Barca stars vow to fight back

Barcelona's beleaguered stars are determined to bounce back after suffering a 2-0 defeat at AC Milan in Wednesday's Champions League clash.

Last Updated: 23/02/13 at 12:51 Post Comment

A miserable night for Barcelona who had been the Champions League favourites

A miserable night for Barcelona who had been the Champions League favourites

It was an unusual spluttering display from the runaway leaders in La Liga, thanks to a disciplined and energetic showing from the Italians at the San Siro.

The Spanish newspaper Marca, based in Madrid, said the Spanish team had "played their worst game in five years" under the headline "this is not Barca", while even the Barcelona sports daily Sport claimed "worst Barca".

Defender Gerard Pique, whose club boast a record of having reached the Champions League semi-finals for the past five seasons, said the team "maybe weren't as good as they thought they were", but added: "We are Barcelona and we have to fight back.

"We had the match under control in the first half but we didn't play well in the second. We fell apart after they scored the opener, it was out of control. We have to improve and learn from this.

"It looked as though they were coming into the match as victims but we know this club, the history they have. There are no excuses - the pitch, the referee, nothing - we have to work hard to fight back."

Team-mate and attacking midfielder Andres Iniesta was well marshalled by their Serie A opponents and is desperate his team will improve for the second leg on 12 March on their home turf.

"I don't think this game was lost because of small details, I think we lacked freshness, we didn't create chances, and they were well organised," the Spain international said.

"This is the Champions League. We have to think about the return leg and make sure it turns out differently, we have to try and attack from the first minute."

The defeat added fuel to the fire of criticism pouring out of the Spanish media over efforts by their country's four teams in the Champions League in recent days.

Real Madrid were held 1-1 by Manchester United in the Bernabeu, while Malaga and Valencia slipped to defeats against Porto and Paris Saint-Germain.

Related News

Most Commented

Readers' Comments

S

terling needs to be told though that upon entering the Arsenal squad he will re-enact the final scene from Highlander where he will be thrown around a warehouse by cartoon dragons and then be a mere mortal that will only ever spend three to four weeks a season playing football and the rest on the physio's bed. There can be only one.....player available at The Emirates.

rodger's gusset
Arsenal interest in Sterling

T

he game changed in our favour when Carrick came on. We were able to play further up the pitch due to having a player who can give and go with the ball and keep possession. Yet barkley made some runs and Townsend scored a good goal but carrick's inclusion and chiellini's withdrawal made the biggest difference to the flow of the game

ricky villa
Hodgson: Barkley was brilliant

N

o, you've not silenced anyone Andros, i'm afraid. We know you can score a great goal, and it's really handy to have your direct running and willingness to shoot on the bench. But until you can do the other things expected of a winger (beat the man, put a decent cross in, stay wide etc) then you can't expect more than a regular cameo. Wonderful goal though, what a hit! No wonder Buffon wanted the shirt.

badwolf
Townsend: I've silenced critics

Footer 365

Raheem Sterling will not resume Liverpool contract talks until the summer

Raheem Sterling has confirmed that he will not resume talks over a new contract with Liverpool until the summer.

Celtic manager Ronny Deila keen on new loan for Jason Denayer

Celtic manager Ronny Deila will try to persuade Jason Denayer and Manchester City to extend the centre-back's loan.

De Gea: United 'cannot' fail

David De Gea says that Manchester United must qualify for the Champions League next season "no matter what".

Mail Box

Is This The End Of Ex-Players As Managers?

Do massive wages and cushty TV numbers signal the end of the ex-high-profile player turned manager? Plus Liverpool fans don't actually say the 'next year' thing...

A Solution For The Premier League's 39th Game...

One morning Mailboxer solves the 39th game conundrum. Plus England were actually alright, Harry Kane is rubbish again and do Arsenal have the most embarrassing fans?

© 2015 Sky Ltd. All Rights Reserved A Sky Sports Digital Media company