Luis Suarez believes Barcelona are not getting enough credit for their La Liga campaign due to their Champions League exit at the hands of Roma.
The Catalans made it a record-breaking 39 games without defeat in Spain's top flight in Saturday's 2-1 win over Valencia, a result that lifts them 14 points clear of second-placed Atletico Madrid, having played a game more.
The win was also something of a tonic after the criticism of their collapse in Europe on Wednesday, when they lost 3-0 at Roma to go out at the quarter-final stage on away goals.
Suarez, who opened the scoring before Samuel Umtiti's header sealed the win, says the reaction from some of the press and the fans makes it feel as though winning the domestic title almost does not matter.
"Statistics are there to be broken. We knew the fans could be angry, but we're hurting, too. It seems like there's no merit to winning the league, now," he told beIN SPORTS.
"We've tried to confirm the great league season we're having after the blow of the other day. We were able to get the three points, which is the most important thing.
"It's one more step to completing the objective. It's a good lead and we have to think about the game on Tuesday [against Celta Vigo].
"The most important thing was the 1-0, knowing the mood wasn't good, and we saw how it finished."
Meanwhile, it was another productive match for Suarez against Valencia.
The striker's goal Saturday was his 10th in all competitions against the club, which is more than he has scored against any club since joining the Catalans.
10 - @LuisSuarez9 has scored 10 goals versus Valencia in all comps more than against any other club since he joined @FCBarcelona. Comfortable. pic.twitter.com/xNk9pr2ixF — OptaJose (@OptaJose) April 14, 2018
Suarez's tally was set up by his old Liverpool team-mate Philippe Coutinho – the second time that has happened since Brazil international's move to Barcelona.
Interestingly, that equals the total number of assists Coutinho provided Suarez during their entire time together at Anfield.