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Tito Vilanova: “I lose in any comparisons [with Guardiola], I didn’t come here to compete with anyone”

FC Barcelona’s new manager gives his first press conference. “It's an honour. I'm eager and excited”, said Tito Vilanova. He is aware he's taking on “a very big challenge” but that “we won't give up on any match or any titles. We'll try to win them all”. "I accept this challenge because I know how football is understood here and, furthermore, I feel that I’ve been part of the successes of these past four years," says the new manager. Furthermore Vilanova emphasised: “I lose in any comparisons [with Guardiola], I didn’t come here to compete with anyone. I’ll try to do a good job, I’ll dedicate as many hours to the job as I have in the past”.

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15 June 2012 08:27 PM

by

Aleix Santacana

Barcelona (FCB).- Tito Vilanova gave his first press conference as the head manager of FC Barcelona and he started by thanking the Catalan sports club\u2019s President, the Board of Directors and the Football Director. \u201CIt\u2019s an honour that they chose me. I\u2019m excited and I feel strong enough to do the job,\u201D said the new Azulgrana Manager. Vilanova is very aware of the challenge that\u2019s before him: \u201Cthe normal thing is that you\u2019re offered the Barça job when things aren\u2019t going well [for the team]. I accept this challenge because I know how football is understood here and, furthermore, I feel that I\u2019ve been part of the successes of these past four years.


\u201CRepeating these four years will be very difficult. Very difficult. Many circumstances need to fall into place. We won\u2019t give up on any match or any titles, we\u2019ll try to win them all. We\u2019re very aware of how hard that is,\u201D said Vilanova. The Bellcaire d\u2019Empordà native also said that the way of doing business in the first team won\u2019t change: \u201CI'm ok with how most of the things have been done up until this point. Therefore, many of the methodologies will be similar, in training, press conferences and when we play away from home. It would be silly to try and change all of that now.\u201D

Focused on doing good work

Vilanova, who said that it would have been very difficult to pass up this opportunity, is very eager to lead this new project: \u201CI lose in any comparisons [with Guardiola], I didn\u2019t come here to compete with anyone. I\u2019ll try to do a good job, I\u2019ll dedicate as many hours to the job as I have in the past. I talked with my doctors and they all told me to go forward with it. I\u2019m very eager to get started,\u201D said the new Barça Manager, who added: \u201Cthe challenge is very big but having the memory of what recently happened to me, I doubt that it will be more difficult.

\u201CI\u2019m convinced that if we win, everyone will help us a lot. If not, we won\u2019t get as much help. We\u2019re all very well accustomed and we want to continue watching the team play the way they have been up until now. I\u2019m not asking for patience,\u201D explained Vilanova in the Camp Nou\u2019s Sala París packed with journalists. For the new manager, the length of the contract wasn\u2019t a priority, but \u201Cit gives a certain amount of stability to the Club.\u201D

\u201CMy relationship with Pep is perfect\u201D

Vilanova publicly thanked Guardiola for giving him the opportunity to return to FC Barcelona: \u201Che\u2019s my friend, almost like a brother.\u201D He added: \u201Cmy relationship with Pep Guardiola is perfect. If he had signed for another club I wouldn\u2019t be here right now. I\u2019m here because the Club offered me the job and I have the drive to do it.\u201D Guardiola and Vilanova have also talked at length over the past couple of days about the new managerial job: \u201CI work very closely with Pep. In the last five years we have never ended on a sour note. We worked well with each other.\u201D

When asked about his relationship with Rosell, Vilanova said: \u201Cit\u2019s fantastic. If it wasn\u2019t, I wouldn\u2019t be here.\u201D

Jordi Roura, the new assistant manager

Vilanova also talked about the decision to name Jordi Roura as his assistant manager: \u201CI need someone by my side that knows how to do my old job, without having to teach someone new. Jordi, who was already part of the technical staff, is the ideal person. Despite the fact that we\u2019re good friends, if he wasn\u2019t qualified for the job, he wouldn\u2019t be by my side.\u201D

Abidal and Messi

Finally, Tito explained that he has yet to speak to the team captains and the players, and only two players asked to speak with him after the Copa del Rey Final. However, Vilanova has gone to see Abidal: \u201Che\u2019s lost a lot of weight but that\u2019s normal, he seemed really upbeat. He needs to recover little by little, he\u2019ll let us know how he\u2019s feeling. We\u2019re all very pleased with his ongoing recovery.\u201D

When asked about Messi, the new Barça Manager was clear: \u201CI\u2019m lucky enough to have known Leo since he was child and I keep saying that his style of play looks very similar to when I first met him. He does the same things. And his attitude is also the same. I don\u2019t think it will be complicated at all, he\u2019s one of the easiest players to manage. I\u2019m convinced that we\u2019ll get along.\u201D

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  • Tito Vilanova (centre), at his first press conference as Barça's new Manager, next to Sandro Rosell (by FC Barcelona)

  • Tito Vilanova (centre), at his first press conference as Barça's new Manager, next to Sandro Rosell (by FC Barcelona)

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