Barcelona manager Xavi talks about Frankfurt crowd in Europa League loss
The Bundesliga side beat Barcelona 4-3 on aggregate in the quarterfinals of the Europa League last week. After a 1-1 draw in Germany in the first leg, Frankfurt shocked Barca 3-2 at Nou Camp in the reverse fixture. They will now take on West Ham United in the semifinals of the tournament.
Besides the result, what was even more shocking for Barca was the fact that the Frankfurt fans possibly outnumbered the home crowd at Camp Nou. The pictures of the Bundesliga fans taking over Barca’s home ground has since gone viral on the internet.
Xavi’s men crashed out of the Champions League in the first half of the season, which coerced them to participate in the Europa League in the first place. Having lost in the other domestic cup competitions and currently 15 points behind Real Madrid (although with two games in hand), the Europa League was Barca’s best chance to win a trophy this season.
Speaking about the Frankfurt fans taking over the Nou Camp, Barca boss Xavi Hernandez said that these incidents mentally affect the psyche of the players. He said (reported via Goal.com)
“The players did not feel like they were playing at home. It’s not an excuse, but the atmosphere conditioned us. We were not comfortable. I had a bad feeling from the first moment when we got on the bus at the hotel and we did not feel at home.”
“They were throwing everything at us, [the players] couldn’t even get down the tunnel. Then we gave a penalty away in the first minute. It was a fateful night in every sense, sporting and institutionally. It started badly and ended badly. You feel robbed in your own home.”
Xavi seemed less than pleased with the situation and demanded that the situation be explained to them.
“The club will give an explanation at some point — or at least find solutions so it does not happen again. It was the club’s mistake, for sure. When the club finds out what errors led to Thursday’s events, they will explain it to us.”
Barcelona worry as Bayern Munich push to sign Gavi
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Mundo Deportivo has reported that Bayern are keen to snap up Gavi before the player extends his contract at Barcelona.