La Liga: Coach Ernesto Valverde says Barcelona win was vital to help lift spirits in Catalan capital after attack

'Today was a special day in many ways,' said Barcelona coach Ernesto Valverde after his first league match in charge of the Spanish giants.

AFP August 21, 2017 11:28:50 IST
La Liga: Coach Ernesto Valverde says Barcelona win was vital to help lift spirits in Catalan capital after attack

Barcelona: Barcelona coach Ernesto Valverde conceded it was vital for his side to help lift spirits in the Catalan capital by beating Real Betis 2-0 in their La Liga opener on Sunday.

Twin terrorist attacks on Thursday killed 14 people and wounded around 120 in Barcelona's bustling Las Ramblas thoroughfare and the nearby seaside resort of Cambrils.

La Liga Coach Ernesto Valverde says Barcelona win was vital to help lift spirits in Catalan capital after attack

File image of Barcelona coach Ernesto Valverde. Reuters

"Today was a special day in many ways," Valverde said after his first league match in charge of the Spanish giants.

"We started La Liga, but we are aware of the importance of the events that took place this week in Barcelona and Cambrils."

An emotional day at the Camp Nou was filled with tributes to those killed and injured in the most deadly terror attack on Spanish soil in 13 years.

A minute's silence was held before kick-off, whilst Barcelona players wore black armbands and shirts with 'Barcelona' replacing individual names on the back.

On the field, Valverde's reign got off to a difficult start with a 5-1 aggregate thrashing in the Spanish Super Cup at the hands of rivals Real Madrid.

However, despite the absence of the injured Luis Suarez and Andres Iniesta, captain Lionel Messi inspired Barca to a comfortable win thanks to an Alin Tosca own goal and midfielder Sergi Roberto's first La Liga goal.

"We know of the solidarity that has risen up not just here, but in all parts of the city," added Valverde.

"We couldn't let that down. I said yesterday our idea was to move forward, to give a feeling of normality.

"At the same time we wanted to honour all the victims of the attacks, albeit in our own way, by winning the game, and we will continue to think of them and our life here in Barcelona."

Updated Date:

also read

'It is beyond a dream', India striker Sunil Chhetri reminisces on completing 16 years in international football
Sports

'It is beyond a dream', India striker Sunil Chhetri reminisces on completing 16 years in international football

It was on this day, 16 years ago that Chhetri donned the India jersey for the first time, in a match against Pakistan in Quetta under then head coach Sukhwinder Singh.

European Super League: Six rebel teams reach £22 million financial settlement with Premier League
Sports

European Super League: Six rebel teams reach £22 million financial settlement with Premier League

Arsenal, Chelsea, Liverpool, Manchester City, Manchester United and Tottenham face a £25 million fine and 30-point deduction if there are further attempts to break away.

Copa America 2021: Lionel Messi scores but Argentina left frustrated after draw with Chile
Sports

Copa America 2021: Lionel Messi scores but Argentina left frustrated after draw with Chile

Messi's magical left foot gave dominant Argentina a deserved first half lead but Chile's Eduardo Vargas equalized in the second half.