Luis Enrique admitted Barcelona’s “credit limit has been reached” after they lost their La Liga lead in Saturday’s 2-1 defeat to Valencia.
Lionel Messi’s 500th career goal proved futile as Barca fell to a third straight League defeat for the first time in 13 years, thus allowing Atletico Madrid to catch them on 76 points at the summit, but Enrique was adamant his side deserved to win the match.
“They are three points that should’ve been ours, but football is unpredictable and allows you to win games almost without attacking. We have to accept that,” the Coach said after the game.
“We now face a wonderful challenge of winning the League and cup.
“I congratulate my players for how they’ve faced this adversity, now it’s up to us. We know we still have our fate in our hands, but our credit limit has been reached.
“We lacked the necessary fortune to put the game back on track, and we have to improve many things, but this isn’t a day to criticise my players, it’s to praise them.
“If there’s a team capable of [winning their five remaining games], it’s this one.
“We played well, with precision and having dominated phases of the game, and that’s the way to go.
“We can only win through [a mix of] our game, order, organisation, pressure and being well-drilled.
“Now we must stay strong. There can be no Barca fan who isn’t proud of their team [after the game].
“[On not making any substitutions], it would be unfair to have taken any of my players off. They played at a high level and were better than their opponents.
“I’m happy with the squad I have. The decision not to make any changes was because we were superior and they all deserved to finish the game.
“All the decisions I make are mine, and I’ll keep making them as I deem appropriate.”