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Koeman: Frenkie de Jong ‘more complete’ now than he was at Ajax

The midfielder was the match winner in the Copa del Rey

Rayo Vallecano V FC Barcelona - Copa Del Rey Photo by Irina R. Hipolito / Europa Press Sports via Getty Images

Ronald Koeman was happy with his team after seeing them come from behind to beat Rayo Vallecano in the Copa del Rey and book their place in the quarter-finals of the competition.

Goals from Lionel Messi and Frenkie de Jong were enough for victory, and Koeman was particularly happy with the Dutchman’s display.

“I know Frenkie has a lot of quality as a player to help build from the back but he has also had to give the team more offensively. We have talked about this and that he had to score more goals than just one per season. I think he is more complete than at Ajax.

“Although he tries to help with Busquets in the construction, his arrival and depth of arriving at the right time helps us more in creating and scoring goals. It is the player himself who has changed. He is playing higher and we needed a midfielder that would reach the area more.”

Koeman also offered some rare praise to Riqui Puig and Francisco Trincao. Both players started the game but came off in the second half as the coach made a triple substitution that helped turn the game.

“They played a good game. Trincao has created danger and Riqui has been good between the lines where there were a lot of people and the field was not good but he has worked a lot. The changes have been to give freshness.”

Source | Mundo Deportivo

Barca now head into Friday’s draw and join La Liga rivals such as Sevilla, Real Betis, Levante, and Villarreal who are also through.

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