PHOTO: MIGUEL RUIZ - FCB

After the 0-3 victory over Alavés in the away leg of the Round of 32 of the Copa del Rey, Tito Vilanova was very proud of the attitude his players displayed throughout the 90 minutes: “These players have won it all, they come here and they put in a great performance against a team that plays in Segunda División B. It’s worth taking notice of the effort they put in.” In the same vein, the manager said that his players were warned that “in these first rounds you must be very careful,” and he reiterated that “the players played a very serious match.”

“You can never believe a fixture is closed”

Tito Vilanova is prudent ahead of the return leg at the Camp Nou despite Barça’s three-goal advantage over the Basque side: “You can never believe that a fixture is over before the second game has ended.” He added: “It’s up to us to do the same thing we did here in the return leg, we have to take the match seriously.” On Alavés’ performance, the manger said that “they have a good side, they were very clear on what they had and they were always in the match.” With that said, the manager believes that Barça “always had control of the match.”

Vilanova congratulated Dani Alves on his return and he said that “the game served him [Alves] well” and that the player is “in shape physically.” On Sergi Roberto he commented that “he would have no problems playing for the first team [...] he’s consistent in every match that he plays. Barça have a good player for years to come.”

Lastly, he talked about Villa and the player’s situation: “I could have let him play a bit longer. But he was worn out defending Alavés’ counters and we had to give some minutes to Tello.”