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Paco Alcácer is coming on strong at just the right time. After replacing the injured Rafinha in the 17th minute of Sunday night’s 4–1 victory at Granada (Highlights, Match Report), the 23-year-old striker, in his first season with Barça, scored to give Barça a 2–1 lead after Granada had complicated things with an equaliser.
“I’m happy to be able to help the team in any way I can,” he said, modestly, after the game. “Anyone who comes off the bench has to give one-hundred percent.”
The goal was just another reminder that Alcácer is looking more comfortable out on the field with every passing game.
“I’ve worked hard to get my opportunity and take advantage of it,” he said.
Sergi Roberto, Neymar, and Carles Aleñà also spoke to the media. Here are the highlights of what they had to say:
“We knew it was a very difficult field, the grass was very dry, and we like it faster for our style of play.”
“We had plenty of chances in the first half but the ball wasn't going in.”
“It's a good win to take back with us to Barcelona as we get ready for the next game.”
“I'm very happy to score my 100th goal, but I'm even happier because we won.”
“Every goal I score is important in its own way, which is why I can't just choose one.”
“It's a day I've been waiting for a long time, but today was the day, and we were able to win, so that makes it doubly joyous.”
“They told me to do what I know how to, what I've been doing with the reserves, to be relaxed, and that my teammates would help me out.”
“And it's true, playing alongside these guys makes everything easier, and I want to especially thank Luis Enrique and all the players for doing just that.”
The Manager’s Take
Head coach Luis Enrique Martínez talked about his first impressions of the big win just minutes after the final whistle, highlighting that “justice was served” based on what he saw throughout the match.
Here are the highlights of what he had to say:
On the first game after the international break:
“[My players] have been saddled with loads of travel and time changes, but they responded well.”
“It’s an important loss for us and a sad piece of news.”
On Paco Alcácer:
“He was sublime tonight. He created continual danger. I’m happy for him.”
“Those kinds of numbers are only within reach of a beast like him.”
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