Barcelona defender Gerard Pique: El Clasico should have been played

Barcelona defender Gerard Pique has dismissed claims extra rest will benefit his side over Real Madrid for December’s El Clasico.

The match had been scheduled to be played at the Blaugrana’s Camp Nou stadium on 26 October but due to the current volatility of the political situation in Catalonia, La Liga asked that the game be reversed to Madrid’s Santiago Bernabeu stadium.

This request ruled out in favour of a postponement as both clubs had rejected the switch of venue and agreed on a new date, along with the Spanish FA.

The rearranged fixture has been confirmed for Wednesday 18 December with an 8pm kick-off local time.

However, the Catalan giants will have 29 hours more rest for the game as they travel to Real Sociedad for a 4.15pm (Spanish time) kick-off on Saturday 14 December with Madrid playing in Valencia the following day at 9pm.

“They will have more for the next game then…there is always some kind of complaint and the calendar is what it is,” Pique told Cadena Cope, as cited by Diario AS.

“The game had to have been played the day it had to be played. If it had been the other way around, Barça would have complained (for having less rest). The players are used to playing games two or three days apart. At Barça-Madrid, you look at everything with a magnifying glass.

“Surely if we look at other times we have had less rest than Madrid. We did not propose to postpone the game. This started with (La Liga president, Javier) Tebas who proposed to play in Madrid and from there we played on December 18. We don't complain.

“What about the 26 October date? Nothing would have happened the day we had to play. At one specific point there were people who rebelled against the police, but nothing happened at the Camp Nou and I am convinced that nothing will happen.”

Tags El Clasico Gerard Pique