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12.11.2008 23:44

Guardiola: “I value this win a lot”

Vanessa Forns

Josep Guardiola emphasised the importance of FC Barcelona’s victory against Benidorm in the Copa del Rey on Wednesday in Camp Nou that saw them progress to the quarter finals.

Before the game the Blaugrana coach highlighted the problems his team’s opponents could pose and the Segunda B side proved him right in a tight encounter. “That was one of the most important games we have played,” he said. “I am more than happy with my team and I feel proud of the players.”

Difficult opponents

Having been in charge of Barça B for a year, Guardiola was well aware of what Benidorm could offer and felt that too many people underestimated how good they could be. “I know these leagues,” he explained. “People do not know these teams and they underestimate them. There are young trainers that prepare their players very well and they deserve complete respect. It is a case where the teams have nothing to lose and a lot to win and that is why these games are always difficult.”

Praise for Benidorm

For those reasons, the Blaugrana boss insisted on placing importance on the win. “We are in the last eight and that is great news for us. In the first half of the match we wanted to impose out rhythm, but they played close together and we were unable to move the ball around well. There was a good intensity to the game though. Benidorm have all my respect and admiration. In the second half we have raised the pressure, won the ball back more and played better.”

The best team possible

Looking ahead to the draw for the quarter finals of the Copa del Rey, Guardiola stated that he would rather play against “a team from the first division and the bigger the better”. He continued: “We want the strongest team to come out of the draw with us.”

Good goalkeepers

Guardiola then reflected on the two goalkeepers in the game. “Pinto is a very good keeper and he played a great game, although it is certain that in the first half his defence made things difficult for him. The goalkeeper of Benidorm was extraordinary.”
Guardiola: “I value this win a lot”
Laporta: “We have achieved out objective”
After the victory against Benidorm in the Copa del Rey, the Blaugrana president Joan Laporta said that the home team had to work very hard in Camp Nou. “The most important thing was to win the tie,” he continued. “We have done that and our objective has been achieved. I want to congratulate Benidorm because they have played very well. They have taken us on from the first minute and we were unable to find much space.

“We did not leave ourselves open to a surprise. The team continues winning despite the fact that we are in a different competition and that should be highly valued. Teams from the Segunda B have beaten us in the past. Now they have knocked out teams such as Real Madrid and Villarreal. If you are not ready and prepared then it can happen to anyone.”

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