FC Barcelona coach Ernesto Valverde on Friday stressed that his team needs to remember the sting of defeats they experienced in their 1-2 away loss to CD Leganes in La Liga play over a month ago and the lessons they have learned. Also Read - Lionel Messi Scores 700th Goal But Barcelona's La Liga Title Hopes Fade Away After Atletico Draw
Although Brazil midfielder Philippe Coutinho got Barcelona on the scoreboard early against Leganes in the match that was held at Butarque stadium on September 26, the hosts managed to bounce back to a 2-1 win over the Catalan giant thanks to the goals scored by Morocco forward Nabil El Zhar and Spanish midfielder Oscar Rodriguez, reports Efe. Also Read - La Liga: Barcelona Title Hopes Take a Hit After 2-2 Draw With Celta Vigo
“The defeat against Leganés will be a reference point. Those games are for learning from,” Valverde said in a press conference on the eve of Saturday’s league duel at Rayo Vallecano’s home stadium Campo de Fútbol de Vallecas, stressing: “We don’t want to commit the same mistake.” Also Read - Happy Birthday, Lionel Messi: 10 Interesting Facts You Should Know About the Football Icon
He explained: “Rayo are an attacking outfit and they have skillful players in midfield and up front. Most of the games they have played so far have been tight.”
Valverde also discussed the health of his superstar Lionel Messi who is still in the recovery process after fracturing his right forearm during his side’s 4-2 La Liga win over Sevilla, saying that the Argentina forward did not get the medical green light yet despite training with the rest of the team recently.
“The most normal thing would be that he comes back gradually to training to stay fit but we have to wait as it has only been two weeks and it is still early,” Valverde said.
(With IANS Inputs)