FC Barcelona captain Andres Iniesta believes that Gerard Pique’s red card in the second half of last night’s clash against Athletic Bilbao in the finals of the Supercopa de Espana effectively ended any hopes of a comeback.
FC Barcelona lost 4-0 in the first leg of the tie, following an inspirational performance by Aritz Aduriz – who bagged a second half hat-trick. Whatever slim chances the Blaugrana had of a comeback were killed when Gerard Pique was sent off for a confrontation with the assistant referee. Pique allegedly abused the assistant after he failed to spot an offside.
The expulsion of Pique made everything even more complicated – Andres Iniesta
Lionel Messi opened the scoring in the first half, and the Catalan giants were hoping to overturn a three goal deficit in the second half in a bid to keep their hopes of a second sextuple alive. However, it was not meant to be as Bilbao brought an end to their 31-year wait for a trophy by winning the Supercopa 5-1.
Addressing the media following the match, as quoted by Goal, Iniesta said:
“It was over two games, so it was difficult to come back but not impossible.
“We tried everything but the expulsion of Pique made everything even more complicated.
“These refereeing decisions happen. We don’t know what was said. Today we were infinitely better but it wasn’t just one match.”
Barcelona still looking to complete the quintuple
The 31-year-old also opined that the upcoming campaign should be a successful one for the Catalan club. Iniesta reiterated the club’s desire to complete the quintuple by winning the Club World Cup, which is scheduled to take place later in the year.
“I am convinced this will be a great campaign.
“We must not get things confused – we’ll go for the Club World Cup, our fifth title of the year, but for now we’ll focus on La Liga which restarts for us on Sunday.”
FC Barcelona have conceded nine goals in the last three matches and narrowly beat Sevilla in the Spanish Super Cup.