Luis Enrique insists this afternoon’s Clasico will not decide who wins La Liga, despite Barcelona potentially falling nine points behind Real Madrid.
Enrique claimed after Barca’s lucky 1-1 draw with Real Sociedad last weekend that the Camp Nou showdown against Madrid “would be important and decisive”, but the Coach backtracked at his Press conference for the match.
“I’ve slept like a baby, certainly I’ll be going out for dinner [on the eve of the Clasico] with my wife and another couple,” said the Asturian.
“Madrid? They’ve been the same since Zidane take over: they’ll try to take advantage of quick breaks and set-pieces.
“Would a Madrid victory be decisive? It would be naive to think that a defeat will decide where the League is going.
“It’s a wonderful opportunity for us to beat Real Madrid and get closer to them.
“Madrid’s injuries? Bale’s an important player, but it doesn’t affect me because solutions on the pitch aren’t in accordance with a single player but rather the whole team.
“Are Barca favourites? It doesn’t concern me. We’re playing at home, it’s a beautiful game and we must make ourselves happy and also our fans.
“Iniesta’s return? It’s great news and if he plays as our captain, even better. We must have a great game and be at our best.
“Critics? It would be naive to think that by winning the Clasico, the criticism is going to stop, but criticism is always needed.
“Chapecoense, possible opponents for the next Gamper Trophy? Any action that can benefit a club with which we all share their pain, I’m sure Barca will agree, but it’s not up to me.”