Adriano: “Guardiola is like a father figure to us”
Summer signing Adriano says he feels Guardiola “is like a father figure to us – the relation we have with him is really good and very open, which helps to make us stronger as a group”.
In an exclusive interview with Barca TV and www.fcbarcelona.cat, Adriano gave his first impressions
of the club after a month or so with his new boss and teammates, and stressed what a good
atmosphere there was around the squad.
How are you enjoying being here in Barcelona?
“A lot. I’m very happy. Everything that has happened since the day I arrived has
been good. We made a good start and I won my first trophy with the club. I’ve played quite a
lot and both the players and the staff have been really good to me. Everybody has treated me really
well and I’m very happy with that. What’s more, this is a beautiful city - I’ve
been able to look around a bit and I love it”.
So, it’s been a good start...
“Yes, we’ve begun the season very well. People might think
it was an easy game at Santander if they just look at the result, but it wasn’t at all. It
was a tough match and if we made it easier, it was because we were very focussed. That’s what
made the difference”
Did you expect such a successful start?
“We knew we could start well, the players were really fired up and so we were
confident. The players who came from winning the World Cup seemed to be even hungrier for more
titles and that pushes you to work harder as well. The new players have to follow the example of
those who have been here for a while and also help them to keep their motivation”.
I wonder how you can still motivate yourself when you have won everything.
“You can’t imagine how tough it is to win and then continue to fight to win
again. First you have to make sure of your place in the team and then focus on winning titles,
that’s what defines a player’s career – what he has won, history only remembers
winners, I’m very happy to be part of a group that has had such success and continues to want
more . that helps to make us strong”-
Which trophies would you most like to win?
“The only two competitions I’ve been in and not won are the League and the
Champions League, so those are the two I’d most like to win and I think Barca can do
To win, you’ll have to face Madrid. Does that worry you?”
“I’m just focussed on Barca. We know Madrid have strengthened their squad and
they have players who can make the difference, but I just concentrate on working hard with my
teammates, if we do that then I think we’ll have success – it’d be great to be
able to maintain the fantastic run of titles we’ve had here recently”.
Are you excited about the chance to play in a Madrid-Barca derby?
“Of course. When you come to Barca, that’s the game you
think of. I just hope I’m available for the boss when we play. It’s a special game and
everybody is watching you, it would be a unique opportunity if I had the chance to play”.
With the transfer window closed, how do you judge the squad?
“I think it’s very good. Barca have won everything with these players and I think
the boss makes it so that everybody feels a part of the team, which is very positive. We all know
we have the chance of playing, which is excellent and Guardiola knows that whoever he plays, we
will all go out with the maximum intensity”.
Have you had time to get to know Javier Mascherano?
“The truth is that we have all had very little time to be with him, but I think
it’s been long enough to see straight off that he is a really good guy. I hope that he, Villa
and myself can help the team make history this season”.
What can you tell us about Guardiola?
“When I was a kid and I used to watch Barca play, I
couldn’t believe how good Guardiola was, for me he was a real star. Now I’ve met him, I
can only say good things about him – he’s a great person. Dani Alves and Keita had both
told me he was and I have now found that out for myself. He treats us really well, he’s like
a father figure to us – the relation which we have with him is really good and very open,
which helps to make us stronger as a group. I’ve learnt from all my coaches. I’m a
quiet person, but I observe what is going on around me and I love to learn from everybody. With
Guardiola I have picked up so much already, particularly about tactics - that’s something he
works on a lot”.
Is your versatility your main strength?
“Yes, I think so. I’ve been playing in different positions in defence and in
midfield for a couple of years. I’m available for the boss to use where he needs me and
I’ll always go out and give everything and be happy about the job I’ve been
But where do you feel most comfortable playing?
“My natural position is as a left back. I used to normally play on the left at Seville,
but when Alves signed for Barca, I switched to the right”.
How did you feel when you heard Barca wanted you?
“It was the best news I could have received. When I found out that
they had made an offer and Seville had accepted, it was just a fantastic feeling. It just needed my
okay and of course I gave it straight away. My lad has been a Barca fan since Alves came here and
he was so happy that I was coming to the club”.
Was the fact that Keita and Alves already here an important factor?
“They had spoken about how good the club was and the city too and everything affects
your final decision. I’d had offers from other clubs, but there was no real question in my
mind once I knew Barca wanted me. This is the best club in the world. I’m very happy to be
here and I want to again thank Sandro Rosell and Josep Guardiola for bringing me here”.
You are one of the few foreign players in the squad. What do you think of Barca’s
policy of bringing in home grown players?
“I think it is very good. They work very hard with the youngsters.
I’ve been working with them during the pre-season and we’ve seen that they are all able
to slot into the first team at any time. That’s what clubs should be doing – building
up their youth schemes and saving money”.
Is it true that you have to be a good five a side player before you become a footballer in
“Well, maybe more so in the past, it’s not so common now, but five a
side gives you the touch and the dribbling skills”.
That’s what happened with you?
“Yes, I started out on five a side pitches. When I was young that was normal. You would
play five a side and then move to eleven a side when you were thirteen or fourteen”.