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LOS ANGELES — The premiereof FC Barcelona's2015/16season will be against one of football's greats, the formerLiverpool and current LA Galaxy player StevenGerrard. Just hours before facing Barça, Gerrard sat down to talk about his respect andadmiration for the Club.
Q: You are going to play a pre-season game against a Barça side who won the treble last season. How do you see FC Barcelona as a club and what do you think of their current squad?
A: I think they are a fantastic club, a huge institution in football and very successful. They are European Champions and they are probably the best team on the planet at the moment. They have world class players and probably the most dangerous strike force out there and a wonderful manager who is doing well. I see a bright future for Barcelona and it’s a pleasure and an honour for us to test ourselves against them in a pre-season game.
Q: Are you looking forward to facing Luis Suárez and Mascherano in this game?
A: Not really (laughs), I don’t think anyone ever looks forward to playing against Luis Suárez, he is a fantastic talent and a very dangerous player. He is a good friend of mine, someone I enjoyed playing with and the same for Mascherano. He’s a little warrior, a top player who has done unbelievably well at Barcelona. I am looking forward to it, saying hello before and after the game, and also looking forward to testing myself in the game.
Q: You have a good relationship with Suárez off the field, how is he as a team-mate and a friend?
A: He is a fantastic team mate, probably the best player I have played with. He’s good guy, a family man away from the pitch, we keep in touch and keep supporting each other throughout our careers, so yes, he is a good friend of mine.
Q: What are you expectations playing with the Galaxy?
A: I expect to win. I am signing for the champions, I am settling in really well, I’m looking forward to a bright future. I have come here for one reason and one reason only and that is to win silverware. I’ll be very disappointed if I go home empty handed because I think the club, the staff and the players are set up to win and hopefully I can contribute to that.
Q: You recently made your debut for the Galaxy after 17 years at Liverpool, how did you feel playing for another team?
A: I admit it felt a bit strange at first, putting a new kit on in a new environment, playing for a different team but I enjoyed the occasion, it’s a new challenge for me and one that I am looking forward to. I am always going to miss Liverpool because I had 17 wonderful years in the first team and Liverpool is in my heart but for the short term I have to focus on the job here and that is to perform and be consistent for LA Galaxy.
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