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Alves, Messi and Alexis celebrating a goal /PHOTO: MIGUEL RUIZ -FCB

The FC Barcelona players were satisfied when they walked off the pitch of the BayArena. Víctor Valdés said, “the key was controlling the game from the beginning.” However, Cesc Fabregas recognized that his team was sluggish at the start of the second half: “in the second half, we fell asleep in the first minutes but on the whole we played a very good game.”

The tie is not yet won. Pep Guardiola’s men are aware that this result is not definitive and that they still have a very important match at the Camp Nou. Alexis Sánchez said, “the tie isn’t over. We have to win again and do as good of a job as we did here.” Cesc also talked about the return leg: “it’s a good result but in football you have to be humble and respect your opponent. We have to go for it at the Camp Nou, like always.” Lastly, Dani Alves said that the team cannot feel too confident against a team like Bayer Leverkusen: “against German teams you can’t feel comfortable, because at the slightest chance they’ll score. We have to remain concentrated in the next match.”

Here are some of the best statements made by some of the players after the match:

Cesc:

“There were reasons we played like we did in the first half: they are a very physical team. Perhaps this kind of play is a bit boring but that’s the kind of play we needed to employ.

“We’re always excited [to play] even though it can appear otherwise from the outside. The team always has the same level of excitement and the same motivation. The boss won’t let us give up.

“They can complicate the whole game with one counterattack but we dominated the situation. We’re very pleased.

“What happened in Pamplona was a disappointment because we let the league slip away, but the Champions Leauge is the most beautiful competition there is. The Champions League is difficult [to win] because the best teams in Europe compete for the title.”

Alexis:

“I scored two goals, but a teammate gave me the opportunity to do it. I took advantage of the room they gave me.

“I always like to give more of myself in each game, but I still don’t feel completely comfortable.”

Valdés:

“You always have the return leg, and this time it’s against a German side. It’s a good result but we have to finish it off at home.

“It’s worth highlighting each player that went forward against a team that closed itself off very well defensively.”

Alves:

“I think we have an important advantage but we must finish our work at the Camp Nou.

“Winning always helps, it gives you encouragement and another spirit. A good quality that we have is that we accept things as they come. We adjusted phenomenally from one competition to another and we’ll fight until the end.

“I wasn’t too preoccupied with shooting, I simply decided to assist Messi. He had made an important play previously, and I wanted him to score. We’re all happy.”


Next training session

The next training session will be on Thursday, Feb. 16th. The team will train at 12:00 at the Ciutat Esportiva Sant Joan Despí. Víctor Valdés will hold a post-training press conference.

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