Mascherano in the match against Levante / PHOTO: VÍCTOR SALGADO - FCB

Javier Mascherano was one of the standout Barça players in the match against Málaga. ‘El Jefecito’, who is proving to be one of the most on-form players so far this season, summarized the match with the following sentence: “We had a lot of possession, but we didn’t take advantage of our chances.”

Putting in a big effort against a strong team

“These are three important points, because Málaga are a good team,” said Mascherano before he added that  “we came into the match after putting in a strong effort on Wednesday against Atéltico, and today we had to do it again. We have to improve some things, but the work is easier when you’re winning. We put in a strong effort against a great team.”

On form Mascherano

When asked about his excellent start to the season the Argentine full back noted: “I feel great. I’m aware that you’re expected to not commit any errors when you play for Barça, and I work to be at the Club’s level. Everything can change in one play, everything that you do well can be turned upside down with a single move... I cannot be overconfident.”

On the second leg of the Spanish Super Cup against Atlético Madrid, Mascherano declared that his team will approach the match “as if it were 0-0, because we don’t know how to play any other way. We would suffer if we played to hold a result.”

The following statements were made by Cesc, Xavi and Sergi Roberto after the match:

Cesc:

“We really had a hard time in the final minutes of the match, but we have to be able to get through the hard times. We’re starting a new season, with lots of new things, we have to keep on improving.”

“We had a good first half, but it’s true that in the second we lost a bit of intensity. We’re still feeling the Super Cup match, and it was noticeable, but this was a very, very important victory.”

“We could have scored more goals, we had the chances to do so, but we didn’t score and we suffered in the final minutes.”

“I always try to do a good job, I want to continue improving. The fans want more from me and I have to give it. I know what the manager whats from me, starting from there, I try to work to win the manager’s confidence.”

“The team does not depend on Messi and Neymar, we’re all important, we all have responsibilities in the team.”

Sergi Roberto:

“I had a really good preseason, but I’m a Barça player, where the best midfielders in the world play and it’s not easy to get playing time. But I know that the manager has confidence in me, we’ve only played two league games and one Super Cup match. I’m not nervous, the season is long.”

“The manager spoke with all of us, he told us that we are al important, that he needed us and that we should be ready.”

“Our approach to the match was correct, but they closed themselves off at the back and it was difficult for us to play our style. I’m sure we’re going to have a lot of games like this one.”

“I played seven minutes, but they were long because the match was crazy. I was sent out to keep an eye on the follow-up plays and try to help the team.”

Xavi:

“They defended well in the first half, they were closing down our passing lanes, so we tried to play on the wings, similar to what we did at the Calderón. They relied more on counterattacks in the second half, but in general we did our work well. I’m happy.”

“Atlético Madrid are a difficult opponent, very tough, but we’re playing at home and we have to make our away goal count. We want the Super Cup to stay in Barcelona.”

“Neymar is very young but he’s adapting perfectly, he needs to get in the rhythm of things little by little, I’m sure he’s going to be important for the team.”

“I don’t believe this league is a two-horse race. There are teams that will fight ... Málaga proved that it’s not easy to beat anyone.”