And Xavi Hernandez confirmed in the press conference before the King’s Cup semi-final match against Real Madrid that his players will fight for victory despite the many serious absences, but in his opinion, Real Madrid are the favourites.
[Marc Brau, Barça TV] Can the last two matches against Real be a reference point before tomorrow’s match? Does the fact that this is only the first game change the attitude of the two teams?
XaviWe will prepare in the same way as usual before the matches against Real Madrid. They are very difficult opponents who do not control at times, but they have these “mini-stages” in matches when they control and quickly, with one or two touches, move the ball towards the opponent’s goal. They play for each other. It’s two games with the return leg at the Camp Nou, and on top of that, it’s a completely different competition than La Liga. We’re going to win. We’ll want to show off your personality. The goal is to win.
[Ramon Salmurri, Catalunya Radio] Will the game tomorrow be more than just winning the Copa del Rey semi-final?
No, for us it is the Copa del Rey semi-final, in addition to El Clasico. We are playing for the title. At the moment, Real Madrid is the favourite. I am the current league champion and champions league title holder. Regardless of the absence or the Super Cup, I think Real Madrid are the favourites.
[Marta Ramon, RAC1] How do you beat Real Madrid at the Bernabéu without Pedri, Dembele, Lewandowski…?
I think we need to be an even more team than usual, both defensively and strategically… In games like this, these things make the difference. We want to be on the ball, cut losses, be brave… It’s a game where you have to show your personality. Real Madrid with Vinicius, Valverde, Rodrigo, Benzema can counter-attack very quickly. We will try to play in the opponent’s half and show the form of the game as in the Super Cup.
[Laura Brugues, TV3] How is Ansu Fati feeling? Can I play from the beginning?
He only just got back into training today, but that’s very good news. He’s feeling happy, he’s happy, he’s very excited and he’s going to be important to the team right now.
[Victor Marti, Agencia EFE] How do you work on the mentality of the players after two consecutive defeats and before such a match?
mental side every day. We are doing well in the King’s Cup. We beat Real Sociedad at home… We are in the semi-finals and have a chance to get another title. We have to give 100% despite the injury. The chip needs to be replaced. This is the time to respond.
[El País] How do you convey calm to a player like Ferran Torres before such an important match?
I give him confidence. I have said many times that I am responsible for her being here. I have complete confidence in him. The match against Cadiz was one of his best performances. He needed it. I think he was important to us and he can still be. You have to give him confidence, show him he can make a difference at Barcelona. He has our blind confidence.
[Alfredo Martínez, Onda Cero] Do you think that Real will play this match in the best moments of the season compared to Barcelona?
My argument is that Real Madrid won the cup last season: La Liga and the Champions League. We are in the process of building. We won the cup against them and played great, but it’s Real Madrid. We’ve seen him compete in Europe, he’s scored at Liverpool… I really think he’s the favourite. But that doesn’t change the fact that we have the reasons, the inclination, and the mentality to hurt them. I expect an even match.
[Alejandro Segura, Radio Marca] Recently, a statistic came out showing that Barcelona won 90% of their matches with Pedri, and 57% without Badri. What does Pedri mean to the team? What does the team miss when he leaves?
Pedri is a key player for us. He has grown so much with us. He makes the difference with goals, last passes, runs into the penalty area… He gives us calm, pause, and plays in the middle, which some profiles lack. It is a serious loss, very painful as Osman and Robert are. However, I think the team can compete in a good way.
[Helena Condis, Cadena SER] In Madrid, it is said that Real smelled blood.. Will you go to the Bernabéu tomorrow with more pressure than usual?
no no no. I choose with joy and will. Going to the Bernabéu always motivates me. I’m culé and I love it; I love this healthy football competition. I always say I would like to play in such a match. It will be a pleasure to play in midfield at the Bernabéu. But I can’t. That is why they ask the players to be brave and try, because winning at the Bernabéu is a beautiful feeling.
[Josep Capel, Radio Nacional] How does the team look psychologically after two losses?
I think it’s good. Just by looking at the last two matches, it may seem that we are in a hospital, but the focus is on where we are, which is the semi-finals of the Copa del Rey, in first place in La Liga, seven points behind Real Madrid, when last season we were fifteen years behind when we won the Copa del Rey. Super and we competed in Europe even though we competed. I think this “movie” looks good. We developed, showed our face in all matches, and were rarely weaker than the opposition. The team continues to grow. The balance must be positive.
[Adria Albets, Cadena SER] Did the last two defeats cause any doubts among the players?
I think we should think positively. We have a golden opportunity to win the Spanish League and the King’s Cup and we have to have this mentality. Tomorrow we will fight and try to control the match, to show our style of play. We can win, tie or lose, but we have to show our character.
[Jordi Blanco, ESPN] Before the last El Clásico at the Bernabéu, Barcelona was also eliminated from European competitions. Don’t you think that despite all this positive attitude, this match could mark the final stretch of the season?
and again! sign! It coincides with everything! If we don’t beat Valencia in the league, that will also be a sign; If we win tomorrow too. Losing against Almeria was also a sign of something, because we could have run away by 10 points, but we still had an advantage of seven points. We’re great first, then down. We need to focus on where we are and how we got here. I see this match as an opportunity.
[David Bernabéu, Sport] What is the message of the Barcelona coach Barcelona And madridismo After these failures?
