Valverde: Barcelona players will solve any issues internally

By Sports Desk October 28, 2019

Barcelona boss Ernesto Valverde insists any problems within the team will be resolved privately following recent comments made by goalkeeper Marc-Andre ter Stegen.

The German goalkeeper criticised his side's performance in last week's 2-1 Champions League win at Slavia Prague and stated improvements had to be made.

Slavia ended the match in Prague on top and Ter Stegen suggested he and his team-mates needed to discuss the below-par display among themselves.

Valverde believes too much importance was given to the final stages of the match, however, and wants any issues to remain internal.

"When matches end, everyone leaves with an opinion of what happened on the field," he said at a news conference on Monday. 

"Matches can be seen in many ways, and if we have to solve something, we will solve it with within the club and not publicly. 

"When the game ends, people's impression is of the final minutes and they don't think about the overall game.

"In the first half of the Slavia game we had two or three chances on goal, they attacked and we did as well. In the second half, they got an early goal and we managed to get the result we wanted in the end. 

"They pressed us and that's it. If it had been a 4-1 win, we would be talking like we had the same result as in Eibar [a 3-0 victory]. This is football and it is normal."

Barcelona have not played since that narrow victory in Prague five days ago due to Saturday's scheduled Clasico with Real Madrid being called off as a result of civil unrest in Catalonia.

The reigning LaLiga champions are back in action on Tuesday with a home match against Real Valladolid, who have already taken points off Madrid and Atletico Madrid this term.

"They have had a good run and against the top teams have got some good results," Valverde said. "Taking into account last year's game [a 1-0 win for Barca] which was complicated, this is a game which we have many hopes for after the break this week.

"They have reinforced their style because they are doing well. I expect them to play like they have in recent matches. They will be solid and hard to overcome."

Samuel Umtiti remains a major doubt for the game due to a knee injury, while youngsters Carles Perez, Ansu Fati and Carles Alena are all pushing for inclusion at Camp Nou.

"Umtiti trained apart from the group [on Sunday], though I think it will be difficult for him to participate," he said. "There may be some other changes as well.

"[Perez and Fati] are with the first team and that is, in principle, the idea we have, even though they are able to play with the B team and might at some point play for them.

"Alena hasn't played as much as I thought, and he possibly deserves more game time because he is giving everything in training. There is a lot of competition in midfield and he can be called at any time so he has to be prepared."

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