Upbeat Luis Enrique hails Barca resolve in PSG win
11 December 2014, 12:22
Barcelona - Barcelona coach Luis Enrique was delighted to have ended PSG's unbeaten run in all competitions this season despite being forced to adopt a new system in a landmark Champions League triumph for the Catalans.
Former Barcelona striker Zlatan Ibrahimovic put the French side ahead after 15 minutes on Wednesday before the home side turned the Group F decider around with goals from Lionel Messi, Neymar and Luis Suarez.
The victory ensured that Barca topped the standings on 15 points, two ahead of PSG, and set a new record of 13 group wins in the competition, one more than arch rivals Real Madrid.
It was still scrappy at times from Barca, though, who began with an unfamiliar three-man defence and PSG had a number of chances to add more goals, especially in the second half before Suarez struck on 77 minutes to seal victory for the hosts.
"Was the new system a risk? Well it depends on the result, whatever happens whether it is good or bad depends on the result," Luis Enrique told reporters.
"We were without a key player in (suspended fullback) Dani Alves and we went out with a game plan to cause problems for an opponent that defended deeply and looked to counter-attack.
"It was made even more complicated by the fact they scored first but we turned the game around with some good football. We played the system that we thought would do the most damage.
"We created chances and beat a strong side to finish top of the group, so it was a good night for us."
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PSG coach Laurent Blanc felt that Barca's system, which also saw them start with Pedro and Neymar on the wings, actually helped the French team.
"We obviously expected Barca to play a certain way and I don't think the defeat was caused because Barca were so dangerous but more by our own mistakes in defence and attack," Blanc admitted.
"I actually think that their style caused problems for themselves rather than us. There was a lot of space between the three players at the back which we could have exploited more.
"We had chances to equalise but we didn't quite manage it and when you are up against players like Messi, Neymar and (Andres) Iniesta, they will punish you."