Luis Enrique disappointed by Barcelona display against Cypriots
Barcelona coach Luis Enrique conceded his team fell short of expectations as they opened their Champions League Group F campaign with a narrow 1-0 win over Apoel Nicosia.
The Catalan club wasted a number of chances at the Nou Camp, and Gerard Pique’s 28th-minute header was all that separated the two sides in the end.
Luis Enrique made nine changes to the side which beat Athletic Bilbao at the weekend to give Barca three wins out of three in the Primera Division this season.
However, the coach was not willing to make any excuses, admitting the performance simply was not good enough.
"We found it hard to make the right choices over the final metres," said Luis Enrique.
"We have great, quality players but we didn’t get through on goal for a variety of reasons. We weren’t at our best over the final metres. We weren’t moving the ball around fast enough.
"Perhaps our play was less fluid because of all the rotations, but I’m sticking to my guns. I need my whole team, although I’m sure I’ll get it wrong sometimes. We can’t always win 3-0 or 4-0, but I have blind faith in my players.
"We managers worry when things don’t go to plan. These aren’t easy games, Apoel played a serious game.
"We’ll be showing the players what they need to get better. We can’t settle for this, we have to play better. I am sure we can make even better players of the players we have."