Ernesto Valverde spoke to reporters after his side’s 2-0 victory over Alavés and said he expects to have a “more competitive side” before the transfer window closes on August 31.
Speaking to Barça TV, Valverde said of the match: “It was a hard-won victory, a difficult one because they set up to give us little space. They sat well back and it was difficult to find spaces. We had to have a lot of patience. It was also very hot, but we were able to take our chances. Our intention, because we want to play through the middle, is also to open up the pitch to create room. It’s clear the idea is to get into shooting positions and to make them count. Leo had chances to score more goals and had the misfortune to miss the penalty.
“We came here at a time when people are saying a lot of things about Barça, and that can have a negative impact. But the team showed that was not the case," Valverde continued. "We've had some difficult moments and we've overcome them. Now we've got six points and we're moving forward.”
"Messi can make things happen"
The Barça boss spoke later in his post-match press conference and discussed Messi, signings and his wide men.
“We know that Messi tends to go out and look for ways to make things happen. You can always improve but independently of that when a rival sits back so much it’s difficult to get anything positive. But Messi is capable of doing that. So are Iniesta and Deulofeu, but it’s always difficult. We’re happy with the general direction of the team.
"Deulofeu and Aleix both have their style. We are looking for depth and they are wingers. And Alcácer, although he plays on the flank, makes diagonal passes. Denis[Suárez] is a player who plays inside. They all play as their characteristics dictate.”
Valverde: "We want a more competitive side"
Finally, Valverde suggested that Barça’s business in the transfer window has not been concluded with the arrival of Ousmane Dembélé and Paulinho: “I hope to have a better team by August 31. We hope that, when the final day of the window comes, we have a more competitive side. That is clear.”