offpitch | 2016-03-16
Koeman: ‘The important thing about shooting a penalty is to keep a cool head’
The Barça legend talked MSN and the penalties with Sport ahead of the match vs Arsenal
Former Barcelona player Ronald Koeman, known for being a penalty shootout specialist on his spell at Can Barça, talked in the Catalan radio program 'Què t'hi jugues' about what it takes to execute them perfectly.
“It’s important the quality of the shooter and that he keeps a cool head in the decisive moments, such as when kicking a penalty”, he assured but the Dutch coach belittled Barcelona’s dismal record from the spot this season, where they have missed half the penalties they have shot: “We must not make a big deal out of this because they create a lot of scoring chances. You need to start worrying when you don’t generate as many chances because that’s when the penalties are really important”.
“If they’re in a Champions League final and they reach the penalties shootout, I’m sure they wouldn’t miss as much as they have missed lately, because they’re footballers capable of keeping a cool head in the big stages. I don’t need to advise any of the trident members, they’re smart enough and they have the quality require to score. There’s nothing to worry about: if they don’t score from the penalty spot, they will do it in another way”, he added.
Koeman admitted he would “pay to coach this players” and that “you don’t need to teach them many things, they know by heart what they must do. The only thing you have to try is that they play as a team and respect each other, and that’s precisely what Luis Enrique has achieved, he’s accomplishing great things. “It’s impossible to beat this Barça. If there’s something remarkable about this squad that would be the hunger they still have and they have been properly trained by different coaches”.
About the upcoming clash between Barcelona and Arsenal for the second leg of the last-16 Champions League round, Koeman foresees that “on Wednesday we might witness a landslide because if Barça is at their peak, they’re capable of overcoming any team. Besides, with the first leg’s scoreboard, the tie is settled and Arsenal are not filled with confidence, they’ve just lost against Watford, they’re out of the FA Cup...it’s a difficult season for them”.
The current Southampton head coach is enjoying of a promising season in British lands but he also remembered he almost signed a contract to coach Barcelona back in 2003: “It’s true that in 2003 Laporta wanted me to join Barça but the club didn’t reach an agreement with Ajax and eventually they hired Frank Rijkaard”, he revealed.
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WRITTEN BY: Jaime Ibarra
Jaime is a chemical engineer from Venezuela who is passionate about football and Barça. He loves the club’s history and he has been an unconditional fan since Ronaldo “The Phenomenon” amazed the world with the Blaugrana colors.