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Guardiola: "We have great belief in ourselves"

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23.04.2011 23:33

Guardiola: "We have great belief in ourselves"

Jordi Clos

Pep Guardiola admitted that Barça didn’t play well against Osasuna, and accepted Real Madrid’s role as favorites in the Champions League, although his players will go into the game "with enthusiasm".

Guardiola: “We have great belief in ourselves“

With three points in the bag Pep Guardiola admitted that the Osasuna match was pretty "poor", but "it was important to win it.. ..we were aware of the game’s importance, and we took a very, very, very big step towards the League title" he added. Guardiola suggested that: "We know Madrid won’t lose any more games, because winning a trophy has liberated, and we have to get back to winning things”.

Pleased with his players

Although he pointed out that it wasn’t Barça’s best game, Guardiola praised the attitude of his players, including some who hadn’t played a lot lately: "The lads played with a lot of drive. When you don’t play often, at times it’s difficult to get into the game, but what can’t happen is that you don’t put in the effort, and that didn’t happen". He explained that he had expected "a tough game" and that "after a 120 minute Final, with only 3 days to recover, and with the semis of the Champions around the corner, the initial plan was to not start with some players who had been playing a lot lately”.

Concedes that Madrid are favourites

2011-04-23_PARTIDO_21.JPGPep Guardiola is now thinking about the Champions League game on Wednesday. "We won’t be going to Madrid in the best physical shape, but we’ll go there with a lot of enthusiasm. We accept that Madrid may be favourites, they deserve it with their last few weeks performances, but we’ll try to change that" he said. In addition, Guardiola stressed that his players will go to Madrid "with the utmost pride....we have great belief in ourselves".

Ambition in Madrid

Guardiola gave an idea of how Barça might play in Madrid. “We’ll do our best to come away with a good result". According to him, "in the Bernabéu we have to be really focussed, and try to create chances to win the match because if we don’t they’ll overwhelm us". It’s a challenge that Barça accept, according to Guardiola as they "feel more comfortable going out to win rather than to defend”.

Finally, Pep Guardiola commented on the rumor that there might be a Portuguese referee in the first leg of the semifinals. "If the referee is Portuguese, I’m sure that the Madrid manager will be pretty happy, just like he was in the first leg of last year’s Semi-Final" he concluded.

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