After stating how pleased he is to have seen his team into the Champions League quarter finals, Guardiola claimed that “analysing the game, we managed to absolutely dominate the play”.
Rosell: “I am proud of Barça”
Sandro Rosell spoke about the Barça spirit after his team qualified for the quarter finals of the
Champions League in a tense match against Arsenal. The essential word for him is pride.
“Barça people feel pride. The pride to belong to this team, to have these players, this coach
and these fantastic fans that never stop cheering us on. I am proud of Barça”.
Speaking more about the fans at the Camp Nou, Rosell said “they didn’t let us
down. Pep asked the members and fans to come and they responded. Tonight, the Camp Nou was like an
The FCB president admitted that the home fans “suffered all the way through to the
final whistle ,,, but suffering with a good ending is fabulous.” On the team, he said
“we totally dominated” but asked how far the side can go in Europe, he preferred
caution, merely saying that “we have to stay calm and take things step by step”.
The Barça coach was able to conclude that as “we had 70% of the possession of the
ball”, while Arsenal “didn’t have a shot on goal” and “didn’t
string three passes together”, it was patently clear that Barça had played “an
extraordinary match … ultimately a team qualifies for doing many things, and I think that
overall, we were just better than them.”
Barça’s footballing quality
Guardiola was amazed that tonight at the Camp Nou “a team as good as Arsenal
didn’t shoot on goal”, a statistic he feels “says a lot about Barça in a
Van Persie red card
Arsène Wegner had a lot to say about the refereeing, and in particular
the sending off of Van Persie, which he feels dictated the Londoners’ defeat. Guardiola said
he can understand why Arsenal should “put defeat down to the red card … I feel sorry
for Arsenal because I like the way they play. I don’t know how they’ll analyse this
game, but if they say it’s because we were 11 against 10, then I’ll accept that. But
they can also ask whether they played the way they always do”.
Thanks for the fans
Whatever, Guardiola said “it is a huge satisfaction to be back in the
Champions League quarter finals. You have to be strong to get here, and you need continuity.
We’re proud we’re in the draw on the 18th … and thanks to the fans. We knew they
wouldn’t let us down.”
Praise for Mascherano and Iniesta
Guardiola ended with a few words about individuals, and two players that impressed
him this evening were Mascherano and Iniesta. The former he said “is a player who knows this
trade well, this business. He’s very experienced and is a guarantee wherever you play
him”. As for Iniesta, he highlighted his ability to “dribble past players … there
are few players like him, that’s why he gives us something extra, especially at home. This
year he’s very strong, very enthusiastic.”