It’s a shame, Xavi laments over draw

By Oviri Kelvin, Sports Editor

Barcelona manager Xavi Hernandez has been left disappointed by the result of the match against a familiar foe, Rayo Vallecano, where the Catalans were held to a goalless draw at Camp Nou.

Xavi, condemning his players’ flaws, said he was disappointed following the lots of enthusiasm that had been generated which they failed to prove on the pitch.

The Catalans boss noted that the players need to be more effective to finish every given opportunity.

“Trying to tell them [players] that this is just the beginning. We have generated a lot of enthusiasm and we will show it on the field,” Xavi said.

“We have to improve our effectiveness, take advantage of our opportunities.

“Today we have seen a difficult team like Rayo, worked very well by Andoni Iraola.

“The pity is not having scored a goal. We lacked effectiveness, they also lost a lot of time, and in each action, they lost time. We lacked effectiveness,” the Barcelona manager insisted.

Rayo Vallecano defeated Barcelona, home and away, last season to register themselves as a formidable foe against Blaugrana.

Barcelona inarguably were aware of the threats posed by Rayo Vallecano and needed to finish them off at Camp Nou but failed in their deliveries.

Xavi continued: “It’s been a shame, I’m disappointed. A lot of expectations have been generated this season and starting like this is not the best way.

“We knew about Rayo’s difficulties, yesterday I talked about having to circulate the ball a lot and it cost us to keep working hard,” he added.

The Barcelona manager, however, praised the club’s golden hands, Ter Stegen, for saving a point for Barcelona by ensuring he kept a clean sheet.

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Moreover, while Xavi reposed his confidence in Stegen, he added that keeping a clean sheet is what he was brought in for.

“It’s important that the goalkeeper gives us points, that’s what he’s for, I believe in him,” said the Barça coach,” he said.

During the game, Xavi had to employ a different tactical approach in the second half to have dominant control of the game which affected the players.

“We tried to have superiority in the centre of the field. It was difficult for us to find that 3 against 2 and in the second half I changed the system to have that superiority,” he said

“The expectations created have weighed on us a bit, I have told them that the pressure is now on me Not for them,” Xavi added.

Consequent to the result, Rayo Vallecano denied Robert Lewandowski and Raphinha from getting a goal in the debut La Liga match on Saturday. Both players will have to search for their debut goal in their next La Liga fixture at Estadio Anoeta against Real Sociedad.

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