Enrique: Celtic fans exemplary

Barcelona boss Luis Enrique hailed Celtic’s fans as “exemplary” and Parkhead for “one of the best atmospheres” in Europe, despite the former booing Neymar.

Neymar drew the ire of Celtic fans when he was substituted towards the end of Barca’s 2-0 Champions League win in Glasgow after several scuffles with Mikael Lustig, but Enrique – while praising the forward for being in “control” – refused to condemn the home supporters.

“This Barca team are solvent, able to overcome one of the toughest Champions League groups with a match to spare,” the Coach said after the game.

“They’re to be congratulated because we’re in a very difficult group, and throughout all the matches, they’ve shown that Barca are a reliable team.

“They showed their level here. It was a lot like the game against Manchester City [at Camp Nou].

“Celtic tried to make life difficult for us with very high pressing, but we were able to get the ball, we played without problems and gradually we found it easier.

“In the final third, we were decisive, with Messi at his usual level.

“Neymar? He was in control of the situation. The Celtic fans booing him? It was only for five or 10 minutes, they were spectacular.

“I missed the ‘You’ll Never Walk Alone’ [pre-game song], but it’s a good thing that I sat in the stands because it’s one of the best atmospheres that can be sampled in Europe.

“I don’t think you have to criticise the fans for [their behaviour for] five or 10 minutes or a small scuffle with an opponent. Celtic have an exemplary set of fans.

“Pique and Alba replaced? They’ve just come back from injury, but I didn’t take them off while thinking about Anoeta. It was more so for the medium term.

“Marlon? He’s just arrived from Brazil and I don’t know if you could consider him a ‘canterano’, but he has character and has already shown that he can help us.”

Tags Celtic Luis Enrique