Alba eager for Valencia return

Jordi Alba is keen to move on from the midweek Clasico with Real Madrid, excited for Barcelona’s trip this weekend to face his old side Valencia.

Alba transferred last summer from Mestalla to the Camp Nou, after four years playing for Los Che’s senior side and, in returning with the Catalans this weekend, is hopeful for a nice reception.

“I’m very eager to return to Mestalla,” the 23-year-old enthused to gathered reporters this week.

“Valencia gave me the opportunity to play in Primera Division and gave me the chance to be the player I am today.

“I’m very grateful and I’m looking forward to seeing the people and fans.

“It was a dream to come back to Barca this summer and I’m playing at a good level. It feels like I’ve been here for years. I hope to stay a very long time.

“I’m at the best club in the world and I play for the team that plays the best football. I’m very content, I can’t ask for more.”

Alba notably was on the receiving end of a tackle from Michael Essien during Barcelona’s 1-1 draw at the Santiago Bernabeu in midweek.

The Ghanaian was beaten to the ball by the full-back and inadvertently caught the back of his leg with his studs.

“Yes I still have the scars, but I'm not going to show them,” joked Alba to reporters.

“I'm also a player that can get hot headed very quickly and then I'm fine again. At the end of the day everyone has their own way of playing. There is tension in these games.

“It's a very difficult game to referee this game. But we are not looking back on it, we are focused on getting the ball and trying to score as many goals.

“It was a great game. In the second half there were moments when Barca has possession and totally dominated.

“It is true that any mistake will see them create a chance, because they are very quick on the counterattack, but we played a great game and deserved more.

“We were very good in defence and we could stop them, it is a shame about the goal at the end.

“The fact that we have home advantage for the return leg is important and the two teams are very eager to get to the final.

“Before that match, however, we have a lot of important games in the Liga and Champions League.”

Tags Alba Clasico Essien