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Tito: "Valdano likes Barça's style of play because he identifies with it"

Vilanova talked about Real Madrid's former sporting director, Iniesta and his lack of playing time, the 'Fifa Virus' and numerous other issues concerning the Barça squad.

Tito: "Valdano likes Barça's style of play because he identifies with it"

In a press conference held ahead of Barcelona's game against Zaragoza, Tito Vilanova said that Real Madrid's former sporting director identifies with Barcelona's style of play.

Valdano and his praise of Guardiola: "I love what he said and I like his understanding of football. Even though he's from Real Madrid, I'm sure he likes Barcelona's style of play because he can identify with it."

Iniesta's limited playing time: "He's played a fair few games, but we've also got a lot of good midfielders: Xavi, Cesc and now Thiago. For me it's not normal either if he doesn't play that much. A new trainer nearly always goes with eight or nine sure-fire starters, but the reason is that when the business end of the season comes around, with most important games, we want the players to be in good shape."

The FIFA Virus: "The big difference with this type of internationals is that only the South American players suffer jet lag, the ones from Spain normally play in Europe; but Spain travelled to Panama. There is nothing we can do, the national team coaches take the best players and it's difficult to select a team. Of course, it would be much better if they weren't jet lagged. Montoya, for instance, really isn't used to it."

Puyol: "There's still one training session to go, but he should get the all clear. If he does then he will be selected and could get on the pitch. He's only been training with the rest of the group for a few days and lacks a bit of match fitness, but given that it was an elbow injury it has hardly stopped him. That's a good thing."

The baby boom: "The players are delighted, and happier. This can only be a good thing. Congratulations to Valdés and Ricard Pruna."

The visit to Moscow: "We'll have a look at everything when we choose the squad. We're fully aware that the game against Zaragoza will be tricky, you can never sit back in La Liga. In other leagues you can lose six or seven games, but in the Spanish league it's not the case. Of course the most important game is the next one, in this case against Zaragaoza."

Alves blaming the departure of Guardiola on the squad: "Pep explained why he left and it was for good reasons and certainly plausible. He was the one that had to explain things. Of course, afterwards it's open to interpretation.

Contract renewals in the pipeline: "It's important for Puyol and Xavi to continue as well as other players that have broken records at the club. I think everything will be settled."

The motivation of the opposition: "That's normal among the other teams that play against Madrid and Barça, they're games watched by many fans so you have to be at your best. Anything can happen over ninety minutes, just look at the game against Mallorca - we were 0-3 up, but in three minutes the whole complexion of the game changed."

Leaving players out: "It's never easy, but I experienced it with Pep. It's tough when they're good players who are training well... it's the same when you have to pick the first eleven; it's never easy."

Estadísticas AS.com