Neymar subbed for own safety

2015-01-29 07:58
Neymar (Supplied)

Madrid - Barcelona boss Luis Enrique said he had to substitute two-goal star Neymar to prevent the Brazilian from being injured as his side's Copa del Rey quarter-final, second leg with Atletico Madrid turned nasty.

The Catalans went through 4-2 on aggregate after coming from behind twice to win 3-2 on the night as Atletico were reduced to nine men and were lucky not to be more harshly punished when Arda Turan was only booked for throwing his boot at an assistant referee.

"The moment arrived when the game had got ugly and we took off Neymar so it didn't get any more heated," said Enrique.

"Players ought to be intelligent and know that they are fellow professionals."

Neymar had already put Atletico's hopes of reaching the last four to the sword well before he was replaced by Pedro Rodriguez 13 minutes from time.

"Neymar showed the attitude he always does. He is a player with a lot of confidence and helps us all in all phases of the game. Today he was outstanding," added Enrique.

Read more on:    barcelona  |  la liga  |  neymar  |  soccer

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