Madrid: FC Barcelona enjoyed an easy 2-0 win at home to Deportivo la Coruna to prepare for their Champions League clash at home to AC Milan Tuesday.
However, if anyone was looking for signs that Barca have recovered from a recent slump in form will be disappointed by a dull game where Barca dominated the first half against a side content to not receive a heavy defeat, reports Xinhua.
The second period was a tedious affair Saturday in which Barca looked way below their best but which was redeemed by a fine last minute goal from Lionel Messi.
A quick look at the Barca side made it clear that coach Jordi Roura had one eye focused on the Milan game.
Xavi Hernandez was not in the side as he struggles to recover from a hamstring injury. But the big news was that Messi was on the subs` bench as the striker was given rest.
Gerard Pique was also rested along with Andres Iniesta and Sergio Busquets but there were places for David Villa, Alexis Sanchez and Alex Song in the side.
Deportivo had problems of their own and the side that is bottom of the table were without their top scorer Riki.
Despite the unfamiliar looking starting 11, Barca were soon in control and although their play lacked the sharpness, the chances soon began to add up against an organised rival, that was lacking pace in key parts of the pitch.
It is not pleasant at all that I had to approach the court but there was no option left for me. I am glad that I have been proved right and it has lifted my morale ahead for the Asian Games.
Manoj Kumar, Indian boxer