Madrid: FC Barcelona coach Luis Enrique has said he did not know that star striker Lionel Messi had played in Saturday's Clasico match against Real Madrid after been given a pain-killing injection.
Barcelona lost 1-3 in the marquee clash with Messi being a peripheral figure in the match. Messi's subdued performance has been put down to the fact that he was physically below his best, but the coach said it was not his business to know whether a player needed an injection, reports Xinhua.
"If he needs an injection that is down to him and the doctor. I don't know if he had an injection, but he was in 100 percent condition to play the game," Enrique said.
"My advice to him is not to do it but medical questions are private for every player," he said.
Enrique did not believe his side's defeat was as clear as the result could make out.
"I would be worried if we had shown a problem in our attitude. But we had nine corners in our favour, while Real Madrid had only three," he said, before accepting that "in general terms, our rival played better".
One worrying factor for Barcelona was the defensive errors which played a part in every goal they conceded and Enrique said his side had, "produced clear errors" and "been below their usual level" of play.
"We said there would be some difficult moments and there will be more in the future, but we will also play a lot of better games," he said.
The coach insisted that while the discussions were ongoing in the press, among the Barcelona squad, "the period of mourning has passed for a game we all had high hopes for".
"If you can't get over a defeat you can't be a professional footballer and the squad is training at a good level. This is useful as it shows us we have to be smarter and we have to be more efficient in this kind of situation," he said.