Credit: FC Barcelona

Luis Enrique: I don't like pre-seasons

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Luis Enrique: I don't like pre-seasons

In spite of the three losses against Manchester United, Chelsea (in a penalty shootout) and Fiorentina, Luis Enrique brings out positive conclusions for this pre-season: “I’ve seen some things improved in comparison to last season. The playing idea is there and we’re trying to polish it in order to be unpredictable no matter how much the rivals know how are we going to play.”

He warned though about the need to improve the defense intensity: “We have to defend well when we’re close to our area. Even if we are pressuring really well, we have to minimize the damages when the opponent arrives to our area. If we manage to achieve that, we’ll be closer to victories.”

Another issue he remarked was the lack of definition in these first clashes: “We have to be more effective because that’s what makes the difference, but now Messi and Neymar have arrived and I’m sure we’re going to improve on that matter”.

The coach is eager to embark on a new season, which starts off next August 11 against Sevilla in the European Super Cup: “I don’t like pre-seasons, I never did. And even that I don’t fully train now. But I prefer the competition”. He added: “It’s hard to say what is the Super Cup starting XI, which is a title very appealing to us. I want to give minutes to all the players, see how they are, if there’s any problems physically and improve our performance, that’s my concern. We would love to win the Gamper too as we have always tried, because we don’t like to lose”. And about Unai Emery’s team he said: “They do magic every season given the high number of sold and signed players, but they sure will put up a fight and be competitive. It’ll be a complicated and battled match”.

Before Sevilla comes Roma in the Hans Gamper Trophy, a rival Luis Enrique knows well given his tenure there as the head coach: “Training Roma made me better in every aspect and I’m very thankful for the opportunity they gave me. It was a year of total revolution there, new directors and a new football idea I tried to apply. I cherish a great memory, it was a very positive season.”

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