The Azulgrana players highlighted the significance of winning all nine points before the international break. Top-of-the-table Barça held onto its one-goal lead as Mauricio Pellegrino’s men nearly nicked a goal at the end of the game at the Camp Nou. Xavi Hernández said that “these three points are very important. The one-goal lead meant that any play could have ended in the equaliser. We played a good game against a dangerous rival.”

The midfielder also praised the team’s collective effort: “I play so that my team can win, so that there’s fluidity to our play. We achieved that in the first half, even though a second goal would have given us more tranquility. Valencia are a complicated rival, and if you don’t make it 2-0 they’re more dangerous.”

Excellent start to La Liga

The vice-captain, while noting that the team was still recovering from the physical exhaustion of playing most of the match against Real Madrid with 10 men, talked about the team’s excellent La Liga start: “we played at a good level in our two home matches. We have to improve a couple of things, but we’re on form. We did a good job, we’re feeling good on the pitch.”

Analysing his team-mates’ performance

The Azulgrana vice-captain talked about a few of his team-mates. On Cesc Fàbregas, he said: “he’s an important player for the team, he participates a lot in the creation of our play. He could have scored a couple of goals. He’ll be important throughout the entire season.”

On Alex Song: “he’s a great player. He’s very similar to Sergio Busquets: he gives us balance and he recovers a lot of balls. He’s very good tactically and his positional play is great.”

Here are the statements made by the players after the match:

Andrés Iniesta:

“We could have had a bigger advantage but we didn't covert our chances. I’m pleased with the win. When you have chances and you don’t score, your opponent will always have the chance to score in the end. The team would have been much more calm with a 2-0. We have to improve.”

On his tribute from the Camp Nou: “it’s memory that I’ll carry with me in my heart. These fans have watched me grow and I have a special affection for them.”

In reference to his award: “what’s truly important is to be among the finalists. This is what brings satisfaction. If you win the award, great. But this award isn’t just for me, it for all the players there were there [finalists].”

Pedro Rodríguez:

“We’re playing well and we’re winning against important teams. We have to continue like this.”

On Cesc: “he’s a fantastic player and he had a great game. It’s difficult to get playing time when you’re a Barça player, there are a lot of players on the squad. I hope he’s on form because he’s a very important player for the team.”

“It was a difficult match, Valencia’s players positioned themselves well on the pitch. But we won three more points, and it’s important to not lose at home.”

“I’m comfortable with my team-mates and I’m training well.”

“Valencia are a very good team. Luckily we won and we’re pleased with the three points.”

On Andrés Iniesta’s award: “he deserves it for the season he had. Leo Messi also deserved it.”

Alex Song:

“What I have to do when I get the ball is pass it immediately.”

“It was incredible, the fans always try to help by cheering us on. It’s important that we won the game.”

Jordi Alba:

“It was a special game. Now I’m a Barça player, but I spent a lot of time with Valencia and I have a lot of friends there.”

“We have to improve, but we’ve won every point in play. We can go to our international teams without having to worry. We’re happy, but there’s still a lot of Liga still to play.”

On Song: “He played a great game against Real Madrid, he’ll bring a lot of things to this Club.”

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