Emery: ‘We lost the battle’

Sevilla boss Unai Emery said his side had lost the battle in the 3-1 defeat at Valencia but there is still a long way to go in the League.

A Dani Parejo brace and a Javi Fuego strike just before the hour mark put paid to the Andalusians after a Carlos Bacca penalty had reduced the first-half arrears, although Emery insists Sevilla are still very much in the fight for a Champions League place.

“Today we lost the battle but we have not lost the war. There is still a long way to go,” he told reporters following a game that produced three penalties, one of them saved by Valencia stopper Dani Alves.

“We are now two points behind Valencia but our chances are still intact. The fact we are still in three competitions is pleasing but it is very demanding and we need to maintain our performance levels.

“I think this team has character and personality but the mistakes we’ve been making have cost us. It was a really intense game and we both knew the importance of the three points, so that made it hard, but there were dubious penalties awarded in both areas.

“It’s left us a difficult gap to bridge and now we must concentrate on this week’s Copa del Rey game with Espanyol, although we leave Mestalla with our heads held high,” maintained Emery.

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