Jordi Alba has dismissed the suggestion that he played for Spain whilst ill, prolonging his recovery upon returning to Barcelona.
The full-back returned from international duty in mid-September with flu, which lasted longer than expected and that the player has only just recovered from.
It has prompted the suggestion that the player prioritised playing for La Roja despite being ill, but he has denied this today.
“I felt absolutely awful when I came back from being with Spain, but not anymore. If not, I would not be playing,” began the former Valencia man at today’s Press conference.
“It was said that I played when I had a fever, but that is not true. With a fever you cannot play. Do not think that I am only concerned with just the national team or Barcelona.
“I had the opportunity to play at the Olympics and things have not gone as planned. I do not think though that fans have to be upset with my performances. I just had flu.
“I had a flu that was very hard. It’s true that Adriano has played more, but there is no such thing as starters and reserve players in this team.
“We are all important and we’re all getting minutes on the pitch. I’ve recovered from the flu and I want to play as much as possible, I want to feel important.
“The Coach is very aware of how things are going for me and that’s a good thing. He’s a very hard-working manager and he knows what he’s doing.”
The player was asked how his return to the club was going. Alba rejoined the team this summer, having previously developed as a youth at La Masia.
“My transition has been good. I’m lucky that I got to spend a lot of time here as a youth player and it’s been fairly easy to make the transition.
“There is an excellent atmosphere in the dressing room. I knew most of my teammates because I had faced them on the pitch and now I get to play alongside them.”
Barca visit Sevilla this Saturday night in a game that Alba recognises can be significant.
“We have an eight-point advantage, it’s important because they are a direct rival, but we have to focus on Sevilla, they are the team that have conceded the least amount of goals this season.
“Jesus Navas is a great player, he’s incredibly fast and he creates danger every match he plays in. It doesn’t matter who gets the start, we’ll try to stop him.”