In what was a tie largely determined by some questionable refereeing, the defending champions only just managed to salvage a point at against Real Betis at the Estadio Benito Villamarín, thanks to a 90th minute Luis Suarez goal
Barca now sit a point behind arch rivals Real Madrid in the La Liga, who have 2 games in hand, but Luis Enrique insisted that this was a positive, as they managed to ‘rescue a point’ against a side who he believed were the better side for most of the second half.
In his post-match press conference, he said: “We rescued a point and I look at that as positive. The 1-1 result is positive for us as we pick up a point. They were the better side for 30 minutes in the second half, the first was more equal and we were able to salvage a point in the end.”
It wasn’t a typical Barcelona performance, who were largely unconvincing in the first half. Holding one’s own against the Blaugrana is no mean feat, but for most of the first half Real Betis did just that, often seeming to get the better of the Catalan giants.
“In the first half we didn’t have too many problems and they didn’t really create too much but then neither did we,” Enrique said. “In the second half they pressured us high up the field and created chances. We found it difficult to bring the ball out from the back and they were the better side.”
In the 75th minute, Alexander Alegria gave his side the lead with an easy finish from close range after Barcelona failed to defend a corner, one of their many mistake on the night.
“We made a lot of mistakes and we were not at our normal level and that allowed our opponents to grow in confidence,” said Enrique.
He insisted that after that goal, the hosts sat back and focused more on defending, which allowed his side to attack more.
Barca would no doubt feel hard done by being denied a goal, which was adjudged to have not crossed the line.
However, Enrique chose to keep his displeasure at the incident private, saying:”Referees need help, be it cameras or whatever, for decisions which favours us or not.”