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26.02.2008 19:07

Koeman: “We can surprise Barça”

David Puig

Ronald Koeman is not counting out a surprise from Valencia at the Camp Nou even though he has to admit that Barça is the better football team at the moment.

Valencia coach Ronald Koeman has spoken to the press in Barcelona and has analysed elements of the Copa del Rey semi final on Wednesday at the Camp Nou. Koeman admits that Barça are back to their best, but neither is this the same Valencia that lost 3-0 at home to Rijkaard’s side. “Barça are favourites because they are on form and have players back. They are also in good spirits after regaining so much ground in the league, but the Cup is different. It is a very important game because we both want to get to the final. We are not discounting the opportunity of playing a good game and causing a surprise. Also this is a very different Valencia to the one that lost 3-0 in the league. We were going through a very bad spell back then and we have improved a lot in our latest games”.

Hard to stop Messi

Koeman was asked about Messi, often considered the biggest danger in the Barcelona squad. “We can’t condition our defence because of Messi’s presence. He is a very difficult player to stop because he gets past up to three players, but we mustn’t get obsessed with him. Barça have also recovered Eto'o, the defence is playing well, there are a lot of possibilities in midfield… We have to remember that this is a two-legged affair and plan this Wednesday's game right”.
Koeman: “We can surprise Barça”
Not forgotten his Barça past
Ronald Koeman has not forgotten his past at Barça or his former colleagues. He still wishes the best for Barça and also Getafe, now managed by Michael Laudrup. “If Valencia don’t win the cup final, I’d like it to be won by Getafe for the sake of my old friend Laudrup, but I hope Barça win the League and Champions League. That way we’re all happy”.

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