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18.03.2009 18:54

Gudjohnsen: “Barça has never been afraid of Real Madrid”

David Puig

Gudjohnsen believes the team is capable of making a successful bid for all three trophies. The Icelandic striker, who insists that the players have never been afraid of Madrid, revealed that he has no preferences as to the next opponent in the CL.

Eidur Gudjohnsen told reporters before Wednesday’s training session that the team is in good shape ahead of the decisive stage of the season. Right now he wouldn’t change places with any other team despite the demanding schedule of matches coming up: “Barça is in good shape. When the matches are important you don’t feel the tiredness. Right now we’re fighting in three competitions and I wouldn’t change places with any other team. I believe we deserve to be where we are”.

Pressure from Real Madrid

Gudjohnsen assured reporters that the players have never felt pressure from Barça’s eternal league rival, Real Madrid: “We’ve never been afraid of Real Madrid making a comeback. We’ve always said that winning matches isn’t easy. To win trophies you have to suffer right to the end. The team is in very good shape and stronger than ever”.

guddy-fcb-valladolid_x16x.jpgBarça’s performances in recent matches have drawn praise throughout the world of football. Gudjohnsen avoids comparisons and insists that playing well doesn’t guarantee victories: “Some people think we are playing better than Real Madrid, but the team playing the best football doesn’t always win. With all due respect, I’m sure Liverpool doesn’t play the prettiest football, but now they’ve had some excellent matches and in recent years they’ve gone far in the Champions League. What you have to do is find the balance between good football and results”.

No preference in the Champions League

18-03-09_WB_GUDJHONSEN_04.jpgThe Icelandic international is looking forward to Friday’s CL draw but is not interested in speculating on possible opponents: “All the teams are strong and have a lot of quality. I don’t have a preferred rival. I know least about Porto but that doesn’t mean they’re weaker. Is it better to play the second leg at home? That depends on the result in the first leg. I don’t think it’s so important to play either the first or second leg at home”.

The power of English football

All four representatives of the Premier League have made it through to the last 8 of the Champions League. Gudjohnsen knows the English game well and gave us his explanation as to its apparent strength: “Over the last 10 years they have been able to combine the traditional physical English game with talent from the continent, thanks to the presence of European coaches and players. They’ve improved a lot and the results demonstrate that”.
Gudjohnsen: “Barça has never been afraid of Real Madrid”

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Not concerned about referees
The referee for Sunday’s match against Malaga in the Camp Nou is César Muñiz Fernández, the same man who officiated the Athletic Club v Real Madrid match. When asked about the referee, Gudjohnsen revealed: “I don’t think about the referees much. I believe they never go out to harm either team or to look for problems. I think the refereeing issue is exaggerated”.

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