The captain of FC Barcelona believes the team is in good shape and more than ready to take on Real Madrid on Saturday
The Barça defender says he’s fit and ready: “I’m in great shape. The feelings are good. I’m available to the boss”.
Puyol: “Real Madrid always demand the most from you. They’re playing better and better. We’ll have to be at our best to beat them”.
Speaking at Thursday’s press conference, Puyol told reporters: “It’s been a tough seven months but now I’m back”. The team is in good shape and keen for action. The ‘clásico’ is one of those matches that every footballer wants to play”. As regards his fitness level, he explained: “I’m in great shape. The feelings are good. I’m available to the boss”. My approach to the game won’t change. I always give my all on the pitch”. He also confirmed that he had finished the Osasuna game in better shape than he had expected.
As for Saturday’s big game against Real Madrid, Puyol emphasised: “It won’t decide the league title. There’s a long way still to go. But it is a good opportunity to play well and gain confidence”. “Real Madrid always demands the most from you. They’re playing better and better. We’ll have to be at our best to beat them. We know they’re dangerous on the break. We know them very well”.
The central defender explained that the players want to keep on improving and that despite being a tough match, the fact that Barça are playing in the Camp Nou should help: “Real Madrid have played very well in the Camp Nou in recent years but having the support of the fans is always important”.
Puyol was clearly delighted to be back in training with the rest of the squad and heaped praise on the performance of the other central defenders in the squad during his absence. “We’ve got four top class central defenders and competition is good”. About Marc Bartra he insisted: “I’ve seen names in the press that are no better than him. He has to keep on training hard and never lose faith. I believe we have a central defender for many years to come”. Moving on to Mascherano, he revealed. “I believe he’s too demanding of himself. He’s playing really well. There are few central defenders in the world that can play at his level. If we made a video featuring his good performances, I’m sure it would be much longer that one with his mistakes”.