Iniesta warns about Champions League demands
Andrés Iniesta knows the team will need to be firing on all cylinders in such a demanding competition as the Champions League, where any errors can cost dear.
Speaking at a press conference, Iniesta has spoken about how Barça need to put the defeat at home to Hercules behind them, and bounce back with a win against Panathinaikos. “You just want to win again and get the good feelings back”, he said.
Champions League on his mind
He is delighted to have another bash at a European title, but knows that the road to Wembley will be a difficult one. “We will need to charge are batteries and have the right heads for such an important match … the Champions League is a very demanding competition and you pay the price for any mistakes”.
Hunger for titles
Iniesta doesn’t like to hear suggestions that so much success has knocked some of the ambition out of the squad. “I can assure you that we on fine form and ready to try to carry on winning, and we can let this chance go” he said, and added that if they don’t win “it’s not because through any lack of desire”.
Odd game on Saturday
Asked to explain the defeat to Hercules, the midfielder said “it was a very strange game, and it was just because of one thing, but a whole lot of things that mounted up … we found it hard to get our game flowing and Hercules were very well organised.” But he doesn’t think they should change their approach when playing sides like that. “We just have to be a physically and tactically ready for such games” he said.
Fuente(albilla) (oh God, i apologize for the terrible joke)
Guardiola has no doubts about players
Josep Guardiola, despite the criticism received after the game with Hercules, had said that even if this season turns out to be the worst one possible, he will never doubt his players.
Speaking to the press before FC Barcelona’s opening game of the 2010-2011 Champions League, the first team manager made it clear that regardless of results “it is impossible to doubt these players. We could have the worst season possible, but I would still have my faith in them. The other day I didn’t make their job easy for them” he admitted.
“They get all the credit”
Guardiola pointed out that last season “after winning six titles in a row, they were able to get 99 points in such a demanding competition as La Liga. Having seen that, it’s impossible to have any doubts, they get all the credit. I know them, and it hurt them to lose. They are too honourable, they want to perform, and want to compete and to do as well as they know they can” he added.
He wanted to explain that there is always a reason for losing a match, but “lack of desire was not an issue. They want to carry on winning, that’s their desire, and I want people to know that defeat affected them. The other reason is that the opposition played better”. Guardiola said he had no intention of passing judgement on his players, because it is his own job “to make things easy for them. I would be angry if I felt they weren’t trying hard enough”.
Turning to the game at the Camp Nou against Panathinaikos, Guardiola said he expects “the best opponent possible”. Barça will be facing “one of the historic Greek teams” and underlined the experience in their squad.
Return to normality
The manager feels that playing away at the Camp Nou, their visitors are probably going to take a defensive approach. As for Barça, it is important for them to make the most of their home fixtures, and that in order to that “we have to find our game again and be ourselves again”.
Guardiola claims to know the secret to ensuring there is no repeat of Saturday’s debacle. “Teams are incredibly fragile. Just one piece has to be missing and things get fragile. We were lacking the right movement to attack well.”
Exactly 2 years ago, Sergio Busquets made his debut with Barcelona.
The player from Badia has earned his spot in the elite of football in just 730 days. No one can argue about it.
Two years ago Pep Guardiola showed the world the possibilities of a tall thin midfielder whose football reminds the one played on the street, even though he has always played with boots on. He was the son of Carlos Busquets and playing at Barça B. Now things have changed and the former goalkeeper has become the father of Sergio Busquets, a modern footballer, a specialist who knows all the secrets of the pivot position. (um... do you actually call it “pivot”? The dictionary told me so, but i haven't seen anyone using this term in here)
Two years ago you made your debut, on the second match of la liga against Racing. Has it been an eternity or it just happened yesterday?
Everything has gone by really fast, and, most importantly, very well, both individually and collectively, that is what matters.
Do you remember that day, the hours before the match and what happened later?
I will never forget that day. I was training with the first team and Pep told me that morning that I was going to play, if I was ready. I said yes, I was, and eager.
