Ernesto Valverde insists the attitude of his Barcelona players has been ‘extraordinary’, despite dropping points in their last two games.
Barca’s 2-2 draw with Girona last weekend was followed by a surprise 2-1 defeat to Leganes, who were bottom of La Liga before Wednesday’s match.
Nonetheless, the Coach said a Press conference for Sunday’s visit of Athletic Bilbao: “My players’ attitude has been extraordinary.
“When you lose, there are always small earthquakes. Against Girona the team had the desire to go for the match, even with 10 men, and against Leganes there were phases when we played very well.
“I haven’t seen much difference from one week to another. It’s very unusual for a team to conceded two goals in a minute.
“From that point of view it’s an accident, but we have to improve. There’s no doubt about that. I’m more worried about the first Leganes goal than the second.
“Ultimately, mistakes will always exist. I see Pique very focused on football. There was a lot of talk about our formation last season, but I don’t think it’s that important.
“Umtiti’s in some discomfort, although I don’t know when he’ll be back. A very intense and physical match awaits us.
“Athletic are a team who press you for 90 minutes, so it’s crucial that we overcome that first wave of it.
“Berizzo’s a guy who doesn’t fool anyone. He’s a Coach who wants to dominate games and take them away from his opponents.
“He did it at Celta and Sevilla and he’s doing it now at Athletic. His teams have character, they always want the ball and have great spirit.”
Barca squad to face Athletic: Ter Stegen, Cillessen; Semedo, Pique, Rakitic, Busquets, Coutinho, Arthur, Suarez, Messi, Dembele, Rafinha, Lenglet, Alba, Munir, Sergi Roberto, Arturo Vidal, Vermaelen