Luis Enrique Press Conference Post Espanyol
“If you play a first half like that, with rhythm and intensity, and you tire out your opponent, an opponent that can bring the pressure, and which tries to put you in compromising situations...it gave us a chance in the second half to find more space, we were able to take advantage of a miscue to go ahead on the scoreboard, and the rhythm, I believe, benefitted us...Even though it might seem we played much better in the second half than in the first, I was very happy with the team’s performance in the first half...And I think it’s a well-deserved victory.”
On the team being in excellent physical shape at this point of the season and whether it makes him more optimistic heading into the final three games.
“We played more players than they did who were able to rest this past week. Espanyol played more players, with the exception of one, who just played three days ago, and yes, if we were able to keep the pace of the game up during all 90 minutes, not just in the second half, we knew we were going to have more of a chance to win. And I think the team was mature enough to know how to identify all the phases of the game.”
On how Barça managed their emotions:
“I think we were fine. It was an intense derby on both side of the ball, but all the principles of sportsmanship were followed."
On how happy he was for Suárez having ended his goal drought, and whether he was worried:
“I wasn’t worried, I think it was you who were worried. You and a lot of Uruguayans. Even when a striker goes through a dry spell, you don’t worry...Luis Suárez brings a lot of other things to the table and, in his case, goals are never far away.”
On how Barça overcame Espanyol’s pressure up the field:
“I think it was one of the more important things because it’s tough to constantly deal with that kind of pressure...and when you have to deal with it close to your own goal. You’ve got anticipate or you can commit an error. I think we read the game well, although there are always things we can improve, and I’m satisfied with what I saw.”