squad | 2015-06-30
Busquets Interviewed by El País: I play to bring solutions to the team
The catalan midfielder spoke about his personal life, winning the treble and his teammates
Sergio Busquets grew up with the Blaugrana codes, guided by his father, former Barcelona goalkeeper, Carlos Busquets. As a child, he trained admiring the “Dream Team” and seven years ago made his debut with Barça and the Spanish national team. Often overlooked outside the pitch, inside, his teammates and rivals point him as one of the best midfielders in the world. He doesn’t talk much but when he does, he always makes sense.
What do you like to read?
I read very little. Sometimes, if someone recommends me a book, I read it. And some days, a newspaper. I’d be lying if I say I don’t read sports newspapers, but I read them very little because I live everything related to football personally and I’m aware of what really happens and what is made up. Many times they give more information than what is real. Before, that put me in a bad mood and I prefered to not even look at those newspapers, but now I understand their dynamic and I read them more.
Does having a girlfriend give you a new perspective?
It changes the way you understand things. Before I lived my waking hours thinking about football. Now, I get home and I have other things to think about, different concerns. You clear your head more, you take things in another way and live more relaxed. In a way that’s what personal stability, age and experience give you. You get annoyed less. Well...not on the pitch.
The first half in the Berlin final, was it the best you’ve ever played in your career?
No. I don’t think so, I’m sure I’ve had better ones.
But you didn’t lose the ball even once, what does that tell you?
That I didn’t play bad. I’m sure I’ve had better matches than Berlin, but I wouldn’t know which one. Given my position on the field, if I lose a ball I generate a problem to the team. So I can’t lose a ball, I’m here to bring solutions. My position on the field is complicated.
Where do you get your common sense on the pitch?
I guess it comes with my personality. I’m like that in my life. I try to give common sense to the game. I believe you learn that at home from childhood.
Ángel María Villar [Spanish FA president] asks how does it feel to win three titles in a season?
You feel a lot of things. The joy of winning is permanent, you can’t take it away. When you lose the world stops. We are footballers. Sometimes, I’d like to be one just when I’m training or playing but that’s impossible. I live with that everytime.
Are you a full time culé or just a few hours a day?
I am a culé every time I think about it. Does that make me different? I don’t know, I guess it does and it doesn’t, it makes you feel the things more of your own, when you win is better but when you lose is worse. If I could choose, I want to be a culé 24 hours a day.
You have won two trebles now, how have you lived that?
They have been different. We thought nobody was going to achieve that ever again. You battle for it everyday and you face not only Real Madrid, but Valencia and Atlético and you play against the champions of the best leagues in the Champions League, and at the end, you achieve a season to remember. The only thing you want is more, more and more. And we have players of an incredible talent, a young squad and one of a kind opportunity to extend this performance in time. In the Champions League final, excluding Alves, Mascherano and Iniesta, no one else was 30 years old. Marc [ter Stegen] is really young, Ney, Alba and the rest of us, we are between 23 and 28 years old. This team is here to stay, if we are healthy and work as one. We are not going to win the treble every season, no team is invincible but we have a huge potential.
What is the difference among this treble and the one with Guardiola in 2009?
This one has more value because football has evolved, now the rivals respect us more, they more prepared than before and the feeling is that is harder to win. The previous one was more surprising, we came from a spell where we didn’t win anything in two seasons. Now it’s different, they’re waiting for us. Guardiola had the skill to convince us and revolutionize the game, this time it wasn’t like that, but we have acquired new approaches.
And is this a better Messi?
Yes, Messi surpasses himself every year. A tactical change that benefited the team and him has also occurred. In the last few seasons, he played as a false nine and that took the rivals by surprise, he generated amazement because there were more open spaces. Now, when he plays in the right band, he progresses from there and makes the field huge by opening spaces. He passes espectaculars diagonals to Alba, for instance. That’s reinventing yourself. Leo evolves and he does it with the team. Leo is unstoppable, that’s why he is the best.
Have you reinvented yourself?
Well, not as much as Leo. I have gained experience, in that way I have, but not on the level Leo has.
Do you run less or more now?
Look at the numbers. I’m among the top three players who run the most kilometers per match. It doesn’t seem like it, but I run a lot. In the Champions League final, the one with most kilometers was Jordi and then me. I’m not fast, so if I move is because I’m looking for position. In that final, the one who ran the most was Pirlo, that tells you everything.
After a match like that Berlin final, what does the team say in the locker room?
It wasn’t time to talk, it was a time to celebrate. People aren’t thankful enough. But between us we know what we have.
Do you work for the others?
I work to bring solutions to the team, that’s why I play. And Leo does it too, otherwise he would score even more goals. He would be Pichichi every season if he thought only about him. The evidence is the penalty he gave to Neymar that day against Córdoba. If each one of us looked for our interests, we wouldn’t win titles. When everyone does that, it doesn’t work.
Among your teammates and the Barça’s and Spanish Federation’s employees you’re known for being a nice guy, can you explain that to me?
Anyone who doesn’t know me and watches me on the pitch will think otherwise. I have been raised that way. I was born where I was born. I have grown up amongst nice people. At the end of the day you have a better time, but I don’t go around pleasing people.
Do you consider yourself a weird player?
No, I accept I’m different. For instance, in the world we live in the fact I don’t have Facebook or Twitter is weird, I give you that, but I don’t feel comfortable with that and I don’t need it to be happy. I’m not better or worse than anybody else.
Do you imagine life without Xavi?
It’s difficult. It has already happened in the national team and it’s an advantage. It’s hard time imagine the locker room without Xavi, it’s going to be odd. He has always left something, everyday, his presence is noticeable. He is of the first to arrive and always said something to the squad. In the hard times he stood up for us, he made jokes...we will feel his absence.
Does Xavi leaving represent a exigency for you?
I understand it as a greater responsibility. Puyol, Valdés and Xavi have left in the last two years and we have to fill that space, that’s obvious. I feel responsible for that. There is Iniesta, Piqué, Mascherano and I guess I will have to take some responsibilities too.
Speaking of Piqué, does people boo him because of a certain joke with colombian singer or because he plays at Barcelona?
I’m not gonna be honest because I can’t. I just want this to stop. If we play with the national team is because we have a commitment and we want people to support us with a positive vibe. It’s awkward when a teammate gets booed. They still think they are going only after Gerard but it affects us all.
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