Ernesto Valverde has defended his decision to rest Lionel Messi in the match against Sevilla.
The Blaugrana were beaten by Sevilla by 2-0 in the first leg of the Copa Del Rey quarter-final.
Barcelona manager Ernesto Valverde has said that he was right to rest Messi in the Copa Del Rey quarter-final match against Sevilla as the Blaugrana were beaten by the hosts in the first leg by 2-0. The manager started with new signing Kevin Prince Boateng and Malcom, both of whom failed to make an impact in the match and later brought on Philippe Coutinho and Luis Suarez from the bench. Messi, however, remained unused as the defending champions went down by two goals in the first leg.
Speaking to the media after the match, the Spanish gaffer said, “I do not regret it. It is what I had to do.”
When asked whether he would go in with a stronger lineup in the return leg, Valverde said, “We have to wait. Today I made changes. I thought it was the best and when you change, you know that you risk.”
He added, “And when you win you’re right and when you lose you’re not. There is an important game on Sunday that we want to win and we will think about the return.”