Xavi: 'Villarreal beat Real Madrid, so they can beat us'

Xavi: 'Villarreal beat Real Madrid, so they can beat us'

FC Barcelona manager looks ahead to a tough away fixture on Sunday at 9pm CET

This Sunday at 9pm CEST, Barça go to the Estadio de la Ceràmica in search of three points against a Villarreal side managed by former blaugrana coach Quique Setién. Here's a recap of some of what Xavi Hernández had to say about the game at his Saturday media conference.


Villarreal and Quique Setién

"I think Setién is a great coach. He tries to play the way we do. He likes his teams to keep the ball and he's doing a fine job with Villarreal. They're in good form despite losing to Elche. They have some very good centre backs, Dani Parejo is an extraordinary player. Pepe Reina is very good with his feet, he makes them feel secure. I'm not sure if Gerard Moreno will be able to play, but they're a team who can easily beat you, like they beat Real Madrid."

"When Setién was at Barça I was too busy in Qatar to know or take much interest in what was happening. I think it was about the results than the squad. If I don't win games, the same will happen to me as happened to Quique."


Big game

"Every game is a big one and especially now. We could go 11 points clear of Real Madrid and that puts pressure on them. But no away game is an easy affair. Logically we want the three points, but a lot will come down to who controls the ball. The more ball you have, the better your chance of getting points. We'll try to be aggressive and demonstrate what good form we are in."

Sergio Busquets

"We will miss Sergio tactically. Especially in end-to-end games he's good as pausing things."

"There are no problems with Busi. He knows how important he is to us. He's a living legend, and it all depends on what he decides. He knows our position and the rest is down to him."

Ansu Fati

"We have high hopes pinned on Ansu. We have built the squad around the players we want and he is a very important part of those plans. Not just now but for the future as well. He needs to be patient and make the most of his chances, which is exactly what he is doing."

"None of our players are on the market right now. The transfer window is closed so there is no need to talk about sales or weird stuff. Nobody mentioned selling Ansu at all in January and now they are, I don't understand it. We have blind faith in Ansu and he knows it. I have no idea why people are even suggesting that we should want to sell him."

Balde and Sergi Roberto

"Balde wants to stay and I have absolutely no concerns that he won't. He is happy here and he wants to stay here. He is a player for many years and I really don't see any problem there."

"Sergi is a very important player. He can adapt to different positions and always delivers. He's a true professional. I have told him that he is welcome to put another year on his contract and I think we're close to an agreement."

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