Ahead of the home game against Cádiz in LaLiga, Ronald Koeman spoke in the pre-match press conference about the PSG game, Piqué’s fitness, and where the team needs to improve.
Here’s what Koeman had to say in full:
After a defeat it is always good to have a match later to show that we can be better and get a better result. We have a good track record in LaLiga and we have to continue. We have a lot of ambition and we have to react.
On whether he has given any message to the team
As I said after the game, the world does not end. We have to analyze the games, our mistakes, and improve things. The other day we were low with our game with the ball and gave options to them to counterattack. I hope we come out strong and win the game.
On the team’s objectives
We are still in the three competitions. The Champions League is very complicated, but in the Cup if we are more effective we can come back. I think we can get through the tie. In LaLiga we have a good track record, but it depends on those who are above us in the standings. I am not so negative. We are Barça and we have good players to react to anything.
On which is the priority
Every game that we have ahead. It is not good to think about Sevilla’s match in the Cup because before we have three games before that and they are important. Each game is very important, especially after the other day. For me we are on the way to being strong and trying to win things. The objective is to win every game.
On whether he will ask for Haaland
I have my ideas for the future of the club, but I have to wait to know who will be the president. Then we will talk about the future.
On the bad results against the big teams
We won away against Juve and lost at home. We lost against PSG, but we can win in Paris. It’s a game and it’s difficult to say what we lack against the greats. I don’t think we can’t compete with the greats, we’ve been close. I don’t see one team much more than another, we can beat anyone.
On how he has raised the team’s morale
It doesn’t bother me that there are harsh comments and the press that draws conclusions. My job is to prepare the game for each game. Above all, you have to give encouragement and show pride in being a Barcelona player. You have to show that we can improve and win.
On whether LaLiga’s level has dropped
No. I think it’s a moment with games with Spanish teams that have not been able to win. It’s too easy to single these games out. Spanish teams are strong, no conclusions of this type can be drawn.
On Piqué’s physical condition
Gerard is fine. We did well to make him play 60-65 minutes the other day, he had no problems. He has trained without problems and is available.
On how the team reacted after the defeat against PSG
It’s normal that you feel a bit low after what happened. In the first training session on Friday you could notice a lower atmosphere and that’s good, because it cannot be that a result like that doesn’t affect you. Today I have seen them as before and with a lot of desire to win the game.
On what is different in today’s football
Today, the physical part is very important. You have to play games with great intensity and a very tight schedule. At Barça we have always looked for technical players and we have to find some balance. The team has played very well this season, we always create many opportunities. We can improve the aspect of defending and having legs in the team.
On the team’s weakness in defending set pieces
We analyze the 1-3 foul and leave a space to defend. We have to be more concentrated. In this matter we don’t have the strength and the height. We have to be more concentrated and not make useless fouls that can harm us.
On Piqué’s anger
During a game there is a lot of emotion and there are always things that cannot be accepted. It is good that there are people like this in the team. There are moments of high tension in a game. If it happens during a game I don’t have a problem, I like it, but after that you have to communicate. I don’t like my players to be quiet and see what happens.
He has had some injuries, but is physically fine now. He is 19 years old and needs to learn. He has to be more focused and there are several moments in the game where he is not 100 percent focused. There are a lot of positives that he can contribute, but he must learn. It is a big step to come from Holland to Barcelona.