The Bar a coach showed himself to be motivated and exicted for the Cup, a tournament that for him has a ‘special atmosphere’.

With Athletic Bilbao their opponents, Bar a will be aiming for a 27th victory in the competition and the coach made it clear that both he and the squad were not lacking in motivation. “Ita s one of the best games you could possibly play in, for the atmosphere, and because there is a trophy at stake,” commented the blaugrana coach.

“[The Copa del Rey final] is one of the most beautiful games you can play, no doubt, because of the atmosphere and wea re playing for a title,a he said at a Press conference. Ia m not envious of the players. I stopped playing football years ago. Using motivational videos for players who are already super-motivated could backfire. Wea ll try to get the press the right buttons. If you ask any Athletic fan, they also think theya ll will win. Faith is a fansa trait, and players from both teams know how difficult [the match will be]. It keeps them alert. We havena t made a a that mistake [of resting on our laurels] all season and wea re not going to think about [the Champions League] before the [Copa] final.I expect a very special atmosphere. Theya re a team who are very uncomfortable to play against because they press a lot and come into the match in good form.”

“However, we already know them and they already know us. Our matches are always attractive.For the record, Athletic will have more fans [at Camp Nou] than Barca, but until the time comes I hope ita s not like that. Throughout history, there are many finals that have been lost by the home team. The atmosphere will be different. Ita s a wonderful stage. Who benefits? Wea ll see. The players are already aware of the difficulty that a final poses, and they wona t play in a smug manner.”


“Wea re now approaching the best part of the season. Ia m delighted that wea re only two steps away from the culmination of a season. We hope to beat Athletic by playing good football. Ia m motivated and hoping that we win these two games. Wea ll wait until the season ends to describe our season. I dona t have any critics anywhere and even fewer in Rome. If I have any then I dona t know where they are.Wea re thrilled about winning this trophy. Wea d never put one [competition] over the other.These are opportunities that pass and ita s difficult to repeat them. The players know they should be exploited.[Athletic] have many stars, but we know that Athletic are a team who press and dona t loosen up.I hope the game is very similar to the two wea ve played in the League this season.In the first half of the season, we didna t score until the 79th minute. At San Mames, I remember our great performance. These players are used to playing on countless pitches. Instead, I consider [Camp Nou being the host venue] a motivation and the setting to be unique because of the stadiuma s beauty and atmosphere.”

“It would be ridiculous to do something we thought could harm us [in regards to preparing for the finals]. Wea re adopting the same routine that allowed us to be champions and reach two cup finals. The players are the sleeping in the same beds as usual and with the same person![On whether a treble would keep him at Barca next season], it would drive us towards competing for another treble.”