The Spanish boss cautions his charges against complacency, after having held on to eight-point lead over their opponenets
It was a bittersweet evening for Guardiola, for while his side were unable to take a victory back to Catalunya, but retained an eight-point advantage at the top of La Liga over their rivals.
Despite the fact that Barcelona remain in this near-unassailable position at the summit, Guardiola warned his players not to grow complacent after the game.
“We are not the Champions yet. We are only 8 points clear and there are still six games left," he told a press conference.
Pepe’s inclusion in midfield was signalled as a masterstroke from Jose Mourinho and Guardiola praised the Portuguese player's performance. The Barcelona coach said: “We expected something like this. Pepe is strong player, very experienced and has been very difficult [to beat].
“Seeing his qualities, we knew that he was going to play well so it didn’t come as a surprise to us.”
Guardiola was reluctant to speak about the refereeing decisions that played such a role in the match, as the Barcelona manager took a neutral stance by claiming that he “hadn’t seen anything.”
He was also intent on avoiding talking about Jose Mourinho’s absence from the press, saying when asked about it, "I have my own team to worry about. It is enough to care about my team."
He was able to assure Barca fans that the injury suffered to Carles Puyol, who was playing his first competitive game for three months, was not a recurrence of the same problem that had kept him out since January.
“It’s just a hamstring injury. He made a great effort tonight. I think it’s a small pull due to inactivity, the grass and the tension. We will need to assess it before the Copa Del Rey final,” he concluded.