Luis Enrique is confident that Barça can get a good result on Wednesday / MIGUEL RUIZ - FCB

Luis Enrique spoke to the media after training on Tuesday, where the main topic of the questions was Wednesday’s Spanish Cup semi final first leg against Villarreal. The team’s form has been splendid recently, and that means the Asturian has every right to feel optimistic about their chances of making the grand final. And playing Villarreal so recently in a league game, a 3-2 win just nine days ago, has meant preparations for this one have been easier than usual. Luis Enrique already has a very good idea what kind of team he is going to have to deal with.

The following are the key comments made by the FC Barcelona coach in the Ciutat Esportiva pressroom today:

On Wednesday’s opponent Villarreal:

“It’s been fairly easy to prepare because we have the recent league game as a reference point. We know what we need to do better and how we need to make things hard for our opponent”.

“We will need to be more consistent this time. We can’t allow them to have as many chances as they did in the league game”.

“We know that this is a big game for them. This is the first time they have ever reached the cup semi-finals and they’re having an excellent championship”.

Objectives for the game:

“We have to play with the same kind of intensity that we would in the league. That means that our only plan will be to win the match”.

To do that, we need to play better than out opponents and try not to let in any goals. And however the first leg ends, all we will be thinking about doing in the second will be winning that one too”.

The team’s excellent form:

“We have seen different versions of the team as the season has progressed, but what a manager is always hoping is for his team to get better and better”.

“When the results are positive, then the team’s confidence and morale is always going to be higher as well. I like the way the players react when they go behind in a match. They have the resources and they go into each challenge as if was their last. It’s always easier to win games when you have such top quality players as these in your squad. They know they can beat anyone”.

“We like to control matches, but the circumstances don’t always allow that. But we never sit back on a lead. We keep going out in search of ways to create damage and make use of any spaces that teams leave open at the back”.

“It isn’t easy to have fun on the pitch because the opposition are out three too. But that is what we try to do. However, some games are not as gratifying as others, and you must be prepared for that”.

Personal feelings:

“I have never felt that my job has been on the line since I’ve been manager at this club. You are always going to lose some games, that’s only normal in any football season”.

“Managers don’t get to enjoy matches. Once one is over, you’re already thinking about the next. For a manager, the happiness doesn’t come until the season has ended and you have achieved your targets.”


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