Tuesday, 26 May 2009

Messi: "When we have the ball, we enjoy ourselves"

Barcelona player Lionel Messi gave an interview to Catalan newspaper La Vanguardia.

Why does this squad deserve it all?
Because of the year that Barça is having, for the football that it's playing, which is enjoyable for many people, whether or not if you're a Barça fan. I hear what many people have to say and they enjoy it as much as we do. This football deserves, at least, compensation with titles. All year we have been the best in the Liga, both in how we play and in our results.

A year ago you told this very publication that the team could win more than one title and you didn't even win one. Is it time to forget about the past?
We need to take advantage of the moment, because you never know if something like that could happen again. We have the opportunity to go down in history at a club as big as Barça. We will do it. We will give our all to win the Champions League.

What changed within the squad in order to achieve these results?
What has changed is the coach, who has much to do with everything that's happening even though he says that the responsible ones are us. Obviously, the arrival of Guardiola and his work, the energy that he shows, has been very important. He has done many things to change us and his arrival has made us succeed. Guardiola knows a lot, but, what's important to me is that he also knows how to transmit his knowledge to us. That's fundamental for any manager. When he tells you something, you know that you have to do it, because you know that it's the truth.

Rijkaard was also praised for his achievements, but has Guardiola done more?
They're different. Rijkaard to me was impressive, because he won many titles and made the team play phenomenally. He was the one that gave me my debut at 17 years old and he was the one that gave me confidence. Everyone has their style, not better or worse.

Have you seen a team play like this Barça?
The squad that won the league and the Champions League also played enjoyable and pretty football, but this team, if they win the Champions League, can be claimed to be better. I didn't witness the "dream team" era, so that's why I don't have any other squad to compare to. I'm only 21.

Not even Manchester United are close to this level?
Manchester United is a great team and has great players, but I think that Barça has a little more football in them.

If you could remain in any moment in this Liga campaign, which would you choose?
It's hard, but there have been many... but I think that the goal fest against Madrid was special. Even though we say that the match wasn't revenge for the "pasillo" and the 4-1 last season, what's true is that we had a grudge from that match. Being able to go to Madrid and win that way, will be remembered forever. I didn't want it to end.

Speaking of grudges, do you feel that there is one from the Champions League when you weren't able to play in the final in Paris?
Yes, in that campaign I couldn't enjoy myself, because after getting injured in the quarter finals, I couldn't play any more. Now I've been able to play everything, and now we're in the final and winning it would complete everything.

Now that some time has passed, were you very disappointed that day, in Paris, not being able to play?
Yes, but I was still very young and was still thinking about other things. I think that it was foolish for me to be mad. I should have enjoyed that day more than I really did, but they are moments in which you never know if they can happen again. I didn't even show up in the photo after the match and that was a mistake. I should have shown up, because I was still a part of that team.

What do you like most about the team?
That we always want to have the ball and with it, we want to make the opponent chase after it. When we have the ball, we enjoy ourselves and we see that the opponent gets gradually more nervous.

When you talk about how the team plays, you let out a smile. Is this sense of enjoyment that supporters feel something that you feel on the pitch?
Without a doubt, we're the first that enjoy ourselves and have fun on the pitch. And if you're winning, just imagine how much we enjoy it.

Do you agree with those that believe that this year they are seeing an even more complete Messi?
Well, I think that I've been playing the same as always but I've obviously improved on many things. This season I've learned much and I'm still learning.

You've scored more goals...
Yes, I've always been used to scoring goals, but I've never scored this many and I didn't expect it. It's thanks to the play of the team, because the forwards have many chances, and every forward in the world would like to be here.

translated by: al

this was the second part of this interview, you can read the first part here:
Messi: "Guardiola won me over in every aspect"

Read more:
Messi: "I would like to be a better header"
Messi, the true heir to Maradona's crown
Messi rejects record offer by Manchester City


Anonymous said...

Gonna wear my Messi shirt whole match =)

barca 4ever

ekar said...

lol cheak out this ad with et'o and keita:


OLALEKAN said...

speaks like the most sensible player in the world.

Anonymous said...


tero said...

our squad deserves to win tomorrow...especially messi and henry

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