Alba: Real defeat helps Barca

Barcelona defender Jordi Alba believes their Copa del Rey semi-final exit at the hands of Real Madrid will make them stronger for their upcoming crunch UEFA Champions League clash with AC Milan.

Last Updated: 27/02/13 at 12:05 Post Comment

Jordi Alba: In a positive frame of mind for AC Milan clash

Jordi Alba: In a positive frame of mind for AC Milan clash

Barca's hopes of trophy treble in the final months of the season were shattered on Tuesday night as they lost 3-1 at home to arch-rivals Madrid in the second leg of their Spanish cup clash, going out 4-2 on aggregate.

That was a major blow for the Catalan giants and, while the Primera Division title looks almost certain to end up at the Nou Camp this season, their Champions League hopes also look in serious jeopardy as well.

Second-half goals from Kevin-Prince Boateng and Sulley Muntari earned Milan a 2-0 lead in the first leg of their last-16 tie against Barca last week, and the Italian outfit will hope to finish off their opponents in Spain on March 12.

However, Alba, who scored a late consolation for Barca last night, says his side's cup exit will provide them with added motivation for their European clash.

"We've given our all and it wasn't to be, this defeat will make us stronger for the Champions League," Alba said.

"These are two key games which we've lost but there's still the return leg against Milan to come which I'm sure will go better.

"If we score an early goal we will have a good chance of getting through, I have a lot of hope.

"The team have shown they can win any tie."

Barca fans would have felt their side had done the hard work in the semi-final after drawing 1-1 in the first leg at the Bernabeu, but Cristiano Ronaldo's 13th-minute penalty last night quickly wiped out their away goal.

Ronaldo then doubled his account for the match in the 57th minute before Raphael Varane made it 3-0 11 minutes later.

That left Barca needing to score four times in the final 20 minutes to go through, and all they could manage was Alba's 89th-minute effort.

The Spain international said: "We're very annoyed, we wanted to get through to the final but the penalty and the second goal caused us a lot of damage.

"We started very well, we've had chances but the penalty really hurt us."

Dani Alves hopes his side can learn from the defeat, with Barca facing Madrid again in the league this weekend at the Bernabeu.

"We didn't compete well, we traded blows and that's not our style, we need to learn from this," he said on his club's website.

"There's no room for error if you don't compete well at this level. They are fast up front and they closed themselves off well at the back.

"The fans know that we tried and they acknowledged our effort, but sadly at this level you can't give away chances."

Midfielder Cesc Fabregas echoed those comments, adding: "We have to give more, we have to pick ourselves up, move forward and win on Saturday.

"We have to learn from this...the two most important titles are coming up and we have to move forward."

Related News

Most Commented

Readers' Comments

I

d like to add players who push their team-mates out of the way to celebrate on their own

exhausted
The Ten Most Hated Things In Football

I

f I were Manuel Pellegrini I would keep quiet and hope the Board didn't notice City not winning anything. If he isn't sacked I'd be astonished.

lfcfan80
Pellegrini: I won't be sacked

S

till I suppose it still gives him at least another year in the job. By the time it comes around , he can always make up another excuse. First it was 3 months , then a year .....Next year ? Whats his excuse with Van Persie ?

spud1
Di Maria 'could peak next year'

Footer 365

Neville 'concerned' over Reds form

Gary Neville has admitted that he is "concerned" that a resurgent Liverpool could qualify for the Champions League ahead of Manchester United.

Boro claim top spot as Derby lose

Middlesbrough became the new Championship leaders as they took advantage of Derby's latest slip by beating Millwall 3-0.

Aston Villa 2-1 West Brom: Benteke's late show helps end Villa's long wait for a win

Tim Sherwood recorded his first win as Aston Villa boss as Christian Benteke's late penalty helped beat West Brom 2-1.

Mail Box

Look Away Now Please, Sherwood...

Sherwood's cringeworthiness, Matic's Wembley celebrations, why LVG must show balls - it's all here in your Wednesday afternoon Mailbox...

United's No 2 Isn't That Bad Either...

One mailboxer is getting in a flap about the claim Man Utd would struggle without De Dea, while there's some anger directed at Chelsea...

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