Luis Enrique got Barça off to a winning start in the Champions League. PHOTO: MIGUEL RUIZ - FCB

First Champions League game and first win. “We found it hard to make the right choices over the final metres” said Luis Enrique, who was nevertheless positive about his side’s one goal victory against APOEL. “We have great, quality players but we didn’t get through on goal for a variety of reasons. We weren’t at our best over the final metres. We weren’t moving the ball around fast enough.”

On the issue of the three goalkeepers he commented that “it’s not a position like the others. But I have three great keepers and I’ll use them. I don’t believe in the cliché of a first choice keeper. I want them all to be ready. I didn’t tell them who would play, that’s my idea. I expect us to get results, and I have total faith that we will. I’m not associating any one keeper with any one competition. I want them all to be prepared and I’ll deal with them my way.”

I don’t believe in the cliché of a first choice keeper. I want them all to be ready

He went on to say that “they put ten players behind the ball. It’s not easy to attack a team like that, but they did create some danger. We scored from a set piece and we’re working on those, so I’m glad it came off … We managers worry when things don’t go to plan. These aren’t easy games, APOEL played a serious game … We’ll be showing the players what they need to get better. We can’t settle for this, we have to play better. I am sure we can make even better players of the players we have.”

I know Samper very well. He has personality. He's a great finding for the club

Luis Enrique handed Sergi Samper his debut tonight in a Champions League match of all things. “I know Samper very well” he said. “He has personality. He only made one mistake. He carried the team well and is a great finding for the club. He’ll help us on this journey.” And on Xavi he commented that “he seems fine to me. I’ve spoken with him and we’ve got a good relationship. And Piqué brings a lot of joy to the team. He’s a great player and I’m so happy he scored.”

I’m sticking to my guns. I need my whole team

Asked about the nine changes he made to the team that played at the weekend, he concluded that “perhaps our play was less fluid because of all the rotations, but I’m sticking to my guns. I need my whole team, although I’m sure I’ll get it wrong sometimes. We can’t always win 3-0 or 4-0, but I have total faith in my players.”


Luis Enrique: "I have blind faith in all my... por fcbarcelona