LaLiga matches to hold minute's silence in memory of Luis Enrique's daughter

By Sports Desk August 30, 2019

All LaLiga matches this weekend will hold a minute's silence in memory of Xana, the daughter of Luis Enrique.

The former Barcelona boss confirmed on Thursday that his daughter had died at the age of nine after a five-month battle with bone cancer.

Clubs and players from Spain and beyond offered their condolences to Luis Enrique and his family, with Barca holding their own moment of silence before training on Friday.

LaLiga has now confirmed there will be tributes prior to every match in the top two divisions this weekend in a show of support for the former Spain head coach.

"A minute of silence will be held ahead of all LaLigaSantander and LaLigaSmartBank matches this weekend in memory of Xana, daughter of Luis Enrique," a statement issued on Twitter said.

Spain postponed a news conference, which had been scheduled to take place after their latest international squad was announced, as a sign of "love and respect" for the grieving family.

Barca boss Ernesto Valverde told reporters: "It's difficult to find adequate words to comfort people going through something so tough.

"But I want to offer all of our affection and support for him, for his family, from everyone who is part of Barca and to send him a huge hug."

Related items

  • Messi continues to get better – Valverde hails record-breaking Barca star Messi continues to get better – Valverde hails record-breaking Barca star

    Lionel Messi gets better with each passing day as head coach Ernesto Valverde heaped praise on Barcelona's record-breaking superstar following Wednesday's Champions League victory.

    Messi set a new Champions League record with his goalscoring display in Barca's unconvincing 2-1 victory away to Slavia Prague in Group F midweek.

    The Barca captain's third-minute goal saw him become the first player to score in the Champions League for 15 consecutive seasons, while he also matched Cristiano Ronaldo and Real Madrid great Raul in having netted against 33 different opponents in Europe's premier club competition.

    Valverde hailed Messi post-match, telling reporters: "He's the player who can decide any game. Every day we see him he's even better.

    "One more record for the incredible Leo. They are easy to say, it seems natural, but it is very difficult to achieve."

    After Messi's opener, Slavia managed to restore parity via Jan Boril five minutes into the second half but a huge slice of luck benefited Barca, who saw Peter Olayinka deflected in Luis Suarez's effort.

    The win saw Barca improve to seven points from three games, three points ahead of Inter and Borussia Dortmund.

    On Messi, Barca midfielder Sergio Busquets added: "He's had a tough start to the season because of injuries. He's fundamental to the way we play and a lot goes through him.

    "He's getting his rhythm back but it won't take him long because he's the best in the world." 

  • They were like wolves – Valverde hails Slavia Prague but urges Barcelona to take control They were like wolves – Valverde hails Slavia Prague but urges Barcelona to take control

    Ernesto Valverde has praised the display of Slavia Prague after his Barcelona side came away with a fortuitous 2-1 win in the Champions League.

    Barca were well below par in Wednesday's Group F encounter, but clinched the points thanks to Peter Olayinka's own goal.

    Lionel Messi had put Barca ahead early on, but Slavia deservedly fought back through Jan Boril's equaliser before Olayinka deflected in Luis Suarez's effort.

    The visitors had to survive a late onslaught in order to move three points clear at the top of Group F and Valverde acknowledged his side must learn to manage games in a more orderly fashion.

    "That was exactly the Slavia performance we expected," Valverde told a news conference.

    "These games, we have to know how to play them. We have lacked peace of mind. We had clearer chances than they did, but their pushing could hurt us. They were like wolves.

    "When we lost the ball they threw people forward and by the end they took so many risks it was like defending against an avalanche of attacks."

    Barca goalkeeper Marc-Andre ter Stegen made a string of stops to keep Slavia down to one goal, but the Germany international insisted Barca must improve tactically.

    "We didn't play at the level we need to be at," Ter Stegen told reporters. "Luckily we got all three points, which is the most important thing.

    "There are things we must improve but we'll talk about them within the training ground, not here.

    "This is a tactical thing. These are things that happen during a game.

    "On a personal level I always want to be there and if I can help the team, that's better."

  • Slavia Prague 1-2 Barcelona: Messi sets Champions League record in fortuitous Blaugrana win Slavia Prague 1-2 Barcelona: Messi sets Champions League record in fortuitous Blaugrana win

    Lionel Messi set a new Champions League record as Barcelona laboured to a fortunate 2-1 victory over Slavia Prague in Group F.

    Messi's third-minute goal saw him become the first player to score in the Champions League in 15 consecutive seasons, but it did not pave the way for a convincing performance from Ernesto Valverde's side.

    Indeed, Barca relied on a huge slice of luck to retake the lead following Jan Boril's equaliser, with Peter Olayinka deflecting in Luis Suarez's effort from a Messi free-kick.

    Though Suarez and Messi subsequently squandered gilt-edged chances to wrap up the points, Olayinka's own goal proved enough to take the wind out of Slavia's sails as Barca moved three points clear at the top of the group.

    With the help of some dismal Slavia defending, Barca wasted little time in hitting their stride – Messi tucking home after exchanging passes with Arthur.

    Marc-Andre ter Stegen reacted brilliantly to keep out Jaroslav Zeleny's close-range effort as the hosts responded well, yet Suarez should have extended Barca's lead before the half-hour mark.

    With Ter Stegen having pulled off two fine saves prior to half-time, Slavia got the equaliser their display merited after the break as left-back Boril charged into the area and prodded in.

    But Slavia's hard work was undone seven minutes later – Suarez bundling home from an improbable angle via Olayinka's deflection.

    Messi would have doubled his tally soon after if not for Ondrej Kolar, before Suarez fired wide when one-on-one with Slavia's goalkeeper.

    Suarez's blushes looked set to be spared when Messi met Jordi Alba's cross, only for the captain to inexplicably slice over from point-blank range, though Barca were ultimately not made to pay for their deficiencies in front of goal despite a late Slavia onslaught.
     

    What does it mean? Barca have breathing room

    With Inter overcoming Borussia Dortmund in Group F's other fixture, Barca sit on top with seven points from their opening three matches and now have some breathing space heading into the return leg against Slavia.

    It was a resilient display from Jindrich Trpisovsky's side, though, and Barca must be far better at Camp Nou as they look to keep themselves clear of the group's other big hitters.

    Miraculous Messi into the record books... again

    Not only did Messi become the first player to score in 15 successive Champions League campaigns, but the 32-year-old – who has four goals from seven appearances in all competitions this season – also matched Cristiano Ronaldo and Real Madrid great Raul in having netted against 33 different opponents in Europe's premier club tournament.

    Barca's defence fail to impress

    For all the attacking talent Barca possess, their defence still looks far from convincing at times. Wednesday's fixture was one of those occasions, with Pique, Clement Lenglet and – in front of them – Sergio Busquets particularly lacklustre up against some brave Slavia attacks.

    What's next? 

    With the Camp Nou Clasico postponed until December due to political tensions in Catalonia, Barca have six days off until their next LaLiga outing, which comes in the form of a home meeting with Real Vallodolid. Slavia, meanwhile, face Viktoria Plzen on Sunday.

© 2018 SportsMaxTV All Rights Reserved.