Barcelona much more than just Lionel Messi – Setien

New Barcelona boss Quique Setien has reiterated that the club have many great players beyond Lionel Messi.

The 61-year-old was appointed on Monday night by the club on a two-and-a-half year contract, following the dismissal of Ernesto Valverde.

Setien has previously spoken at length of his admiration for the Catalan club and for Messi in particular and has even said that he would cry when the day of his retirement from playing came.

“I have said that about lots of players,” Setien responded in his introductory press conference at the club.

“I have enjoyed watching Barcelona for several years, watching them on television.

“To be able to manage the best in the world, and his team-mates – he has great team-mates – I have spoken to him and others, this role is an honour.

“I have always said that the admiration is one thing but reality is different. Everyone needs to have their place. Messi is Messi, Busquets is Busquets.”

Setien, who spent the past two seasons coaching Real Betis to consecutive top half finishes in La Liga, was also quizzed on his playing philosophy and what changes he may make to the squad.

It came in light of the news that the club’s number nine Luis Suarez would miss the next four months of action, which would likely rule him out for the remainder of the current campaign.

Setien – who integrated B team players Junior Firpo, Fabian Ruiz and Loren Moron into the first-team at Betis – said he would take the same approach to youth players at the Camp Nou.

“Right now we have to think about the players we have,” Setien responded.

“The important thing is the philosophy. We might change things to our system, but we need to evaluate a lot and speak with all the players. But the philosophy won't change.

“The reality is that until you're inside a club you don't know everything about it, everything is new. There's a lot to talk about. There is an extraordinary academy here and those players will train with us little by little.

“If players deserve it, we'll promote them. Whenever a young player comes up, they bring energy and that infects the first-team squad in a positive way.”

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