FC Barcelona

Xavi says Barcelona found it 'difficult' to avoid Copa del Rey upset at Linares Deportivo

By Sean Walsh
Barcelona escaped a cup upset
Barcelona escaped a cup upset / Quality Sport Images/GettyImages

Xavi has spoken of his delight that his Barcelona side survived a Copa del Rey scare at the hands of Linares Deportivo, coming from behind to win 2-1 on Wednesday evening.

Hugo Diaz gave the Spanish minnows a first-half lead and Barça trailed at the break, before Ousmane Dembele and Ferran Jutgla struck after the interval to turn the game on its head and spare the Blaugrana's blushes.

Speaking post-game, Xavi said it was 'difficult' for Barcelona to impose their dominance on a side who play in the third tier of Spanish football.

“It’s an important victory that means we pass to the second round,” Xavi began, via Marca.

“It was difficult for us to understand how to dominate midfield and find the final pass, which is where our talent should shine. In the second half we were better.

“But it was a tight game and nothing was easy. This victory is one more step. At half-time, I told them that we were better, but that two things could happen: either a silly red card or lack of concentration and that we did not match their intensity, their faith or their desire. I told them it was going to be a victory of faith, of believing, of taking advantage of opportunities. We made it through and I’m happy.”

Barcelona will be hoping to maintain their winning start to the second half of the season when they travel to Granada in La Liga on Saturday, and could even end the weekend as high as third place in the table.