Valverde: It’s like a League game

Ernesto Valverde is expecting a ‘competitive’ Copa del Rey meeting with Celta Vigo, and he has likened it to a Primera Division encounter.

These two top flight sides clash in the Round of 32 of the Spanish Cup on Friday evening, playing out a first leg at Balaidos before 12 days later determining the outcome at San Mames.

“We are starting out in the Cup and we are up against a team in the Primera Division who are doing things right,” stated Valverde to reporters today.

“It should be a very competitive tie. It is similar to in La Liga, we have to minimise the mistakes, because they can see us lose the tie. We are also aware that it is 180 minutes or more, but we face it witht eh seriousness we have for the League.

“Will there be changes? We’ll see, we’ll assess how some of the players are tomorrow. There could be some changes. Often when there are changes it is for the tightness of the dates. This is a weekend and it suits us to maintain a high competitive level. It is not the same for the second leg, which is played three days after a League match [against Rayo Vallecano].

“Is the League meeting with Celta a reference for this game? Yes, for the style of play and for how the game was set up. But it was also a very special event, the first game at the new San Mames, everything was conditioned by that event.

“Their system and style of play will be maintained and at Balaidos I imagine they will be the same, they attack well and have player supporting from midfield.”

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