Valverde: Catalan derby always special

Barcelona Coach Ernesto Valverde has explained the Catalan derby has always been ‘very special’ to him ahead of Thursday’s Copa del Rey clash.

The Blaugrana tactician previously held the reins at Espanyol and his current side trail 1-0 following the first leg at the RCDE Stadium last week.

“The derby is a match which has always been very special for me,” Valverde told reporters on Wednesday.

“Both teams are always desperate to win this game and both will put a lot of preparation into this game, it is hugely significant for both clubs.

“We are more motivated than ever having lost the first leg and we must put even more effort and preparation than usual for this clash.

“We are not in a good situation in the terms of the scoreboard but we have been behind before and bounced back, so we will work hard to reverse the situation.”

“Yerry Mina? We have high expectations of him and with Thomas Vermaelen’s injury we are hoping he can be integrated into the squad at a good rate.”

Tags Ernesto Valverde