Ernesto Valverde claimed ‘positioning errors’ led to Barcelona’s 4-3 defeat to Real Betis on Sunday but ‘knew we weren’t going to dominate’.
“We couldn’t latch ourselves back on to the game,” the Coach said after Sunday’s game.
“We didn’t play well in the first half and they took a good lead. When we cut it in the second half, they responded quickly.
“We paid dearly for not playing well in the first half. We came from a run of very good results.
“We didn’t start well and we’re lacking something in an all-round sense. We lack freshness when it comes to finishing off moves and we must improve in that respect.
“They were free-flowing and it could be seen against Milan. We didn’t control the exchange of blows, and that's where the danger came from. That’s what we have to improve on.
“They made things very risky for us, with many players going forward and only a few staying back.
“Their goals came from positioning errors and we had to stop their counterattacks somehow.
“We knew we weren’t going to dominate the game and that it would be end-to-end, although we thought we’d end up with better sensations.
“They have a particular style, but I think we should’ve responded differently. It’s always good to be top, but you expect more from our situation.
“It’s shaping up to be a very competitive League and one that’s very complicated. Every game you win takes a lot out of you. We have to turn things around.
“It wasn’t convenient to shake the match and give it a jolt. It was very much man-on-man and we knew they were going to press all our players.
“We could’ve handled things better at 1-2 and 2-3, but I think Vidal can be a starter for us at any time.
“Sometimes it’s one player and sometimes another. I didn’t think much control would be exerted in the game, so I thought Malcom’s pace could be important.
“We expect a lot from Dembele because of his quality. He has great talent and we have faith in him.”