Xavi talks Frenkie, Balde, Gavi after the 1-0 win against Athletic Club

Photo by Cesar Ortiz / Pressinphoto / Icon Sport

Xavi spoke about the handball incident, the atmosphere in San Mamés, Balde’s performance, defensive solidity, and the missed chances in his post-match press conference after the 1-0 win against Athletic Club.

Xavi on the defensive contributions of the players:

“We’ve won many games by 1-0, so this is where the defensive solidity comes in. I’m proud of how this team is competing. Today, 10 players came running back from a corner in 3 seconds. This is embodied in players like Gavi. I’m excited because it’s tough to achieve this.”

Xavi on the handball incident:

“At first I didn’t see the handball, but then they let me know that the VAR is checking and I see it clearly on the monitor.”

Xavi on his game plan against Athletic Club:

“We have to be able to find the free man. Today, it was Gavi coming from the left. We need to have more patience and be more calm. We’re having the same problem in every match.”

Xavi on the hostile atmosphere in San Mamés:

“I’m sad with the hostile atmosphere in San Mamés today. They’ve always treated Barcelona and me very well here.”

Xavi on Frenkie de Jong:

“De Jong is playing at a spectacular level. He’s one of the best midfielders in the world right now.”

Xavi on Alejandro Balde:

“Alejandro Balde’s potential is immense, to build a long career here at Barcelona. He’s the biggest surprise and revelation of this season. He’s at a very high level and he’s maturing even more.”

Xavi on missed opportunities:

“We have many things to improve regarding the offensive aspect of the game. We had 2 or 3 chances to score another goal. I remember one by Ansu…”

Xavi on the win against Athletic Club:

“This is a golden victory for us and golden three points. We played well for 70-80 minutes, but in a stadium like this, it’s normal if we suffer at the end. They press a lot.”

Xavi on the reaction of fans on the Negreira case:

“People are making conclusions about the Negreira case early on, which saddens me. That’s all that I have to say.”

Xavi on the dressing room’s reaction to the Negreira case:

“In the dressing room, we haven’t talked about the Negreira case, or about whether we will be punished in Europe. We have to focus, we’re professionals. The president has already spoken.”

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