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Xavi complains after first El Clasico loss as manager, ‘Barca also deserved to go through to the final’

FC Barcelona manager Xavi Hernandez has had his first taste of defeat in “El Clasico” as a manager. His team lost 2-3 against bitter rivals Real Madrid on Wednesday, in their semi-final encounter at the Supercopa de Espana which is currently being staged in Saudi Arabia.

Barcelona were always catching up throughout the match, with Real Madrid scoring first via Brazilian forward Vinicius Junior in the 25th minute. Luuk de Jong managed to find the equaliser in the 41st minute, before Karim Benzema handed Los Blancos the lead once more in the 72nd minute via a brilliant exchange with Dani Carvajal.

Despite this, Xavi has decided to focus on the positive things that he saw in his team. “We were superior to Real Madrid in many moments. We can’t have high morale because we lost, [but] it’s a very important turning point,” he said after the match.

The Blaugrana were able to force the match into extra time thanks to a late goal by returning forward Ansu Fati, who is finally back in action after yet another lengthy injury. Xavi felt that his players had clear chances to equalise even after Fede Valverde scored Real Madrid’s third goal.

“We dominated many phases, we played with some complexes. Because of our mistakes of not stopping counterattacks, which we had discussed, they took advantage of our mistakes,” he said, as quoted by Marca.