The Catalans fought back from being a goal behind to lead at the break, and that’s how things stayed with neither side managing to score after the restart.
“It was an important win and we deserved it,” Koeman said after the game. “The second half was a little more difficult because they created more, but we were against a great team.
“Our first half was fantastic though and we should have scored more. We pressed and La Real played well with the ball, but we stole it. We pressed really well.
“It was an open game because the opponents know how to play well. But, seeing those chances, the game was ours and the win was deserved.”
The coach sprung a surprise by leaving Clement Lenglet on the bench to field Ronald Araujo and Oscar Mingueza at centre-back, but the two impressed.
“They’re Barcelona players,” Koeman said of the pair. “They know how to play with pressure. And there are no fans.
“They’ve shown their quality and that they have futures.”
“He’s a great goalkeeper,” Koeman explained. “He saved a sure goal at the end.”
Barcelona are now closing in on those at the top of the LaLiga Santander table, and the Dutchman isn’t writing them off just yet.
“There are still a lot of games left,” Koeman said. “A lot of things can happen and so much depends on ourselves.”