José Manuel Pinto talked to the press this morning about the importance of Wednesday’s Cup match against Córdoba: “When you play against a team from Segunda it seems easy and that everything is done before the starting whistle. I, however, believe that it will be a complicated tie and that we’ll have to give it our all to make it to the next round.” He added: “I know some of the Córdoba players and it’s obvious that many of them are fantastic footballers. We’ll study them in depth in the coming days, but it should be said that they have a great team.”

Pinto went on to say that he doesn’t want to be known as Barça’s keeper in the Cup: “To say something like that is disrespectful to me and to Víctor. Valdés is a fantastic competitor and I’m sure he’d also like to play in the tournament. To compete in the Cup, you have to earn your spot.” He added that he hopes Valdés wins another Zamora Trophy: “There’s still a lot to go in La Liga and a lot of keepers are in contention for the prize. For me, Valdés is the best keeper in the world. The Zamora is an award that also recognises the collective effort of the team, and it’s an award I had the privilege of winning once.”

Speechless when asked about Leo Messi

When asked about Leo Messi’s feat of breaking Gerd Müller’s record, Pinto said, “I’m happy for him.” He added: “Leo is a very calm person. What he’s done is beyond the reach of a lot of footballers. He has so many virtues that it’s hard to define him. His new record makes us all very happy and we’re very pleased with what he brings to the team. It’s impossible to define Messi with just one word.”

Pinto also noted that he’s satisfied with his team’s performance against Betis last night at the Benito Villamarín: “When you’re in it for the long haul you have to take it one step at a time. This Sunday we showed that this team doesn’t shy away from a difficult challenge.”

Proud that the Club want to renew his contract

Finally, Pinto explained that he’s proud and excited that FC Barcelona have indicated that they want to renew the his contract: “I like to live in the moment. Right now my family and I are extremely happy here. The fact that the Club declared their intention [to renew the Pinto’s contract] fills me with pride. It means that I’m still valued; that I earned this with my hard work. My agent and the Club will discuss the details. I just have to focus on training and playing at the highest level.”

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