Valencia CF17 May 2024

Baraja: "It was excessive punishment to lose"

The Valencia CF coach talks after the defeat in San Sebastian

Valencia CF coach Rubén Baraja spoke to the media after his side's 1-0 loss to Real Sociedad in LaLiga.

The final stretch of the season

“In the end, it's what happens when you surpass by far your initial goal for the season and you have good momentum. Before we started in this negative dynamic you asked me what we had to do to be at the top fighting for Europe. 

In the end, it is about getting points, winning a lot and not getting into a bad run. When you face direct rivals, such as Real Betis or Real Sociedad, you have to be able to compete with them and beat them to be able to be in those privileged positions. We have not lost to just any team. We lost against a great team. The start wasn't good for us. 

We have insisted on starting well, but sometimes football doesn't help you out with those kinds of things. In the second half, the team had a great response, they were in the game, we had chances, but in the end, finishing is the difference. It was excessive punishment in today's game to lose, and in other games in which we have been able to win, we have not achieved it. This is the reality and we have to accept it.”

Future objectives.

“The starting point is important. The objective was to improve on last season, and we must not forget what a bad time we had. This season we have achieved the objective ahead of time and we have been building something new, different, with young players. Those of us who know Valencia CF and are Valencianistas want to be in the privileged positions in the table, but that will depend on the budget, on what is talked about for the future. 

This is what establishes everything for you. It's the difference maker.  At this moment the economic difference is what sets the objectives and we are going through a very difficult journey to experience when you are from Valencia and you have seen what you have seen at Valencia CF. But we have to accept it, live with it and also try to internalise it because if there is something we have achieved this season, it is making our fans understand the moment of difficulty the club are in. 

Now we are going to see what happens ahead of next season. We cannot want something without having the predisposition or possibility to get it. We have to be sincere in that sense and with the tools and weapons we have, try to give our best, which is what I believe we have done this season. We have been building during this time with very young players, who have an important future ahead of them, and this is what we are going to continue working on.”

The season as a whole

“I would have liked to have won today, but when we had the opportunities to equalise, we didn't take them. We had the best chance from that double action which we didn't put away. The other day the same thing happened to Yaremchuk, but this is the difference in football. Real Sociedad, however, off a ball to the far post, had Kubo return it and they scored a goal.

 This is football and the difference in football is scoring goals. I understand that people might get frustrated, but in the second half, with the way the team competed and what we have been seeing throughout the season, sincerely, as a Valencia CF fan, I would identify with my players, with my team, with what I have seen during the season. We all want more, that's obvious, but we also have to know how to live with our reality.”


“We have had demand. This entire group of players, all the people around the first team, have given their all. I have seen amazing commitment in every sense and tremendous effort. Today, in the end, we must not ignore things: We had two players who normally would have been playing and could not be there today, in Pepelu and Hugo Duro. Gayà is coming off a long injury, Jesús Vázquez was out, Fran was also out and the team came here to play against Real Sociedad, who are a great team, and competed. At times we were also able to tie the game. We competed to the best of our abilities. This is what comforts me.”


“The positive we can take is that, playing these types of games against great teams, on grand stages, our players gain experience and then know how to play and win. This is the difference for teams that remain in the elite for a long time. When that moment arrived in which we had to compete against Real Sociedad, Betis, FC Barcelona... we did a lot of things well, but they were decided by details. I

If you evaluate them all, then you realise that winning is very difficult and that if you don't get into a points-scoring rhythm, you can't be fighting with the best. Giving our all, we haven't been able to continue getting points to be up there. Throughout the season we have been at the limit of our possibilities and that leaves me calm about what we had proposed at the beginning of the season"

Copyright 2013-2024 Valencia CF. The use of the editorial content of the article is permitted as long as the source gets the credit and contains the following link: Photographs by Lázaro de la Peña, reuse is not permitted.

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