Barcelona boss Xavi blasts state of LaLiga pitches


Xavi Hernandez referred to as for higher laws of taking part in surfaces after he was criticised for complaining concerning the state of Getafe’s pitch final weekend.

Barcelona had been held to a goalless draw on the Coliseum Alfonso Perez, with Xavi moaning after the sport concerning the dry, lengthy grass not being helped by taking part in within the afternoon solar.

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The Barca coach has commonly criticised pitches which aren’t conducive to a passing recreation and insists he’ll proceed to take action regardless of how a lot others mock him.

“I am criticised for everything,” Xavi stated in a information convention forward of Sunday’s recreation towards Atletico Madrid. “It does not annoy me at all. No matter how many memes they make about me, I won’t keep quiet.

“A dry pitch doesn’t profit us. It is a query for [Getafe coach Quique] Sanchez Flores: Why not water the pitch? Why have the grass longer than regular?

“I won’t stop until there is a rule in place for playing surfaces. There is in other sports. In golf, if the grass is long, they cut it. If Lebron [James] has a wet court, they dry it. If it rains in tennis, they stop.

“And [in football] we may make puddles, however who does that profit? I will not hold quiet. It’s no surprise youthful followers do not watch complete video games. If we wish to placed on a present, we have now to take care of the game.”

Barca’s draw against Getafe was their second successive stalemate in LaLiga and their third winless game in a row in all competitions, but Xavi said the result was not important.

“We may have drawn [with a better pitch], it is not about how the sport ended, I additionally say it after we win,” he added.

Barca remain 11 points clear at the top of LaLiga with just nine games to play, but, after back-to-back draws, Xavi wants to see a reaction from his players against Atletico at Camp Nou on Sunday as they close in on a first league title since 2019.

“We haven’t gained our final two league video games so we’re additional motivated for this one,” Xavi said. “LaLiga is at stake. We should say: ‘We are right here.’ We have to point out our identification.

“We have not been at the level we want for a few matches, so the message is clear. We must be recognisable, return to our roots, lose fewer balls, generate more in attack and play with a high defensive line.”

Atletico are the shape staff in LaLiga. They are unbeaten in 13 matches since shedding to Barca in January, profitable their final six, and have climbed to 3rd within the desk, simply two factors behind Real Madrid.

“They are a team with a lot of personality,” Xavi stated. “It’s great to see how [coach Diego Simeone] imposes that on them. They have returned to form in recent weeks when no one expected it, competing with a lot of soul. It makes them dangerous.”

Midfielders Pedri and Frenkie de Jong are each match to function towards Atletico following spells on the sidelines, however Ousmane Dembele just isn’t but able to return.

Xavi has additionally referred to as up 15-year-old Lamine Yamal, who may change into the youngest participant to ever play for Barca within the league if he performs.

“He has a lot of talent even if he is only 15,” Xavi stated. “He has character, talent, is good one-on-one. He is strong. He is someone that could mark an era at this club.”

Meanwhile, talking in his prematch information convention on Saturday, Simeone backed his reverse quantity.

Barca’s improved defensive report in LaLiga — conceding simply 9 targets in 29 video games this season — and the truth that 9 of their league wins have led to a 1-0 scoreline have led some to criticise Xavi’s staff’s model of play.

“I like this Barcelona a lot,” Simeone stated. “They’ve grown hugely since Xavi arrived … They’ve grown game by game and they’re having a great season in the league.

“They’ve improved in defence and that is a plus for a method of play which is able to at all times be attacking, as a result of Barcelona have at all times had that model traditionally, with the traits of the gamers they’ve had.

“Improving the defensive side — with players who have attacking characteristics — adds value to the work that Xavi is doing.”

Simeone has by no means gained a league match at Camp Nou in his 11 years as Atletico coach.

“Barcelona in all these years have had great squads and great teams,” he stated. “It’s been hard for us, as the statistics show, to be able to win. But we’ve always competed well.”


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