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08.09.2008 19:28

Guardiola to use Barça Atlètic players

Marc Guillén

FC Barcelona coach Josep Guardiola has decided not to play any first team players in the Copa Catalunya semi final because he fears playing on the artificial turf in the Sant Carles Stadium runs too great a risk of injury.

The coach will still be travelling with the players in the Barça bus to Sant Carles de la Ràpita for the game with Sant Andreu, but will be leaving Luis Enrique, coach of Barça Atlètic, to run a side that will solely feature reserve players.

Risk of injury

080908entrenament_x1x.jpg“I know the Sant Carles ground and it would be running too much of a risk of injury to take the first team players there. We have a small squad, and taking such important players could be a huge mistake. There are plenty of reserve team players and I think it would be better if they went”, explained Josep Guardiola, who visited Sant Carles de la Ràpita last season when he was in charge of Barça B.

Due to players being away on international duty, at the moment Pep Guardiola only has six first team players at his disposal: Valdés, Pinto, Sylvinho, Víctor Sánchez, Alves and Eto'o.

Henry’s contribution

Pep Guardiola also spoke about the role played by Henry at FC Barcelona. “Henry can play on the left or in the middle, but we don’t solely depend on him playing well. This season I have been very happy with his performances and work rate. I am not only thinking about the game with Numancia, and I think he’s doing a lot for us”, he said.

“I’d give Eto’o permission again”

080908entrenament_x3x.jpgThe boss also said he was quite happy to allow Samuel Eto’o to travel to Zimbabwe for a clinic next week. “He asked me on Thursday before the game against Numancia and I gave him permission because we do not have a game this week. If we had had a game on Sunday I would not have let him go, but we decided he could recover in weekend training and so there shouldn’t be a problem. I, and only I, can authorise him, and I’d do the same thing again”, said Guardiola, who reiterated the fact that he is more than happy with the way the Cameroonian is playing.
Guardiola to use Barça Atlètic players
Luis Enrique’s squad
For the Copa Catalunya semi final on Tuesday against Sant Andreu, Luis Enrique has decided to name a seventeen-strong squad: goalkeepers Ruben Miño and Oier Olazábal; defenders Montoya, Héctor Verdes, Jonathan, Botía, Fontàs, Oriol Romeu and Polaco; midfielders Sergi Busquets, Rueda, Abraham and Jonathan; and strikers Víctor Vázquez, Rochina, Adrià Carmona and Zambudio.

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