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Valverde impressed by Cillessen’s save against Sporting CP

Despite winning 2-0 against Sporting CP, the Catalans boss admitted his team was far from its best.

Barcelona goalkeeper Jasper Cillesen received high praise from his manager after producing a vital save to help his team secure a 2-0 victory over Sporting CP in the Champions League.

Cillessen denied Bas Dost with an outstanding save following a cross from Bruno Fernandes. The save was in a key moment of the game since the Catalans just took the lead through Paco Alcacer and a goal from Sporting CP would have meant that things are back to level. However, the 28-year-old’s reflexes were on point and he prevented a goal for the Portuguese side.

“Cillessen has made an extraordinary stop,” Valverde told reporters as quoted by Goal. “They had the obligation to go for the victory, they waited for the time to pass and tried to beat us with the changes.

“Our idea is to dominate matches and generate scoring situations. At the same time, if the opponent does not give us chances, we try to do the best we can.

“Sometimes we are more brilliant, sometimes less.”

The Catalans were without their star player Lionel Messi for the start of the game, with Suarez and Vidal unable to cut through the opposition’s defense, which simply showed how reliant on Messi Barca have become.

“You always think that with him [Messi] things are going to get better,” added the former Athletic Bilbao manager.

“We know that Leo channels our attacking game, both because of his ability to finish, because of his ability to order and clarify the game, and find those passes that nobody sees.”