Raphinha, Frenkie de Jong react after Real Betis 1-2 Barcelona: “A big step for us”
Barcelona stretched their lead atop the La Liga standings to eight points after they secured a 2-1 victory over Real Betis away from home at the Benito Villamarin on Wednesday night.
It was Raphinha who opened the scoring for the Catalan giants on the night, finding the back of the net a little after the hour mark. Robert Lewandowski, back after serving his three-match ban in La Liga, added another in the 80th minute.
And despite an unfortunate own goal from Jules Kounde, Barcelona were able to see through the contest and return with three points in the bag from a tricky venue.
Raphinha, whose future at Barça beyond the summer is being questioned, spoke to the media after his goal-scoring display vs Betis and said:
“The sensations are amazing. We are working hard and the by-product of our work is shown by the number of points we have.”
“We knew it’d be a difficult match and we knew we had to take our chances,” the Brazilian winger added. “I don’t think the match was in our favour. It was a very good match.”
Frenkie de Jong, who put in a fine display from midfield on Wednesday, also spoke to the media after the match and highlighted the importance of the victory.
“It was an important win,” the Dutchman said.
The midfielder sparked the move for the opening goal for Barça, with his quickly-taken free-kick that allowed Alejandro Balde to feed Raphinha the ball. On his role in the goal, de Jong said: “There’s still a lot that I have to work on.”
When quizzed if that was his best display as a Barcelona player, the Netherlands ace replied: “I’m not sure. When you play a good game people are quick to make these statements.”
Talking about the La Liga title race, de Jong added: “Today was a big step for us. There’s an eight-point difference between us and Real Madrid currently.”