Clement Lenglet was the target of criticism after Barcelona were matched by Cadiz. Ronald Koeman thinks that Lenglet should not be the scapegoat.
Barcelona failed to reap the full points at home to Cadiz in the Spanish League continued at Camp Nou last weekend. Had a 1-0 lead until the final minutes, Barcelona finally had to be satisfied with the final 1-1 result.
Barcelona’s victory was shattered in the 88th minute after Cadiz scored a penalty from Alex Fernandez. The referee pointed to the spot following Lenglet’s foul on Sobrino.
Lenglet then received sharp criticism for his mistake. The French defender also received a lot of unpleasant comments on social media. Lenglet himself was seen crying in his car after the match.
Ronald Koeman admitted that Clement Lenglet was influenced by criticism and malicious comments on social media. However, Koeman did not deny that Lenglet needed to improve his performance.
“I spoke with Lenglet this morning. He is a serious person and a professional. He is very offended,” Koeman said in a press conference ahead of the match against Elche, as reported by ESPN.
“There are other things that happen in the match, one player is not to blame for the points lost. Yes, he could have been better, and he made mistakes (this season), but we also made mistakes in attacking through other players.”
“At 2-0, one incident in the last minute is not that determined. So he is not to blame. I will defend my players, even if there are things he has to improve, like all players,” said Koeman.
The draw against Cadiz made Barcelona even more scattered in the Spanish League standings. Lionel Messi et al are now in fourth place with 47 points, eight points behind Atletico Madrid who are at the top.