"There were moments when we were really flying," said Xavi Hernández after FC Barcelona eliminated Manchester City FC, Daniel Alves emphasising their teamwork.
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FC Barcelona's players felt they had put two rivals to the sword on one evening of winning football: besides eliminating Manchester City FC in Wednesday's UEFA Champions League round of 16 second leg – 2-1 on the night, 4-1 on aggregate – they also responded to their mounting critics after some mixed domestic results.
Daniel Alves capped two fine performances with a second goal in the tie, but emphasised the teamwork that took them through while Xavi Hernández added: "There were moments tonight when we were really flying."
Xavi Hernández, Barcelona midfielder
This is a competition which makes us very proud and people should be happy we are in the quarter-finals once again after a really intelligent performance. In fact we've produced a great knockout performance against a great rival like City. Despite the 2-0 first-leg score, this was a really open tie and I think the public must have seen a pretty great spectacle.
City had chances to score, we had lots of opportunities too and we went all out to attack because we truly don't know another way of playing. This was the 'good' version of Barça and while it's obvious that you can always improve, there were moments tonight when we were really flying. People should be satisfied with us.
Daniel Alves, Barcelona defender
Barcelona always respond like a true great. We always want the best version of our team and our play but it can't always come off. [Me] scoring two goals across the tie is fine, really not bad! But over and above the goals, what will stick with me is the teamwork. That it was me who scored is irrelevant.
We are in the next round, we've played really competitively and when there's adversity, this group of players always responds. We may trip up now and again while we are marching forward but we'll stick to the right road. We know that nobody remembers the teams who make the knockout rounds – only the champions. That's what we want to be.