Barça Manager: “The most important game is against Levante”
Just one week before they face Real Madrid, FC Barcelona Manager, Josep Guardiola, refused to discuss the clásico. Instead he preferred to focus on the next Spanish League game at the Camp Nou against a solid and physical team: the Levante.
Barcelona (FCB).- Barça Manager, Josep Guardiola, likes to take each game as it comes and is making no exception this time. “The most important match is always the next one, against Levante.” Just one week before FC Barcelona face Real Madrid, Guardiola refused to discuss the clásico at this Friday's press conference. He wants his team “to stay as consistent as possible… it all comes down to one thing, playing your game and trying to win… I don’t want to waste my time talking about things that don’t depend on us” he added.
Nothing unusual about being second
Neither is the manager too concerned that Barça are currently second in the Spanish League’s table. “You can always get behind in sport” he said. “When you are behind, you must have the ambition of trying to catch the leader. It’s normal. Sometimes you can’t do it, but if we weren’t trying, we’d be doing wrong. However, that is not the case. There is nothing odd about being behind such a strong team.” He pointed out that FC Barcelona have often being in positions other than first, as is the case right now.
Chance to extend gap
Guardiola’s main concern, however, is Levante, who are fourth and just two points behind Barça. “They were a strong, physical side last year” he said. “They started the season well and that’s taken off some of the pressure. But this is a good chance for us to build a gap between us and them.” He also likes the way that Levante have so many players that have been in the Spanish championship for so long.
Up to committees
Guardiola was also asked to comment on the yellow card that Gerard Piqué got against Rayo Vallecano, which means he will be suspended against Levante, but will be able to play at the Santiago Bernabéu Stadium. “If the Competition Committee had decided he should get two games, then he would have been rested for two. If they said three, it would be three. We go by whatever the Committee decides. We always have” Guardiola insisted. He also said that in training sessions they never talk about getting yellow cards deliberately or resting players in case they get them. “If we did that, then I would never have played Alves in the Champions League when we still hadn’t secured top spot” he observed.