By 90Min
April 30, 2018

Ernesto Valverde admitted a sense of relief as a 4-2 win over Deportivo La Coruna on Sunday evening crowned the Catalans La Liga champions for the 25th time.

A stunning opening strike courtesy of Philippe Coutinho and a Lionel Messi hat-trick were enough to see off a dogged Depor, who themselves had relegation confirmed with the defeat. 


The victory secured Barca's seventh league title in 10 years and also saw Blaugrana wrap up the eighth domestic double in their history after blowing away Sevilla 5-0 in the Copa del Rey final last weekend. 

However, despite getting his hands on his first-ever Spanish league crown, Valverde told ESPN post-match he was merely glad the race was over. 

"When you're chasing something for the whole season, it's more a feeling of 'finally' when you eventually get there," he said. "At the end of the day, the league is such a long competition. 

"You have to make sure you get through autumn, through the tough winter [...] and we have come through it all. We have got there with room to spare. I think we have been the best team."

Barcelona's domestic dominance has been tainted somewhat by their exit of the Champions League at the hands of Roma; where they surrendered a three-goal advantage to crash out of the competition, although, Valverde gives more credit to success in the league than any other.

"For me, La Liga is the most difficult competition to win," he stated. "In the Copa and in the Champions League, one bad day can knock you out. But the league is a constant over many months, and you need to have resolve and determination.

"Because of how we were knocked out [of Europe], it marked us a little bit. It was unexpected. It's difficult to do what we have done [domestically], but as we want to win everything, there's always a but."

The 54-year-old also praised vital parts of his squad's constant winning mentality, with this the ninth league title won by Messi and Andres Iniesta and the seventh by Gerard Pique and Sergio Busquets.

"The most difficult thing is to keep winning," the coach added. "Everyone has moments when they win once. The hardest thing is to keep on winning and winning and winning.

"Having to re-motivate yourself and staying at the top is the toughest thing in any sport. As Valero Rivera said: 'The difficult thing is not winning, it is winning again.'"

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