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21.09.2009 12:20

Laporta: “We have to make demands of ourselves”


Joan Laporta feels that the football first team have to make big demands of themselves in order to continue being successful. He described Guardiola as a perfectionist and a seeker of excellence.

Speaking at the inauguration of the ‘Muscletech Network Workshop', the Barça president was speaking to the members of the media about some of the issues currently affecting the club. Laporta highlighted the demands Josep Guardiola makes of his players. “He is doing well” he said. “But this has only just started and there are still details to be dealt with. Guardiola is a perfectionist who seeks excellence, and tries to maintain the players’ motivation.”

Along similar lines, and reflecting his own coach’s words after winning 5-2 against Atlético Madrid, saying there were still matters to be fine-tuned, Laporta said “that is the key to success … you can never afford to relax and go with the flow, because these are some of the best times in the history of Barça”.

“Messi has become the leader of the team”

2009-09-19_FCB_-_ATLETICO_DE_MADRID_005.JPGHe was also full of praise for Lionel Messi, who last week extended his contract with FC Barcelona until 2016 : “He is the best player in the world, committed to the club and has become the leader of this group. He is the man who makes the team, who leads it, and when he has to, he can bring out the very best of his qualities to win games. He is scoring goals and looks happy. He is the big star, and knows just how important he is to the team. As Pep Guardiola says so often, “if Leo is happy, the thing’s going well.”

Still on the Argentinian, Joan Laporta said he feels thrilled every time he sees Messi kiss the club crest: “I love to see a player being so grateful, so aware of what he has achieved here, at Barça, in Catalonia. Leo shows his commitment in everything he does. The feeling of affection is mutual.”

Iniesta, Puyol and Márquez’s contracts

WEB_PARTIDO_20.JPGJoan Laporta also confirmed that the club is going to improve Iniesta’s contract and renew those of Puyol and Márquez: “Proposals have been made to Márquez and Puyol. As for Andrés, we have spoken with his agent. It will take some time, because both parties have to agree.” But he is confident that these issues “will be resolved before the end of the year”.

“This is just starting”

But despite such a good start to the League campaign, with three wins in three games, the Barça president is aware that it is still early days. “You can’t say anything after just three games” he said. We are simply happy with the results, and the way the team is playing, and the way they are working, and improving things in order to get better and better. What is really important is to stay motivated, to work and stay humble, always respecting our opponents, and making sure we stick to the same level as last year.”
Laporta: “We have to make demands of ourselves”

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“We only worry about ourselves”
Asked what he makes of the new-look Real Madrid, Joan Laporta said “at Barça we only think about Barça. We are very keen to make sure we stay motivated and that the players continue to do their very best. We have the responsibility of defending three big titles. We have to stay focused on ourselves and getting better day by day. If we can do that, then we are doing the right thing”. He also added that he was in no position to comment on the way Madrid are playing because he hasn’t had the chance to watch any of their games yet.

What interests him is FC Barcelona: “We are not happy just to win, we are much more demanding of ourselves than that. We look for something more, a certain way of winning that the fans can enjoy. We always like to end games feeling pleased with what we have achieved”.

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