Ronald Koeman offered his thoughts on Barcelona’s win over Elche on Sunday and wasn’t completely happy with his team.
The Dutchman was grateful to goalkeeper Marc-Andre ter Stegen for coming up with an important save from Emiliano Rigoni when the score was only 1-0 after Oscar Mingueza had made a mess of a pass from Samuel Umtiti.
“I’m very happy with how we won. We’ve had lots of matches in the last few days and we’ve kept focus. We were better than our opponents. We were patient. We won possession. It was difficult to score because they had lots of men behind the ball. But we pressed well.
“They didn’t have chances - they only had one chance and it came from a big mistake from our defence. But Ter Stegen was very good in the one-on-one. Luckily we have a good goalkeeper, because they could’ve equalised there. Defensively, apart from that mistake, we did well.”
Yet Koeman did also praise man-of-the-match Frenkie de Jong, who scored and assisted, as well as substitute Riqui Puig who scored Barca’s second in the closing minutes with his first goal for the club.
“Riqui Puig did well when he came on. We want the midfielders getting into the box like that. I like Riqui’s attitude. Despite not getting minutes, he enjoys himself when he comes on. For me, he’s not a problem.”
Barca’s now head into an eighth straight away game on Wednesday against Rayo Vallecano in the Copa del Rey. Koeman is expected to make changes for the match to try and keep his players fresh amid a hectic schedule.