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Good for Barcelona if Lionel Messi plays as a winger: Luis Enrique

4.05K   //    02 Feb 2015, 05:29 IST
Barcelona’s Luis Suarez, Neymar, Lionel Messi and Rafinha

Barcelona overturned a deficit to beat Villarreal 3-2 tonight, thus ending an 18-match unbeaten streak for the valiant away side. Within minutes of falling behind, Rafinha and Lionel Messi scored for the Catalans in quick succession to not only level the scores but also go one better. 

The scorer of the matchwinner, Lionel Messi, was fielded as a winger on Sunday instead of in the more usual deep-lying playmaker’s role. Coach Luis Enrique defended the move to shift his star man wider.

“It's for the good of the team, he has freedom to move,” Enrique said.

“We want him to touch the ball a lot."

Rafinha will be key player for Barca: Enrique

Luis Suarez was taken off in the second half of the match, with the Uruguay striker yet to regain his prolific touch. Enrique continued to provide stiff support to him however: "What does Suarez add? A lot. It's crucial to have someone to push back the centre backs. The goals will come, no doubt."

21-year-old Brazilian Rafinha, the scorer of Barcelona’s second, scored his first ever goal for the club, and turned in one of the best performances of the night. Enrique said of him: “He had a very complete game, like the others. This season, he needs to adapt a bit. No doubt he'll be a key player for Barca.”

About Andres Iniesta, the Barca captain of the day, Enrique said, “Iniesta is playing at best position now, more in centre, not as much from wing as before. I'm very happy with his performances." 

The result leaves Barcelona one point behind leaders Real Madrid at the top of La Liga, but Carlo Ancelotti's side have a game in hand. 

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