Real Madrid Coach Jose Mourinho has insisted he would much rather win the League than the Super Cup in his pre match press conference.
Mourinho's side will be reunited with bitter adversaries Barcelona in tomorrow night's Super Cup first leg at Camp Nou. Real won only one of the club's six meetings in all competitions last season.
“Losing the Super Cup, especially to Barcelona, would give us the added motivation to go on and win the League, which is our main objective,” asserted the Portuguese tactician. “That is not saying we are not hungry to win this game, but I believe there are more important competitions and the result of this one will influence the development of our entire season.”
The Merengues boss confirmed that defender Pepe will not participate tomorrow, after suffering a serious head injury when he collided with goalkeeper Iker Casillas in the 1-1 draw with Valencia on Sunday.
“We do not want to risk Pepe’s health for the sake of a single game; it is only a football game after all. Raul Albiol will play instead and is an accomplished replacement.”
Despite a disappointing opening to their defence of the La Liga crown, the 49-year-old Coach is optimistic about his team's current form.
“The progression of several of our key players at the European Championships in June has hurt us slightly, but we knew that was going to happen. We must not make excuses or complain it is time to win.”
While the reigning champions have not been very active in signing players this summer, there have been several outgoing negotiations taking place. Mourinho discussed Nuri Sahin – who has reportedly joined Arsenal – Kaka and Ricardo Carvalho, who have been heavily linked with Milan and QPR respectively.
“We want Sahin to be part of our future plans, but not immediately. This season he will go to the Premier League which offers a different style of play to La Liga. I do not care whether he chooses Arsenal, Liverpool or Tottenham.
“Kaka is a very different situation to Sahin. I cannot confirm anything between Carvalho and OPR, I thought they had signed Michael Dawson already.”
Mourinho recognises that Barcelona psose a different threat under new boss Tito Vilanova, but remains confident Real can recreate their 2-1 victory at Camp Nou on league duty last April.
”We got the better of them at the Camp Nou last season, we can do it again. They have had a better pre-season, with more time to prepare, but we will be ready.
“They always bring a quality team with great players, but under Vilanova they are different in my opinion,” the former Inter boss concluded.