As if you could say “no”.
You can't say “no” to that opportunity.
Did he gave you any instructions?
No, he prepared the game like any other. He told me to be calm, to do what i usually did.
He played things down.
Yes, like what's usual for a young player who makes his debut, he told me to be calm, that I did not have to prove anything to anyone because he already knew me.
Sergio Busquets has reinvented the position of pivot or improved it?
I think the position itself, like football, evolves over time and is now one of the positions most important and complete positions on the field. You always have to do many things in attack, many in defense ...
What have you changed as a player since your debut?
I am the same, the only thing that has changed in this two years in which I have become much more of a player than I was. When I arrived I was young and now I have just turned 22, but I feel much more settled in professional football, in all competitions. But I have so much to learn. If I believed that I know everything at 22 I would be very wrong. But I feel much better, more experienced, learning every day.
What does Pep always remind you, what does he demand from you?
Depends on the rival: if we play with a forward or two. That will aid that takes, to keep the defense and the inside line together, to make pression, to make the ball move faster.
How important is intelligence in your area?
It is clear that to be a pivot you have to be smart and also you need to be concentrated for the whole 90 minutes.
In what ways should you improve?
I do not know, there's always things to improve. And being 22 years even more than if I was 26 or 28.
Anything in particular?
I think in the long distance shot, but it's obvious that I don't have many options to shoot from afar. Maybe in the shift. I hope to improve all these little details as time goes by.
In your position is forbidden to drive the ball?
It is rarely possible, it's better to move fast, unless you have superiority in the midfield to go out from a rival and set another one free. But usually you have to move the ball fast.
In the second team you used to play on the inside. Did you recycle?
Yes I played inside, but sometimes I used to play as a pivot. For my characteristics, and I think that over time, it was a good decision that the coach and I decided to set me here.
Who do you look up to, to improve?
I try to catch a bit of everybody. The perfect player doesn't exist, but I try to catch a bit of all of them. When I arrived, the players that I have more opportunities to learn from are those on my team and my NT, and that's who I spend most of my time with. But the one that struck me from the beginning was Xavi, although we play in a different position. I also learned from Toure, Xabi Alonso and Senna.
Toure left because of you.
He didn't left for me at all. He wanted to play more minutes. There have to be rotations, minutes for everybody, but in big games, which we all want to play, the coach decides and he look after the team.
You are the piece that completes the puzzle.
I may have given this position some features that Pep wanted. But when he Touré played he also gave him some things. Some of them similar to mine, but some other were different, the same can happen with Mascherano.
What des he have that you don't have?
He is a much faster player much faster and with more experience.
Everyone agrees that he will adapt quickly.
You have to get used to the system and playing characteristics of Barça, but Javi has a lot of quality and will adapt very quickly.
Was his transfer necessary?
Yes. You never know, because we have players from Barça B, but it is a great signing and a great player that will help us.
Do you feel lucky?
I feel privileged for many things: to be able to live off football, which is what I like, in my club, how things have turned up in terms of titles, in minutes, everything.
Last saturday was a setback?
We hope it is. We can only think of Panathinaikos and learn what we did wrong. You don't have many explanations, things are like that.
Is it harder this year?
I think so, every year is a bit harder, hopefully la liga will be a struggle between more teams.
Oh, I was so excited that I forgot the source of the interview in spanish! :)
Also this happened after the training session!!!!!
Don't forget to breath:
This is too cute not to share, all for problematique
Have fun. Love you all!! <3
Oh, I wanted to ask you, as I've been translating some stuff I've noticed that my knowledge of some of the football terms in english is not that good. If you notice something wrong, let me know so I can improve and change it for the next time! ;)
EDIT: OMG HOW COULD I FORGET: TONIGHT CRACKOVIA IS BACK (LIKE IN 30-45 MIN) DON'T FORGET TO WATCH IT IF YOU CAN. IF NOT, I PROMISE TO MAKE A POST ABOUT IT TOMORROW! :P