Xavi Hernandez has reiterated that Barcelona’s philosophy of play is the same and that the players are working to improve on a ‘collective level’.
The Catalans are unbeaten so far this term, but have seen debate continue to grow on their playing style, which has invited greater possession and chances created for opponents.
Ahead of travelling out Real Betis this Sunday, the team’s vice-captain considered the situation at hand.
“It is important to finish well this cycle of seven or eight games between La Liga and the Champions League,” began Xavi, in reference to the team’s trip out to the Benito Villamarin ahead of the November international break.
“The balance is positive and I think that we have proven to be excellent in terms of the results, but we can be improved at a collective level. Even so, we are on a good line.
“Physically we are fine. We are playing a good game, perhaps we are not so fine or at an excellent standard, though.
“Our philosophy is clear. We have possession of the ball, play offensively, play good football and from there look to achieve our goals. At no time should we think about changing the style.
“I do not believe that it has changed at all. Instead, I feel more important than before. I have more of the ball than ever, I feel I participate more. I feel good physically, I have a contract to 2016 and I hope to perform.
“We are at a good level and we know the demands for Barca. But we have to be self-critical so that we can improve. Perhaps we have dropped a notch, but we are pushing to return to where we once were.”
A couple of the players were critical last weekend of the condition of the playing surface at the Camp Nou.
“That the pitch is in good condition is essential to us and to our game. It was poor the other day against Espanyol, but it has been improving. We have been assured of that.”
Xavi will enjoy the international break in Barcelona, having been omitted from Spain’s squad to play Equatorial Guinea and South Africa next week.
“I talked to Vicente del Bosque and we decided that it was best to rest.
“The World Cup? A footballer does not think about the World Cup. First you have to well with your club and then look to be on the national team.”