Barcelona Champions League Interviews Player Analysis

Koeman: “We entered the game with fear”

Koeman during FC Barcelona's friendly against Nàstic/ DAVID RAMOS, GETTY IMAGES EUROPE
Koeman during FC Barcelona’s friendly against Nàstic/ DAVID RAMOS, GETTY IMAGES EUROPE

After another disappointment, this time against Juventus in the Champions League, Ronald Koeman, Ter Stegen, Araújo and Griezmann spoke to the press.

The Dutch coach began by giving his take on why his team lost the game: “Part of our defeat has come in the first minutes, we have entered the game badly, with fear, without aggression, it seemed that we had entered not to lose instead of trying to control the game”.

He also talked about the penalties: “The first one is not a penalty, but if a penalty is given to Cristiano, Messi’s is also a penalty”.

He confirmed that the reasons behind the substitutions of Jordi Alba and Lenglet were that both players were carrying a yellow card each.

Besides Ronald Koeman, one of the players to speak was Antoine Griezmann.

The French player said that his team has to put the excuses away and have to keep working. He also explained why they lost this important game, from his point of view: “We weren’t on the pitch. In the first half, we got run over. We lacked everything: desire, attitude, wanting to run, wanting to defend … [we got it] all wrong”.

Another player that spoke after the match was Marc-André ter Stegen.

“There are two things. One is individual mistakes; the other is how you defend yourself. You have to value it in both ways. In this sense, we are not fortunate enough to be free of them. At any moment, when we get lost or whatever, they score on us, and this is very hard. We have to get out of there, we have to do our homework and I can say that we are working hard to do so,” ter Stegen explained to the press.

And the last player who met the press was Ronald Araújo, the Uruguayan defender who has been one of the main protagonists.

He does not agree with the referee’s call for the first penalty that gave Juventus the opener early on.

“For me it’s not a penalty, I’ve seen it on TV and I don’t see it anywhere. I win [the duel] with my arm [legally], and he falls. I’m in front of him, so it can’t be my fault” he said. Beyond the referees decisions, he recognized the mistakes: “We know it’s hard for us and we come out weak, conceding situations we shouldn’t concede and they took advantage of that to get ahead. That must be corrected.”

With this defeat, Barcelona finish the group phase second behind Juventus with 15 points.