What's the story?
Barcelona manager Ernesto Valverde discusses keeping the team's focus on their Copa del Rey final game against Valencia, only a matter of hours away. According to him, he doesn't think too much about the future but rather chooses to focus on winning the domestic double.
In case you didn't know...
Barcelona's loss to Liverpool in the return leg of the Champions League semi-final sent the Catalans packing from the competition. Since their exit, pressure has built on Ernesto Valverde who oversaw the Blaugrana during their Champions League failures against AS Roma last year and Liverpool this year.
The heart of the matter
Although Lionel Messi and President Josep Bartomeu have backed and shown support for the head coach, a loss on against Valencia may turn the tables completely against Valverde.
Speaking at a news conference about the failure of the club in the Champions League and the final game ahead of them, Valverde said:
"I do not think too much about my future. The only thing that worries me is to win [against Valencia]. Every day is a battle. If you look around the coaches in La Liga, we are part of the show. We all get ups and downs. You only have to see what happened to [Valencia coach] Marcelino, who had a moment, or [Real] Madrid changing coach.
I do not know about Leo Messi defending me.
We are all aware that, when there is an elimination, we must all take responsibility, the players, the coaches, all of us. We are hurt, but we have to look forwards and face the consequences again.
I do not feel any more pressure. Why would I? I've always said that the club respects my work and it's always been like that. I have no complaints from the president or the board."
Valverde is putting all his focus on the Copa del Rey final which could ease the pressure from the supporters and give Barcelona a domestic double if they beat Valencia.Published 25 May 2019, 16:04 IST