Busquets hails Villa impact

13 March 2013 01:46

Midfielder Sergio Busquets hailed the impact of Barcelona teammate David Villa as the Catalans stormed into the quarter-finals of the Champions League with a 4-0 win over AC Milan on Tuesday night.

Villa scored the third goal just after half-time to put Barca ahead in the tie for the first time and it was a sweet moment for the Spanish international having endured a difficult time since breaking his tibia at the Club World Championships 15 months ago.

The 31-year-old returned to full fitness at the start of the season but has failed to find a regular place in the side and was even linked with a move away from the club in January.

However, his presence proved crucial in providing Lionel Messi with the space needed to put Barca 2-0 up at half-time before Villa himself and Jordi Alba rounded off a wonderful night for the hosts after the break.

"We felt comfortable. It always helps a lot to have Xavi and (Andres) Iniesta at your side. Leo was as he always is, but the position of David helped push the central defenders back a bit," Busquets told reporters

"A huge part of what we did well was down to David, he played in a position that was very important for us."

The result was even more remarkable given Barca's poor form of late.

Defeat in the first-leg at the San Siro had been followed by two defeats in five days to rivals Real Madrid and Busquets claimed this it was exactly the kind of match they needed to click back into gear.

"We needed a match like this not to shut people up but to do it for ourselves. We are professionals and we enjoy it.

"Almost all of us are from here (Barcelona) and we live the game in a very intense way.

"This will help us to gain confidence and to evaluate what we are capable of.

"We are the first ones to know what we can do, but now we cannot live in the past."

It was also the first time that this current generation of Barca players have managed to overturn a significant first-leg deficit in the Champions League and the Spanish international said it's a game that will live long in the memory.

"Until now we haven't had the luck to do it but I have always watched the great comebacks from Barca teams in the past.

"We are proud to have done something that will be remembered for many years to come."

Source: AFP