Guardiola content despite end of winning run
Barcelona coach Pep Guardiola remained in upbeat mood despite seeing his team's winning streak come to an end at Real Betis.
Barca went into the clash at the Estadio Manuel Ruiz de Lopera having won 10 successive games in La Liga but they had to settle for a point after playing out a 2-2 draw.
It could have been much worse for the runaway leaders though as they trailed 2-0 after just 25 minutes and were indebted to a brace from Samuel Eto'o, whose equaliser came six minutes from the end, for salvage something from the match.
Guardiola said: "We came to win and it didn't happen, but there are no reproaches. We cannot say that we didn't fight and that we didn't put the effort in. We battled throughout and created many chances.
"When a team have performed the way Barca have you cannot reproach them at all. I'm very satisfied. I worry if we slip up when we've played badly, but I don't have this feeling.
"I think we dominated the game. I would have liked like to have won, but it is what it is. We picked up a point."
The draw means Barca's lead at the summit can now be trimmed back to 10 points if Real Madrid beat Sporting Gijon away this evening.
"There are still 15 games to play, a lot of the league ahead. We've been saying this for a long time, you have to continue forward and take it step by step," Guardiola added.
He also had words of praise for Betis, who despite spending big over the last six months find themselves worryingly close to the relegation zone.
Last weekend's win derby win over Sevilla and the draw against Barca have left Paco Chaparro's side six points above the bottom three ahead of today's matches and Guardiola envisages no problems for the Seville-based outfit come the end of the campaign.
"I want to congratulate Betis for the game they played, I expected our opponents to play like that," Guardiola said.
"It was an entertaining game and the fans will have enjoyed it. We faced a great team, made up of very good players. We expect to see them safe at the end of the season."