Eduardo Berizzo has asked for cool heads, intelligence and patience from Celta Vigo when they contest their Copa del Rey semi-final tie against Alaves.
Celta’s reward for slaying Real Madrid in the Copa quarter-finals was avoiding Barcelona and Atletico Madrid in the last four, but Berizzo made it clear Alaves would still “demand two big performances” from his side.
“Alaves will be a difficult team to face,” the Coach said at a Press conference for Saturday’s trip to Leganes in La Liga.
“They’ll make it uncomfortable, plus they’re organised [at the back] and dangerous due to their forwards. Therefore, I expect a very complicated tie.
“Alaves will demand two big performances from us. These knockout games carry a significant emotional burden and the team that manages it best will be favoured.
“We’ll need to play smartly in the first leg to ensure we’re still alive in the second leg.
“The only thing I wanted was for us to finish the tie in Balaidos, but it wasn’t to be.
“We go into [the tie] from a great victory over a great rival, Real Madrid, and instead of easing up now, we have to be ambitious and fill ourselves with strength for what we’ve achieved.
“In no way can we believe that what we’ve achieved so far will alleviate the work we have ahead of us.
“Our previous meeting with Alaves in January? It’ll act as a reference.
“They’re a well-structured team that we struggled to unlock in that game. We beat them with a lot of patience, and we’ll need that in the match next week.
“Leganes? At their place, they’re very strong so it’ll be a very good footballing test for us. “Regardless of the atmosphere and the past, we’ll need to beat Leganes to keep climbing the table.”