26th May, 2019
The unexpected loss of the 2019 Copa Del Rey final match by Barcelona has been generating some serious reactions across the football world. And not just among fans but also some players. Gerard Pique is one of those that has come forward with his own opinion.
The central defender has come out to say that Barcelona’s season felt bittersweet after it was concluded with a surprise 2-1 Copa del Rey final defeat to Valencia on Saturday.
Valencia who shared a pair of draws with the champions in LaLiga this term and drawing inspiration from those games, confidently attacked their more famous opponents and deservedly led 2-0 at the interval through goals from Kevin Gameiro and Rodrigo Moreno.
It is of note that Pique completed a remarkable goal-line clearance to deny Gameiro and, although Barca eventually got into their stride, captain Lionel Messi’s 73rd-minute finish from close range was all they had to show for their efforts.
Barcelona surprisingly lost this game despite virtually strolling unto an eighth title in 11 seasons in Spain’s top flight. This also coming close on the heels of their stunning Champions League semi-final elimination at the hands of Liverpool.
The Barca central defender had the following to say;
“It was a good year because the league was won, but the expectations a few weeks ago were to make a much better year,” Pique told reporters.
“We leave with that bittersweet taste that the season could have been much better.”
However, the result is likely to invite further scrutiny for head coach Ernesto Valverde.
Commenting on the likelihood of such a scenario, Pique reiterated that the former Athletic Bilbao boss retains dressing room backing but added Valverde’s fate is not in the hands of the players. He went further to say;
“The future of the coach does not worry us, we have to do an individual and collective analysis,” he said.
“We have already said that we would like the coach to continue because he has done a great job, but they are decisions that are not in our hands.
“We have a long summer to analyse what can be done better.”