During a 2-2 tie in the Europa League at Camp Nou, Barcelona coach Xavi referred to Manchester United as one of Europe’s “best teams”, but he also noted that both teams are “coming back” from difficult periods.
The first leg of the Europa League quarterfinal playoff on Thursday night was a far cry from the Champions League finals in Rome in 2009 and London in 2011, when Barça and United faced off for the title of top team in Europe.
But despite that, this was still the best UEFA match of the week due to how well both sides have rebounded this season following their respective struggles. Additionally, the 2-2 draw that leaves the match in a precarious position before the second leg at Old Trafford didn’t let down.
After the game, Xavi told BT Sport, “That was a really challenging game, really demanding, with a lot of intensity, passion, and rhythm.” “I believe we should be proud of the way we competed right up until the very end. We had two chances to win, but we were up against a great European club.
“I believe that both teams are more or less in the same situation right now and that we are on the verge of a comeback. Congratulations, I told [Erik Ten Hag], as they play for Manchester United and he is doing so well.
“In the future, it might be a Champions League final, semifinal, or quarterfinal, but for now, we’re in the Europa League and we’re coming back. Today, both teams gave excellent performances and we gave our best effort.
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