“He came to talk to me, he felt very bad about what happened”: Barcelona coach Quique Setien refuses to blame Ansu Fati after the teenager was sent away because of a high shoe in the victory over Espanyol
- Barcelona defeated Espanyol to maintain the title chances despite Fati’s red card
- The 17-year-old was fired early in the second half after a VAR referral
- But Barcelona coach Quique Setien declined to blame the youngster for the red
- Setien said that Fati was trying to pull his leg off the challenge for the impact
- Luis Suarez scored the Barcelona winner to move them within one point of Real
Barcelona coach Quique Setien has refused to criticize young Ansu Fati after his red card in Wednesday night’s 1-0 win over Espanyol.
17-year-old Fati had only just started as a substitute for the second half when a VAR review upgraded a first yellow card to a red after his high foot caught Fernando Calero.
Barcelona eventually won thanks to Luis Suarez’s goal and kept the LaLiga title race alive with Real Madrid.
Ansu Fati receives a red card minutes after winning Barcelona’s win over Espanyol
The youngster’s original yellow card was upgraded by referee Jose Luis Munuera Montero after checking the VAR reruns
Just three minutes after Fati’s red card was canceled when Espanyol’s Pol Lozano was also fired.
Afterwards, Setien said he sympathized with Fati, who has been one of the rising stars of what was an up and down season for Barca.
“He was very humble after that. He came to talk to me. He was very sorry about what had happened, ”said Fati.
“He was not provoked. He went in to win the ball. After I saw it, the challenge looked more difficult than it actually was.
“It is a moment that could have been avoided. When he went in to win the ball, I saw that he was trying to fold his leg back so that there would be no contact, but the decision was made.
“He’ll be affected by this and we’ll see what the punishment is, but it’s a moment I don’t blame him for.”
Barcelona coach Quique Setien declined to blame Fati for the red card after their 1-0 win
Luckily for Fati and Setien, Barcelona was unaffected by playing with 10 men, and Suarez scored six minutes after the layoff to bring them back to a run by leaders Real, who hosted Alaves on Friday night.
Suarez’s match winner, a low shot past Espanyol goalkeeper Diego Lopez after Lionel Messi’s shot was blocked, made him the club’s all-time top scorer with 195 goals.
Only Messi (630) and Cesar (232) scored more than the Uruguayan, who signed from Liverpool in 2014.
Luis Suarez scored the only goal of the game for the hostess and took three points
Setien said, “It was not hard to figure out that Luis Suarez would eventually score goals again while continuing to play matches.
“If you don’t play for a while, you need time to get back into your rhythm. That’s something you only get on the field by minutes.
“He knows how to score goals and he has always shown that during his career. He did it, which takes him to third place in Barcelona’s all-time scoreboard and you can’t deny him that. ‘