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Feb, 27, 2013

Roura: Barcelona lacked 'wisdom'

Barcelona coach Jordi Roura has bemoaned his side's lack of "wisdom" as the Catalan club crashed out of the Copa del Rey semi-finals at home to arch-rivals Real Madrid on Wednesday.

• Hunter: Madrid dominate Barcelona
• Tomas: Flagging Barcelona stunned by Madrid

The two sides headed into the second leg at the Nou Camp locked at 1-1, but led by two-goal hero Cristiano Ronaldo, Madrid cruised to a 3-1 victory and advanced to the final with a 4-2 aggregate score, ending Barcelona's hopes of retaining its title.

But despite acknowledging Madrid's performance, Roura was left to rue what may have been, as his squad failed to stop the game-plan of its well-known enemy.

"In football you cannot always control things; it is a game of mistakes," Roura told reporters after the game. "Madrid are one of the best teams around on the break. This is thing we knew and we tried to control it but we lacked wisdom."

However, the 45-year-old stand-in for Tito Vilanova refused to blow the loss out of proportion, believing his team would quickly regain its focus as it looks to extend its lead in La Liga and bounce back against AC Milan in the Champions League.

Milan won the clubs' opening tie 2-0 in Italy.

"We've lost our Copa del Rey title, but our league situation is very favourable, he said. "In La Liga we have made a great effort. I do not think that this will affect us, perhaps this will give us peace of mind, because we have the league to focus on.

"We also have an important match against AC Milan. The Champions League and the league are major challenges that we'll fight for.

"When you are eliminated from a competition, players are sad, but still very competitive. We must recover."

Roura did admit his team was not at its physical best against Los Blancos, but quickly allayed fears his team's sluggish struggles would continue for the remainder of the season.

"It's true that our fitness has cycles and we have may reached a fair bit (of a slump)," he said. "But we knew we would find this game tough.

"But I do not think this game has (had much of an) effect on our game with Milan.

"Madrid play differently; Milan will be more conservative."

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