Man United win made Sociedad tough, says Barca's Jordi Alba
Jordi Alba felt Barcelona's midweek exertions against Manchester United took a toll after they claimed a workmanlike 2-1 LaLiga win over Real Sociedad.
Ernesto Valverde's side cruised to a 3-0 win over the Premier League giants to book a place in the Champions League semi-finals on Tuesday and Saturday's victory moved them closer to back-to-back LaLiga titles.
However, Barca needed Alba's 64th-minute winner as a swift response to Juanmi's equaliser for La Real after Clement Lenglet opened the scoring on the stroke of half-time.
"It was tough, especially after the effort against Manchester United, but we're on the right track," Spain left-back Alba said.
"I thought we were a little bit better in the second half than in the first. We are happy with the season, and I am happy with the goal."
Barca also have a Copa del Rey final against Valencia to come at the end of May and Alba did not dispute that the treble chase means Valverde has to sometimes take pragmatic approach to matches.
"I think the manager is dividing the minutes out really well among the different players, but we got the result which is the important thing," he said.
"We controlled the game and created more chances than they did. Real Sociedad are a serious team, always willing to take the game to you, we knew they would be like that.
"After the game we played the other day it made it a bit tough for us, but we won."
Alba added: "I think the team's responding really well, giving 100 per cent in every game. What the team wants is to be the champion of LaLiga.
"It seems easy because we have got a big lead, but you have to value the work we have done. Both players and the technical staff, and we also have to thank the fans who have supported us."