Sir Alex Ferguson had few complaints following Manchester United’s Champions League final defeat to Barcelona, with the Scot admitting the Catalans were deserving winners.

United lost their grip on the crown thanks to goals from Samuel Eto’o and Lionel Messi, as Barca were totally dominant in Rome.

Andres Iniesta and Xavi outclassed Ryan Giggs and Michael Carrick in midfield and Ferguson admits his side were beaten by a better team – with the Scot admitting the first goal was the killer moment.

“We started brightly and were confident and could have been in front, but the goal was a killer for us,” Ferguson told ITV Sport. “It was hard to get the ball back off them and they kept it very well.

“They were two bad goals to lose. We have excelled defensively this season but they were shoddy goals to lose tonight.

“I don’t think we played as well as we can, but we played against a good team. We’ve got to give credit to Barcelona.

“Xavi and Iniesta were outstanding, they keep the ball all night. When they play Messi up front they overload in midfield and make it difficult.”

Ferguson is convinced his charges will learn from the defeat.

He added: “The players have shown great courage and resilience, that was their 66th game tonight.

”We have to come back stronger. We have been beaten by a better team so we will come back stronger.”