Ernesto Valverde ‘saw the ghost of Butarque’ for Barcelona

Barcelona Coach Ernesto Valverde admitted to seeing ‘the ghost of Butarque’ during his side’s last-gasp win at Rayo Vallecano.

The Catalan giants trailed 2-1 at Rayo going into the closing stages, just as they had done at Leganes earlier in the season, but unlike at Butarque the Blaugrana netted two late goals.

“The ghost of Butarque appeared during the second half,” Valverde told reporters after the game.

“You have to value the opponent, Rayo Vallecano have done many things well. After the first goal we lost control, we regressed and they grew into the game.

“I have watched the matches of Rayo Vallecano and the only one that has lost with margin was that against Alaves. I see them as a strong team who will be ok.

“Will Lionel Messi play against Inter? We will assess him in training this week. I think we always play better with (Lionel) Messi (playing)."

“Luis Suarez has been the difference for this team, we are very grateful for his performances.

“Coutinho? In recent games he has been excellent. Today he was very good in the first half and had difficulties after half time, like all our team. He adds a lot for us.

“As long as we get three goals, we're not that bad. We always want to keep a clean sheet (but here), we have conceded two goals, so we must continue working.

“Sometimes when (recent) matches get so good, it's even counterproductive, but the team's attitude has been very good.”

Tags Ernesto Valverde