Xavi believes Barca deserved more than one-goal win

By Sports Desk March 06, 2022

Xavi was left disappointed Barcelona's victory at Elche was not more comfortable despite an ending that prompted a heated discussion with his coaching counterpart.

Barca were forced to come from behind to prevail in Sunday's contest and stretch their unbeaten run in LaLiga to 11 matches.

Fidel gave Elche a 44th-minute lead at the end of a first half in which Frenkie De Jong saw an effort cleared off the line and another saved by Edgar Badia.

Ferran Torres' first league goal for Barca on the hour mark restored parity, but the Blaugrana needed a contentious Memphis Depay penalty to tilt the game in their favour, referee Alejandro Jose Hernandez Hernandez pointing to the spot in the 82nd minute after consultation with the VAR, adjudging Antonio Barragan had handled in the area.

Shortly after, Elche were left apoplectic as the ball struck Jordi Alba on the arm in the area, yet the referee was unmoved despite huge appeals for a penalty of their own.

Unused substitute Javier Pastore was sent off for his protestations, while Elche boss Francisco Rodriguez and striker Pere Milla were seen in an animated conversation with Xavi after the final whistle.

Asked what was happening during that exchange, Xavi replied: "Nothing, no more. Don't give it more importance. They are situations resulting from tension. 

"Better to talk about the match and the situations of the match itself. Maximum respect for Elche and Francisco. And with Pere Milla we even have friends in common."

He added: "I went into the break angry because I think we didn't deserve to lose at that moment. 

"Edgar Badia has made a great game. I was upset but I was hoping that if we attacked better, we could win the game. But I think we should have won by more than one goal."

Xavi's assessment is reflected by the statistics. Barca's expected goals (xG) tally of 4.2 was the fourth-highest for a team in a single LaLiga game this season. By contrast, Elche finished with an xG of 0.9.

The win took Barca third, placing the pressure on top-four rivals Real Betis and Atletico Madrid ahead of their meeting at the Benito Villamarin on Sunday.

Related items

  • Barcelona sign Christensen on free transfer after leaving Chelsea Barcelona sign Christensen on free transfer after leaving Chelsea

    Barcelona have announced the signing of Andreas Christensen on a free transfer from Chelsea.

    The centre-back has moved to Camp Nou after his contract with Chelsea expired at the end of June.

    Denmark international Christensen has agreed a four-year deal that includes a €500millon buy-out clause. 

    Christensen had been linked with Barca for some time after it began to look likely he would not extend his stay in west London.

    Barca president Joan Laporta confirmed on Saturday that Christensen's deal would be officially completed and announced this week.

    He becomes Barca's second signing of the transfer window, with Franck Kessie's move from Serie A champions Milan – also on a free transfer – having been confirmed earlier on Monday.

    Christensen joined Chelsea from Brondby back in 2012 and made his professional debut two years later, but it was only after a two-year loan spell with Borussia Monchengladbach that his Blues career began to take off.

    He has made 167 appearances for the club in all competitions, including 26 last season, scoring four goals in total.

    A Champions League, Europa League, Club World Cup and UEFA Super Cup winner in his Stamford Bridge career, Chelsea won 92 of the matches in which Christensen featured.

    With Christensen and Kessie on board, Barca's focus seems to be on completing a move for Leeds United winger Raphinha.

    Chelsea have reportedly agreed a fee with Leeds for the Brazil international, but Laporta insisted Raphinha has indicated he instead wishes to join Barca, who are hopeful of striking a deal despite their financial issues.

    Barca are also in talks with Ousmane Dembele over a new deal, with the France winger now a free agent, while Manchester United have an interest in Blaugrana midfielder Frenkie de Jong.

  • Barcelona complete signing of Kessie following Milan departure Barcelona complete signing of Kessie following Milan departure

    Barcelona have confirmed the signing of Franck Kessie on a free transfer following the end of his spell with Milan.

    The midfielder has agreed a four-year deal with the Blaugrana, which was made official on Monday following months of speculation.

    Kessie spent five seasons at San Siro, the first two of those on loan, and helped Milan to their first Scudetto triumph in 11 years in his final campaign with the club.

    He played in 31 of Milan's 38 Serie A matches and scored six goals from midfield, a tally only bettered by Zlatan Ibrahimovic (eight), Rafael Leao and Olivier Giroud (both 11).

    However, fresh terms could not be agreed between the Rossoneri and Kessie, meaning the Ivory Coast international became a free agent on July 1.

    Barca were always considered the strong favourites to land the 25-year-old, whose Camp Nou contract contains a €500million release clause.

     

    Kessie will compete with the likes of Sergio Busquets, Pedri, Gavi and Frenkie de Jong for a midfield spot, though the latter is expected to join Manchester United.

    In all, Kessie played 174 Serie A games for Milan since initially joining from Atalanta in June 2017, with Napoli's Piotr Zielinski (179) the only midfielder to feature more times.

  • BREAKING NEWS: Barcelona complete signing of Kessie following Milan departure BREAKING NEWS: Barcelona complete signing of Kessie following Milan departure

    Barcelona have confirmed the signing of Franck Kessie on a free transfer following the end of his spell with Milan.

    The midfielder has agreed a four-year deal with the Blaugrana, which was made official on Monday following months of speculation.

    Kessie spent five seasons at San Siro, the first two of those on loan, and helped Milan to their first Scudetto triumph in 11 years in his final campaign with the club.

© 2022 SportsMaxTV All Rights Reserved.