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Barcelona coach Enrique looks for further improvement

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Barcelona, April 22 (IANS) Spanish football club Barcelona coach Luis Enrique watched his side cruise into the Champions League semi-finals for the eighth time in 10 years with a 5-1 aggregate win over Paris Saint-Germain but still hopes for his side’s improvement.

Barcelona cruised home 2-0 on Tuesday night against the French side, thanks to two goals from Neymar to take their place in the last four, reports Xinhua.

“I can’t say the best is yet to come but that is our hope and that is why the players have worked so hard since pre-season; so they can compete for all of the titles,” said Enrique whose side are leaders in La Liga and will play the final of the Spanish Cup against Athletic Club Bilbao in their own Camp Nou.

“The league is still very hard because there are rivals fighting to win it and in the Champions League there are three sides with the same chances. In the Cup final we face a rival who always give us problems,” he added, saying that eight semis in 10 years showed that “the level this club is at and the players we have got and the importance we have in Europe”.

Enrique commented that having reached the semi-final, “settling for that would be very poor and the logical thing now is to think about getting to the final”.

While Barcelona will have to wait until Wednesday’s two remaining quarter-finals are completed to know their rivals in the last four, Bayern Munich’s 6-1 destruction of Porto does throw up the chance of former coach Pep Guardiola making an emotional return to face his former club.

“We will face the side we’re drawn to play,” said Enrique, who was nevertheless “happy” for Guardiola, who was first team boss at Barcelona when he was in-charge of the B-team.

“I am pleased he qualified because I am happy when good things happen to my friends. A lot of people thought he was finished and they (Bayern) scored six goals with a lot of players out. That shows how good he is as a coach and how good they are as a team but we will have to wait for the draw.”

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