Luis Enrique admitted he was “scared” by Filipe Luis’ red-card tackle on Lionel Messi in Barcelona’s 2-1 win against Atletico Madrid on Saturday.
Filipe flew into Messi with his studs showing on the cusp of half-time, prompting an animated reaction from Enrique, who confessed he had feared the worst when witnessing the challenge in real time.
“We end the game delighted because we’ve beaten a great team,” he said after the match.
“However, we still have many things to improve on.
“If we don’t win 4-0, it’s as if we had an awful game, but that wasn’t the case [against Atleti].
“We started the first half in a strange way, making a series of mistakes.
“Then we woke up, forced Atletico into their box and scored two goals.
“In the second half, I told [my players] they had to go on the attack, but the game panned out differently.
“We failed to kill off the match, but we played with two more players.
“Still, it’s clear that the red cards didn’t affect the game.
“I was scared [for Messi] because I feared the worst. My reaction on the pitch said it all.
“[On Luis Suarez], he was good at Liverpool and has got even better here.
“[On whether the title race was decided], there’s still a lot of the season to go.
“[On Claudio Bravo’s save on Antoine Griezmann], it was as decisive as our goals.
“[On his 100 percent record against Diego Simeone as Barca Coach], I lost two of my three games against him at Celta [Vigo].”