Barcelona coach Ernesto Valverde said fatigue was to blame as his unbeaten side failed to score for the first time this season in a goalless draw against Getafe at the Nou Camp on Sunday.
Barca failed to impress against their 10th placed opponents with a disallowed Luis Suarez effort and a late save by Getafe keeper Vicente Guaita from the same player the height of the excitement.
It was the La Liga leaders’ 12th game in 39 days and Valverde’s admitted that their busy schedule could have been to blame.
“We were lacking some freshness and rhythm, especially in the first half,” Valverde said afterwards.
“Getafe are a team who stop you from playing so you don’t get close to their box. As the game went on we attacked more and more and despite our best efforts it wasn’t to be. They defended their box well and we lacked a bit of spark.
“We have had a busy month and have just reached a final.
“We can’t win every game we play or be 100 percent all the time and this is why the coming week without a game comes at a great time for us to recover.”
Barcelona are now seven points clear of Atletico Madrid in second place with 15 games to go.
“This league is never easy, we’ll have to work hard,” Valverde said.
“We would like to have added three points but we are on the back of a very busy month.
“It’s logical that you won’t win every single match, there are always setbacks.”