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Xavi complains about Eintracht Frankfurt pitch in Barcelona draw

Barça were held to a 1-1 draw in Frankfurt and their coach Xavi Hernández returned to one of his classic excuses.

Xavi was unhappy about the pitch
DeFodi ImagesGetty

Barcelona coach Xavi Hernández watched his side battle their way to a 1-1 draw against Eintracht Frankfurt in Germany in the first leg of the Europa League quarterfinal, and in his post match comments he fell back on one of his classic excuses for a poor performance: the pitch.

A sublimely skilful midfielder in his day, who plied his trade much of the time on the perfect turf at the Camp Nou, Xavi has long been known for criticising any pitch that is less smooth than the baize of a snooker table, and tonight was no exception.

“They came out like demons on the counterattack and that made life difficult for us. Also, the pitch wasn’t great and that didn’t help our play,” said Xavi, claiming that the poor turf had forced his players to take an extra touch which slowed them down. Something that didn’t seem to bother Frankfurt, who hit Barcelona with a number of lightning counter-attacks.

Xavi expects better at Camp Nou

The Barcelona coach was confident that on the pitch at the Camp Nou in next week’s second leg, on Thursday evening, things will be easier for the Barcelona players.

Xavi also said he was delighted with Barcelona’s goal, which came from a combination between “Ousmane, Frenkie, Ferran.” “They are a really physical rival, and move from defence to attack so well. I hope it’s a pressure cooker [at the Camp Nou]. We’re going home happy with the result.”

Asked about Piqué, who came off after 23 minutes, Xavi explained the player has been suffering for some time with an injury and he couldn’t carry on. “We hope it’s not much.”


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