The record 31-time Copa del Rey champions had to dig deep to reach the next round in a seven-goal thriller against CF Intercity.
Barcelona manager Xavi Hernandez admitted his side cannot leave happy after Wednesday’s 4-3 win over Spanish third-tier side Intercity in the Copa del Rey.
Ansu Fati’s extra-time winner was the decider in a seven-goal thriller in Alicante. Barcelona may have dominated possession and had 29 shots compared to Intercity’s nine, but they needed over 120 minutes to win the round-of-32 tie.
Speaking in a post-match press conference, Xavi said: “We conceded a lot in a game that we had very much under control. We haven’t blocked centers, we haven’t defended the area well.
“We can’t leave happy. The game has been pretty good, but we have to be more forceful. In defense, it can happen, but the game had to be finished and there has been a lack of forcefulness.”
‘Barca lacking forcefulness’
Oriol Soldevila provided Barcelona a scare by scoring a second-half hat-trick after Ronald Araujo’s early opener. Ousmane Dembele and Raphinha scored to put Barca back ahead, but the attacker equalized each time – until Fati’s deflected effort in extra time.
“But we had to dominate the game, and we were good in the rhythm,” Xavi added.
“We have interesting things, but we have suffered a lot. We’ve gotten too complicated. Today I’m happy with the game. We are lacking forcefulness. But we are in a good moment of play. I have to think about what we can improve.”
Barcelona next visit Atletico Madrid on Sunday in LaLiga.