Mascherano is having another fine season at Barça / MIGUEL RUIZ-FCB

Javier Mascherano has discussed happenings at FC Barcelona during the presentation of the eleventh edition of R’, a book that he is lending his image to this year.

On the team’s form

“It is not easy to play every game at the same level. Although we might not shine in every game, we’re playing at a competitive level and are in contention for every title. It is all in our own hands right now. We went through difficult times to stay in all three competitions and the team has shown what it is made of.

On his team-mates

“I wasn’t surprised that Xavi got a standing ovation. He has had many ovations because of what he represents to this institution. He holds the record for the most titles won with FC Barcelona and is one of the biggest heroes in the history of the club. It would be great if he could stay here because of all he offers. He is everything being an FC Barcelona player is about – the way he behaves and the example he sets for youngsters”.

Alves has been one of the best players this club has ever had, he’s a great performer. I’d like him to stay. He’s an amazing person, a real fun guy and very professional”

Sergi Roberto is a lad who adapts to many positions, not just behind the midfield. He offers a lot of options to a coach. Luis Enrique has entrusted him with that position. It’s more competition and means we all play better. It can only be good for the team and that shows week after week”

On the shared position with Busquets

“We are two very different players. I think it’d be impossible to replace Sergio because he’s so good, he’s a midfielder made for this team. The difference between my football and his is that Sergio is more positional, he holds his position well and that makes our play more fluid. I try to make the team more physical, to be more on the lookout for ways to help others. That doesn’t mean we can’t play together, we’re very different central midfielders and Sergi’s style is much more suited to the way FC Barcelona play than mine”

“When I get to play I try to do the best I can. When I don’t, I try to train hard and help and support the ones that are playing”

On playing Sevilla

“The nest game is as important as the other seven. They’re three points but a difficult trip. They’re playing very well, especially at home. They’ll make things very hard for us. All the games we have to come are going to be difficult against teams that have a lot to play for”

On goalscoring defenders

“I have never gone crazy about not scoring. I haven’t scored many goals. Not even when I play in midfield. But if we do have defenders that can help out in the attack, then so much the better”