard Pique and Jordi Alba played on after appearing to sustain muscle injuries and signal for substitutions, while Ronald Araujo was withdrawn with a knee problem and Dani Alves also appeared to struggling with an issue.
“Jordi, Ronald, Pique – we are suffering a lot. There’s a lot of fatigue because the calendar is demanding,” said Xavi.
“It’s not that we don’t train well, it’s the way the game is played. And the calendar is demanding. But the effort is spectacular.
“[Pique] has been playing with discomfort for two or three months … at 35 years old, he is in shape. It’s vital.”
- Soccer News Like
- Be the first of your friends!