Luis Enrique: Barcelona will struggle again

7 years ago

Luis Enrique believes Barcelona have overcome their recent rough patch but insists his side will go through another poor run of form at some point in the season.

Concerns were raised over the Blaugrana's chances of silverware when they suffered a 3-1 defeat to Real Madrid in the Clasico and immediately followed up that result with a 1-0 loss to Celta Vigo.

But Barca are now on a three-game winning streak having beaten Sevilla 5-1 in La Liga at the weekend and the coach said he was happy to be over the slump, but does believe there will be another dip at some point in the season.

"Throughout the season there will be another difficult time," he told reporters.
"I hope I am mistaken but it would be naive to think they will not return. These moments affect the big teams but they are part of the process."

Barca take on APOEL on Tuesday in the Champions League and Luis Enrique insists a victory in Cyprus is a must for his side as they look to finish above Paris Saint-Germain, who sit one point ahead of them in Group F.

The coach added: "We are expecting a tough match similiar to when we played against them the first time. This will be a complicated match.

"We need the points to be in with a chance of finishing top of the group. We would prefer to play the second leg at home in the next round as it will give us an advantage. APOEL is the next step to overcome."

The 44-year-old went on to praise midfielder Xavi, who this season broke the record for most Champions League appearances of all-time.

Luis Enrique said: "Xavi is a unique player. I just want him to keep doing what he is doing right now, I love the way he plays and not only because he's a key player for us when he is playing, but also when he is not playing."

Despite not scoring as of yet for Barcelona, Luis Suarez has provided four league assists since making his debut aganist Real Madrid and the coach believes he will become even more effective as he settles into the team.
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"Neymar, Messi and Suarez are doing very well," said Luis Enrique. "Leo and Neymar played together last season and we were waiting for Luis Suarez. He is a different kind of striker than we are used to in Barcelona.
"There is a lot of the season still to go and we will see how he can associate with the rest of the team.

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