Manchester United Star Wayne Rooney has hailed FC Barcelona’s current team as good as any side in the club’s history.
FC Barcelona have had some fantastic teams in their history, especially since the 1990s. The best Blaugrana sides have dominated Europe with scintillating attacking football, demolishing teams on their way to winning titles after titles.
Think of the dream team that won the club their first European Cup, or the Ronaldinho-fueled side of 2005-06 or the all conquering side of Pep Guardiola that won every single trophy they played for in 2009 and you recollect teams that played football that drove teams into submission with wave after wave of attacks being launched, home or away, big teams or small.
Current FC Barcelona squad as good as any
Manchester United are set to face the Catalan giants in a pre-season friendly on Saturday, and Wayne Rooney believes that the current FC Barcelona squad, which consists of arguably three of the four best forwards in the world in Neymar, Messi, and Luis Suarez, is as good as any side the club has had in their history.
Manchester United and Wayne Rooney have a first hand experience of how good FC Barcelona sides in the past have been, having been blown away in two Champions League final in 2009 and 2011.
Speaking to ESPN FC, Rooney said that FC Barcelona’s treble success last season has taken them to a new level.
“Barcelona are a fantastic team and, after Real Madrid winning the Champions League [in 2014], they wouldn’t have liked that and they’ve come out again and been incredible really, probably as good as they have been over the last 10 years, I believe,” the United captain said.
‘Enrique’s Barcelona different to Pep’s’
Rooney feels that there is a contrast in the style between the current side, which is coached by Luis Enrique, and the one that beat them twice in the Champion’s League final under Pep Guardiola.
“It’s a different way of playing — they’re defending a little bit deeper and not going and closing down teams the way they did and they’re hurting teams on the counter-attack, . ” he said.
“You can see there’s a change in the way they play, but, with the players they have got, obviously [Lionel] Messi, Neymar and [Luis] Suarez, they are a massive threat to anyone.“
‘Champions League defeat hurts, but FC Barcelona were best team in Europe’
Rooney admits that the Champions League final losses to FC Barcelona hurt, even more so because of the venue of the loss being Wembley stadium in London in 2011.
“You’re so close to winning it and to lose twice to Barcelona is hard to take really,” he said. “I think you sometimes have to hold your hands up and say they were the better team — the best team in Europe — and it was going to be difficult for us to win the game. I’d say probably the game at Wembley, being there, it would have been nice to have won the Champions League there.”