Barcelona began their new era without Lionel Messi after an emotional farewell, with their final pre-season game against Juventus in the Joan Gamper trophy match. The Blaugrana ran out as comfortable 3-0 victors to close out the off-season in style.
Cristiano Ronaldo and co had their fair share of opportunities, but were kept at bay thanks to goalkeeper Neto. Meanwhile, a clinical Barcelona display saw goals from Memphis Depay, Martin Braithwaite and a Riqui Puig stunner seal the win.
Coach Ronald Koeman seemed delighted with his side’s performance as we head into the final week before the beginning of the 2021-22 league season. Here are the Dutchman’s thoughts on all the events of yesterday.
On Messi’s exit: “I told the players that we can’t change what happened, we have to move forward and stay professional. We want the best for the club, we have to turn the page and accept, we have to show that we are a good team without Leo too.”
On the result: “I’m happy with the performance and the result against a team that is known for defending well.”
On Yusuf Demir: “Demir is a huge talent and is one of the important young players for the team.”
On Griezmann: “Griezmann has been excellent in his role today.”
On the post-Messi era: “We will always miss the best player in the world. We have to improve because we will not have the goals scored by Messi. We will give young players opportunities and we have new strikers like Memphis.”
On how to adapt without Leo: “The midfielders must score more goals, as a squad we must improve. We have to accept to do without Leo. All the players must give a little more. There is a future.”
On Aguero’s injury: “Agüero got injured in training in the morning and couldn’t come, he’s a player we have and count on.”
Source: Barça TV+