Xavi eager to 'show that Barça can compete in Europe'

Xavi eager to 'show that Barça can compete in Europe'

Coach looks ahead to Europa League clash with Manchester United on Thursday

Xavi Hernández has addressed the media ahead of the game with Manchester United in the Europa League. Here's the pick of the quotes:

Manchester United

“It's a huge game, a spectacular knockout tie for anyone who likes football. Both teams have hit their best form of the season. But nobody can call it a Champions League game because we're playing in the Europa League.”

“Unless there are any surprises, the tie will be decided at Old Trafford. I think they'll be top quality games, with tight results. Things might get decided tomorrow, but it's really the second leg that concerns me. It's a shame we won't be playing at home.”


Erik Ten Hag

Ten Hag has changed the team's face. It wasn't easy but he is doing a very good job. Turning things around at Manchester United was a big challenge but he's doing it. He has brought back hope."

“They have a lot of attacking options. And they're strong at the back too. He's an attack-minded coach and that shows in almost all of his games. Erik Ten Hag seems to be a great coach.”


The dangers

“They have a lot of things and they can easily make things difficult for us. We will need intensity and rhythm. The Premier is a physically demanding competition and we'll have to show that we can cope with that.”

“They make very quick transitions with players like Rashford, Garnacho and Sancho. They have a very strong counter-attack and we will need players who can stop those sprints. Marcus Rashford is one of the most dangerous and in-form players in Europe."


“We weren't good enough in the Champions League and that's why we're here. We are very motivated and the stadium will be full tomorrow and we have to rise to the occasion. It is an important challenge for us to show that we are able to compete in Europe.”


“There is no extra pressure. It's just the normal pressure you expect at Barça. Every game, every training session, every press conference is a test."

Frenkie and Araujo

Frenkie was very frank with me and told me he wanted to stay. He is our player and we are very happy with the results and his leadership. He has found some great form and is working well with his team-mates. They are enjoying themselves on the pitch.”

Araujo is a clear example of leadership. He is a shockingly good defender. He is good enough to be a superstar at this club and in world football. I have rarely seen a player of such physique and tactical and technical ability.”

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