Speaking to the press after training this morning, José Manuel Pinto discussed how the first week has gone. He says the squad “is very keen, like every year … everything is rolling ahead.” He feels things are much the same as ever under Tito Vilanova, adding that “it is the same philosophy”.

Still describing the new head coach, Pinto said that “perhaps he stayed in the background in the past, but he was always one of the people who organised the training sessions … It’s just that now he’s more noticeable as the spokesman … Now the weight of responsibility is on him, although he was still very important before.”

De la Fuente different

There is also a new goalkeeping coach this season, José Ramon de la Fuente. Pinto feels that “the work method is very different with him … I’m getting good feelings about it. I like the way he focuses work on supporting the legs. It’s a very different method, but I think it’ll help us to improve … Everyone has their ways, and he doesn’t use hurdles as much”.

Ambition to compete

Asked whether he has asked the new coach for his views, Pinto is sure Tito Vilanova “will take the decisions that most help the team … But I am ambitious, competitive and never settle for anything.” He added that, as ever, his target will be to take Víctor Valdés’ place.

Reserve keepers Bañuz and Masip were at training as well today. He knows the former from previous sessions, describing him as “a top quality youth player … He has great leg control, which is important in a team that plays like Barça … He is young, and he has to learn, but he’s keen and very quick.”


Happy for Villa

Pinto also spoke about David Villa’s form after he joined the training session today, albeit while monitored by a fitness coach. “I’d be saying nothing new if I said he is important and we need him. He’s in top form, and I’m happy about that. We’re very pleased to have him back”. Pinto also said that “we are very happy and excited that Messi will be with us from the first day of the preseason”.

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