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22.02.2010 11:51

“We haven’t forgotten the last 16 tie last season”


Txiki Begiristain told reporters that he has not forgotten last season’s CL match against Lyon: “We suffered a lot in the Gerland. They scored very early and we had to react straight away. In the Champions League any slip-up can get you knocked out”.

Minutes before boarding the plane for Stuttgart, the technical secretary, Txiki Begiristain, told us: “We have to jog our memories. I think back to the R16 match against Lyon last year. It was a really tough match. That clash in the Gerland shows that you can never take anything for granted in the Champions League”.

“The team looks really strong”

However, Begiristain revealed that the team has travelled to Germany in good shape: “It’s true we have a few players missing but the ones who are available are in perfect shape to compete at a high standard. The team looks really strong to me”.

“Stuttgart have improved a lot”

The draw for the R16 was held some two months ago and since then Stuttgart has made a remarkable improvement. According to Begiristain: “It’s a long time since the draw and Stuttgart is a different team. At the time they were near the relegation zone in the league and were struggling to remain in Europe. Now we have to be really focussed because they’re playing very well and could make our lives very difficult”.

“We have to be true to our style”

Txiki believes that Barça will go through to the next round if the team play the way they know how: “If we stick to our usual style of football and ignore the circumstances surrounding us in Stuttgart, we have a good chance of going through to the quarterfinals. We have to be confident and alert.
“We haven’t forgotten the last 16 tie last season”

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The strongest will win
The race for the Spanish league title between FC Barcelona and Real Madrid shows no signs of slackening off. In Begiristain’s opinion: “Last year we had Real Madrid breathing down our necks to the last minute. This season it’ll be even more complicated because they have brought in some good players. Both teams are looking good. In the end the strongest will win”.

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