- Title: Injury-free at last, Messi dazzles in Barca win
- Date: 3rd October 2019
- Summary: BARCELONA, SPAIN (OCTOBER 2, 2019) (REUTERS) INTER MILAN MANAGER ANTONIO CONTE ENTERING NEWS CONFERENCE AND SITTING DOWN (SOUNDBITE) (Italian) INTER MILAN MANAGER ANTONIO CONTE, SAYING: "It's a shame, it's a shame because I think for what we did, and what we produced, from what we saw and what we created, we deserved much more than Barcelona. Having said this, congratulations to Barcelona, in the end, the game of the champions shifted the equilibrium, and it's a shame." NEWS CONFERENCE IN PROGRESS (SOUNDBITE) (Italian) INTER MILAN MANAGER ANTONIO CONTE, SAYING: "On the one hand, there is a half filled glass for what we demonstrated and our personality. On the other hand, there is a half empty glass with a defeat, zero points in the competition. And this really annoys me and has to really annoy the players, because if we come back and we are happy, this is not the type of mentality that I want to bring and transmit to my guys. But I repeat, it's ok, it's ok to come to Camp Nou and lose, but it's a shame that we lost in this way." NEWS CONFERENCE IN PROGRESS (SOUNDBITE) (Italian) INTER MILAN MANAGER ANTONIO CONTE, SAYING: "I am saying, I am not taking the alibi of the referee, but I am saying that there I felt an uncomfortable feeling since the beginning because I saw certain directed situations. Maybe I am wrong, maybe I am wrong, but we are talking about a referee that did the last Champions League, we are talking about a top referee. I think that when you come to Camp Nou, it's Camp Nou." JOURNALIST TYPING INTO LAPTOP CONTE LEAVING NEWS CONFERENCE BARCELONA COACH ERNESTO VALVERDE ENTERING NEWS CONFERENCE (SOUNDBITE) (Spanish) BARCELONA COACH ERNESTO VALVERDE, ON MESSI, SAYING: "Well, it is the first match he plays fully. Moreover a game with an important physical demand, because of the rival and the competition, and of course, as the minutes went by he tired. The point is that a player of his calibre can complete the game even when tired, as he was at the end. And well, it's what happened, he didn't do a pre-season like the others did. He was injured, he has to recuperate through playing matches." NEWS CONFERENCE IN PROGRESS (SOUNDBITE) (Spanish) BARCELONA COACH ERNESTO VALVERDE, ON INTER MILAN, SAYING: "A super team. It seemed to me an extraordinary team, looking at what they're doing in the league, it's in line with that we were expecting, considering the coach they have, he is a great coach, and they have great players. They still have a chance in the Champions League and their own League. I thought it was a great game, we highly value the result, especially considering the rival we faced." VALVERDE LEAVING NEWS CONFERENCE
- Embargoed: 17th October 2019 00:54
- Keywords: Champions League Group D Barcelona Internazionale Inter Milan Ernesto Valverde Antonio Conte
- Location: BARCELONA, SPAIN
- City: BARCELONA, SPAIN
- Country: Spain
- Topics: Soccer,Sport
- Reuters ID: LVA002AZEO75R
- Aspect Ratio: 16:9
- Story Text: Lionel Messi and Luis Suarez led Barcelona to a 2-1 comeback win over Inter Milan in the Champions League on Wednesday (October 2) and inflict a first defeat on Antonio Conte since he took charge of the Italians.
Inter, who lead Serie A after winning all six domestic games under Conte, produced a wonderful first-half display and took the lead in the second minute through Argentine forward Lautaro Martinez.
Barca had struggled to get going but looked more like their usual dominant selves on European nights at the Camp Nou after the break and deservedly pulled level in the 58th minute through a superb swivelling volley from Suarez.
The Catalans caught Inter out on the counter-attack to take the lead in the 84th minute, with captain Lionel Messi feeding Suarez who produced a cool low finish to prompt relieved celebrations among the 86,000 fans in the stadium.
Messi said he was delighted to have finally had a full game under his belt, saying he needed to get more accustomed to the rhythm of the games. The Argentine played down rumours of a rift between him and the club's big summer signing Antoine Griezmann.
Meanwhile Conte rued his side's missed opportunities to extend their lead when they were the more dominant side in the first half. The tactician felt his side deserved more from the game and wanted his players to feel bitter disappointment at letting Barcelona back into the game when they had looked so comfortable early on.
Conte said refereeing decisions played a large outcome in the game, Inter felt they could have had a penalty when Stefano Sensi fell in the box with light contact as the team was still winning 1-0, potentially giving them an opportunity to kill the game.
Barca coach Ernesto Valverde praised Messi's performance and praised the visiting team for their plucky performance.
The win put Barca second in Group F with four points from two games, the same as leaders Borussia Dortmund who won 2-0 at Slavia Prague. Inter have one point.
(Production: Jordi Rubio, May Ponzo)
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