Thursday, January 20

“Madrid is a great test to know where we are”

He didn’t say it once. Nor two. Up to three times he used xavi, the Barça coach, the same message to refer to the duel with Madrid in the semifinal of the Spanish Super Cup. “It is an opportunity, a challenge, a title. It could be a turning point for us,” argued the Barça coach from Riyadh hours before experiencing his first classic from the bench. “It is an important test to know where the team is,” he reiterated.

The tone of xavi It has been “positive”, as usual, but, at the same time, appealing to “intelligence” to face Madrid. “For me, it is the most fit team in Spain,” he stressed, specifying that his players must “be smart” so as not to make mistakes in the management of this classic. “It is a good opportunity to find out where we are, it is a great test,” he has said over and over again without straying from the main axis of his speech.

“Araujo? We’ll see. Ansu? Also. Pedri? The same. You have to know how the players are physically after having passed the Covid and others who come from long injuries,” said Xavi, indicating that a victory over him Madrid “would give the project credibility, tremendous credibility.”

Get the technician back to Araujo, that went with the immobilized right hand, Frenkie de Jong, ansu fati, Pedri Y Ferran torres, who were applauded by their teammates as soon as they stepped onto the Saudi Arabian turf. As soon as they finished training, all five received medical discharge, so they are available to the coach.

After training in Riyadh, Ansu, Araujo, Frenkie de Jong, Pedri and Ferran received medical discharge

“They are footballers who are calling to make a difference and I am sure they will improve the team. But you have to manage them intelligently,” said Xavi, shortly before Pedri and Ferran Torres went through a congratulatory corridor, as did Umtiti , newly renovated until 2026 to allow the registration of the former City forward.

“A final”

It is a semi-final, but as the Barça coach recalled it is actually “a final” because it would bring him closer to a title. “It would be a tremendous turning point”, Xavi commented, specifying that he continues to “see positive things in the team, but there are others that must be improved such as the centers or lateral fouls where we are suffering. We have to keep improving because we are building a new project. “

A new project that passes the great exam of Madrid. “I have been in charge for two months, we have improved a lot by transferring this idea of ​​the game that the team is taking. But we need time to grow, although we are going to compete ”.

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In that sense, a classic will be fought between two teams that live radically different moments. “I see a Barça under construction and a Madrid, the most fit team in Spain. But a classic is always unpredictable,” Xavi has sentenced.

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