Zubizarreta / PHOTO: MIGUEL RUIZ - FCB

Andoni Zubizarreta, who travelled with the 23 man squad, spoke to the media shortly beforte boarding the flight to Manchester. “The first knockout match is never an easy game, and given the quality of the opponent this year, this promises to be a top quality match”, said Andoni Zubizarreta shortly before boarding the flight to Manchester. The FC Barcelona director of sport added that “teams of this level are outstanding not just because of what they can do as a unit, but also because of the capacity of individual players to resolve situations”.

As far as he sees things, “we have to sense that we are Barça and that we have our own way of understanding and playing football … We have never lost our confidence in Messi and he has proved himself time and again both in training and in matches.”

Zubizarreta was also asked how much Barça’s whole season depends on the outcome of this one match, and responded that “people forget that we have already won the Spanish Supercup this season. If we hadn’t won it, and given our circumstances at that time, then that may have affected our whole season. Our position in the league, qualifying for the cup final, all these things affect the outcome of the season, not just this match”.

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