We are doing well, internally we are analyzing the causes of failure. It’s not a mental or physical thing, it’s a ball thing. In the last game we didn’t defend well with goal kicks and didn’t attack in the best possible way. We always analyze and plan matches to be able to attack and defend in the best possible way. Every match is a different story and we have to keep competing. The message is that we are in a perfect position to win the prizes. Despite what happened in Europe, I think we are in an advantageous position, in the semi-finals of the King’s Cup, after winning the Super Cup, we are seven points clear in the league. I remember the level of suffering the team went through last season, and now we are happy with the current situation. Things could go wrong, but we’re working to make sure that doesn’t happen, and we’re optimistic on the team.
[Juan Bautista, La Vanguardia] Do you fear that the Negrera case will affect the atmosphere of the stadium and even the refereeing of this match?
No, the referees are doing their best. I always say my impression is that since I’ve been in Barcelona, the referees have never helped us. Let them clap in the best possible way, impartially and fairly. I don’t like to win cheated, I’ve said it many times.
[Carlos Monfort, Jijantes] Estanis Pedrola received a call-up to the Classic. What can you bring?
He’s a player we met last season. He was with us in Mallorca. He has good personal ability, he is strong and fast, he can score goals. He’s in good shape and with Robert out we thought he could help us out.
[Edu Polo, Movistar] You talk about optimism inside the club, but outside it looks like a hexagonal grave after defeats to Manchester and Almeria. Are you surprised by such a negative attitude towards the environment?
It doesn’t surprise me, I know the club and its surroundings, I know where the shots go. It usually doesn’t affect me, I just want the players not to affect me either, to be calm. We’re having a very good season, and we’re in a perfect position to win titles. We have to compete, we can’t lower the intensity and stress. I’m trying to pass that on to the guys. If we beat Almeria, we would have had the best number of points in LaLiga history at this point. Little has been said about it. We missed an opportunity – yes, the self-criticism is complete, there is anger, but we have one more game tomorrow and we are in a very good position to win two cups.
[Albert Nadal, Ara] After the defeat against Almeria, you said in the press conference that you were angry with the lack of passion and desire, especially in the first half. Have you talked to the guys about it? What was their response?
It’s an internal affair, so I won’t divulge everything either, but we did have a chat. Players are critical of themselves too, as they always do. We talked to each other face to face and it went well. The diagnosis has already been made. Now you have to compete.
[Marcelo Bechler, ESPN Brasil] Do you feel like you are facing the best version of Vinicius?
Yes, he makes the difference, he’s an exceptional player. It’s very difficult to stop running, he’s fast, he’s agile, he’s added a goal to his game, he’s a key player for Real Madrid. You have to watch it carefully. The player who makes the difference is at a very high level.
[Joan Poqui, Mundo Deportivo] What are your best memories of the Bernabéu?
Most of them are very good. I remember 2-6 situations where we would win and make it renewalWe showed our superiority, but it was a different era. These are the courses and now we are trying to somehow catch up with Real Madrid, who have won many titles in Europe for many years, so I think they are the favourites. I have good memories, but that’s history.
What advice would you give young players like Alarcón before a game like this?
This is a privilege. I always say it’s an opportunity, a privilege to play for Barcelona in the Clasico. This is the best club match in the world. In my opinion, it is bulletThis is the best thing. Facing your biggest competitor, competing with them, being able to defeat them and get a good feel on the field is just extraordinary. You have to enjoy it.
[Toni Juanmarti, Relevo] Do you count on the Arcon in such an important match?
Yes, everyone has a chance. Last time he went at a disadvantage, I believe in him. He is a versatile player, he can play on the wing, he can give depth to attacks, he is powerful. He could be an important player for Barcelona now and in the future. I personally like it very much.
[The Athletic] As a player, I also played some classics in 2011 that were very strong. What are the similarities and differences?
They have nothing to do with each other. At that time, unnecessary tension arose, and now there is respect for football, an atmosphere of fair play, like in the Super Cup. We cannot set a bad example from that period.
[Marc Fuste, La Sexta] What does winning at the Bernabéu mean, not so much for Barcelona as for a deteriorating mood at Real Madrid?
No, it’s about our confidence, not Real Madrid’s. For us to win, to compete well, to make a good impression on the Super Cup. We like to get that feeling, to play well. But Real Madrid is very strong, and they play at home where they beat us last time. It will be a very competitive match and we will have another match in April at the Camp Nou. We will try to control the match and control the match modes.
[David Ibanez, Mediaset] What do the fans say before the Classic?
We are doing well and we are in a good moment, despite the defeat against Almeria. We feel it culesSo I was very angry after the last game because of the missed opportunity, we could have increased the lead to 10 points. But this is football. We tried in the second half but it didn’t work out.
[Aurora Fuste, Principal.cat] I put Araujo on Vinicius in the Super Cup. What does Barcelona gain and lose by being placed in the right-back or central-defence position?
Ronald is a winner, winner of duels, outdoor races, air play, he is aggressive and physically strong. He is one of the best defenders in the world. He is essential for the team, whether he plays in the middle or on the wing.
[Albert Hernández, TVE] Minimal defeat and leaving the competition open in the possibility of a rematch would be a bad result?
We don’t subscribe to that. In Barcelona you have to win. Then there are many ups and downs during the match, but the intention of the team and our playing model is to always go out on the field to win, in all matches, to dominate and show your character. Of course we will not sign it.
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