Barcelona manager Xavi sends stern message to squad ahead of must win UCL game against Inter Milan

Barcelona manager Xavi Hernandez looks on.
Barcelona manager Xavi Hernandez looks on.

Barcelona boss Xavi Hernandez has urged his side to be self-critical and look to improve ahead of their match against Inter Milan.

The Blaugrana will host the Nerazzurri at the Spotify Camp Nou in a must-win UEFA Champions League encounter on Wednesday (October 12). Should they fail to win, Xavi's side will face an almighty struggle to qualify for the knockouts.

They will enter the match against Inter following a 1-0 victory against Celta Vigo in La Liga on Sunday (October 9). Barcelona eventually ended up with all three points, but ceded way too many opportunities to Celta and were lucky to keep hold of their clean sheet.

Speaking after the match, Xavi issued a stern message to his troops and said (via Sport as quoted by Barca Blaugranes):

“It’s a huge win but we have to be the team of the first 30 minutes moving forward. If we play like we played in the second half today, it will be difficult to beat Inter.”

The Barcelona manager continued:

“We have to improve, we have to be self-critical. The first half is good, the intensity was good, we created a lot of chances and have to kill the game off. If we get the second, it all changes.”
Xavi sends Barcelona warning ahead of must-win Inter game…

Xavi concluded:

“We were not good in the second half. We let Celta press. Maybe it was tiredness, fatigue. Psychologically we dipped and they had two or three clear chances on the counter.”

Barcelona return to the top of La Liga with win over Celta Vigo

Barcelona entered their home match against Celta Vigo as the leading scorers in La Liga with 19 goals in seven matches. However, the visitors managed to stifle their more-fancied opponents for much of the contest.

The Catalan giants were bright to start the contest, with Raphinha and Ferran Torres forcing a couple of good saves from Agustin Marchesin early on. They eventually took the lead in the 17th minute after Unai Nunez's error left Pedri Gonzalez with a tap-in from just a few yards out.

Xavi Hernandez's side were in control for much of the first half, but Celta were the better side after the break as the hosts' defense was stretched time and again. Gerard Pique made a crucial goal-line block while Marc-Andre ter Stegen was forced into a couple of good saves. Celta also had a goal ruled out for offside.

Barcelona will hope for a more thorough performance against Inter Milan. Otherwise, a repeat of the 1-0 defeat they suffered against the Nerazzurri at the San Siro last week could be on the cards.

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Edited by Anantaajith Ra
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