MX23RW : Sunday, November 17 16:06:42| >> :600:67730635:67730635:
Sep 23, 2017 at 7.45pm UK at ​Montilivi, Girona
Attendance: 13,305
FT(HT: 0-1)
Benitez (17' og.), Iraizoz (48' og.), Suarez (69')

Ernesto Valverde: 'Lionel Messi man-marking effort helped Barcelona'

Ernesto Valverde believes that Pablo Maffeo's man-marking of Lionel Messi in Barcelona's 3-0 win over Girona helped the rest of the Blaugrana team out.

Ernesto Valverde has claimed that Girona's man-marking of Lionel Messi in Barcelona's 3-0 win at the Estadi Montilivi helped the rest of the team.

Pablo Maffeo, on loan from Manchester City, stifled Messi in an impressive man-marking effort, stopping the 30-year-old from adding to his nine league goals of the campaign.

However, the Blaugrana still emerged triumphant, with Luis Suarez's strike and own goals from Francisco Aday and Gorka Iraizoz giving the visitors their sixth consecutive league win of the new season.

"The man-marking was clear and we had to find the place where to put Messi to move that player (Maffeo) and to get the most out of the situation," Valverde told reporters after the game.

"You have to take advantage of the situation. We tried to get the better of them by playing in the space and taking advantage of Leo's movement.

"I think Messi was fine. It's true that when you're man-marked it can be uncomfortable, but it also has advantages, not for him, but for the team. I think he was relaxed about it all.

"It was a difficult game because it was a derby, because of the atmosphere and the tension, but I think we managed it well. Maybe we struggled to finish the game off, but we've got the win."

Up next for Barca is a Champions League trip to the Estadio Jose Alvalade on Wednesday night to face Portuguese giants Sporting Lisbon.

body check tags ::

Click here for more stories about Luis Suarez

Click here for more stories about Barcelona

Share this article now:
Instagram - Follow Sports Mole
Athletic Bilbao's coach Ernesto Valverde looks on during the Spanish league football match FC Barcelona vs Athletic Club Bilbao at the Camp Nou stadium in Barcelona on April 20, 2014
Read Next:
Valverde hails "excellent" Barcelona spirit

2Leicester CityLeicester128222982126
4Manchester CityMan City1281335132225
5Sheffield UnitedSheff Utd12453139417
7Manchester UnitedMan Utd124441612416
8Wolverhampton WanderersWolves123721615116
11Brighton & Hove AlbionBrighton124351517-215
12Crystal Palace124351016-615
13Newcastle UnitedNewcastle124351118-715
14Tottenham HotspurSpurs123541817114
16West Ham UnitedWest Ham123451420-613
17Aston Villa123271720-311
20Norwich CityNorwich122191128-177

Subscribe to our Newsletter

Transfer Talk Daily
Match previews - twice weekly
Morning Briefing (7am UTC)
Ultra close-up image of Kevin De Bruyne [NOT FOR USE IN ARTICLES]Get the latest transfer news, match previews and news direct to your inbox!