Jordi Alba has his say on worrying run for La Liga champions Barcelona

David Cooper 30/09/2018
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There is “no need to be alarmed” about Barcelona’s faltering form in La Liga, according to left-back Jordi Alba.

The champions made it three top-flight matches without a win during Saturday’s 1-1 home draw against Athletic Bilbao. Ernesto Valverde’s men, however, still remained top of the table on goal difference thanks to Real Madrid’s later 0-0 derby stalemate with Atletico.

“This has just begun,” Alba told Mundo Deportivo. “We are at the top of the classification and that means that La Liga is very close.

“We have to be calm, but we must improve many things. We arrive [at the goal] many times and the ball does not enter the goal.

“A bit of luck is needed, as our rivals arrive few times and score.”

“[There is] No need to be alarmed. We are not satisfied with the results, it is clear that we can all give more, but this has just begun.”

Barca visit Tottenham on Wednesday in the Champions League and Valencia on Sunday in La Liga.

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Watch: Ernesto Valverde takes blame for resting Lionel Messi in Barcelona's draw to Athletic Bilbao

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Barcelona boss Ernesto Valverde shouldered the blame for his club’s 1-1 draw to Athletic Bilbao on Saturday, when he rested Lionel Messi.

Without their star striker on the pitch, the Catalan club could only manage one goal, coming from Munir El Haddadi in the 84th minute

“It’s my absolute responsibility, we have four games in 10 days and I thought that Leo [Messi] and [Sergio] Busquets had to rest know that we have a very difficult match on Wednesday,” Valverde said.

See Valverde’s full comments in the video below.

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Marc-Andre ter Stegen has a message for panicked Barcelona fans

David Cooper 30/09/2018
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Goalkeeper Marc-Andre ter Stegen has called on Barcelona supporters to “remain positive” after Saturday’s 1-1 draw with Athletic Bilbao made it three-successive winless matches in La Liga.

Oscar de Marcos sneaked in at the back post to volley in a 41st-minute opener for the visitors to Camp Nou. Munir El Haddadi struck from close range to level things up on 84 minutes, but this was too late to gain victory.

“A tough afternoon for us, for me and for sure all Barca fans,” Germany international Ter Stegen tweeted. “The expectation of my own game is higher than what I showed today.

“We’re human and what I ask for is that we remain positive. The next match is all that matters now.

“Let’s stick together and do that on Wednesday.”

Barca visit Tottenham on Wednesday in the Champions League and Valencia on Sunday in La Liga.

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