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Cesc Fábregas: "The more Clásicos there are, the better"

"The feeling you get when you play in a Clásico is like nothing else, it doesn't matter if it's in the Copa, the Champions League or a village tournament."


Cesc Fábregas: "The more Clásicos there are, the better"

A possible Copa semi-final with Real Madrid: "A Real Madrid-Barça is always very close. It's a different game from the rest. It's a very special derby and you cannot compare it with any other game, the feeling you get when you play in that game is like nothing else, it doesn't matter if it's in the Copa, the Champions League or a village tournament, you go out onto the pitch feeling very different to any other game."

Everyone is thinking about a Clásico semi-final: "Everyone apart from us. Are we tired of playing Madrid so often? I don't think so. Any player in the world wants to play in important games. The more Clásicos there are, the better it is for football, the players, the fans, everyone. But first we want to play against Málaga, who beat Madrid last time, and who drew with us. Things change in football every day. We want to fight and play well in Málaga, and if we get through, then we can talk about a Clásico."

The second leg against Málaga: "We're treating it as a very difficult game. We can't lose our identity, we'll play well. When you play so many games against the same opponents, you get to know them well. You know just the little differences, and that's what can change the balance of the game. We played very well in Málaga (in the league) and we could have scored more goals in the first leg, but that's football, you have to learn how to deal with things like that. Málaga are having a stupendous season."

Valdés's decision to not renew his contract: "I think that everyone is free to make the decisions they want. He has done the right thing by giving the club time to look for a solution. We shouldn't think too much about Valdés, we should focus on the club and the team. I think we'd be more worried if he was training badly or if he wasn't playing well but Valdés trains to the maximum, you need to see him. He's like a youngster trying to get into the team. He's in great form and we respect his decision because he has given a lot to this team and to his team-mates. It's his decision, if he's said he's going, that means he will leave and the decision is irrevocable, but I'm not inside his head. All we can do is respect the decision, close the matter and fight for every trophy."

Being in control of games and then losing them: "In football every goal is avoidable. There's always some error, from a team-mate or the opposition. It's a game of errors and you have to try and commit as few as possible. We are relaxed. We would have been happy if someone had told us that we would only lose one game out of 20. But it's over. In the first half we played well and were very comfortable but when they scored they caused us problems. But I think we need to continue as we were."

A link between the two bad results in a week? "Of course both results were negative for us but we have the chance to make up for the result with Málaga (in the second leg), we'll have to play as well as we can, play our best football and do things well. I don't want anything else this year."

Reaction to the first league defeat: "The fans have always supported us in the good times and the bad times. In football every fan and every player knows that you can draw or lose. All 22 players want the same thing. It's impossible to win every game in a season. I think we're going in the right direction but we have our feet on the ground. Slip ups like this will happen."

Madrid fans have been getting their calculators out after the defeat to Real Sociedad.. "We were doing the same last year. Of course there are fewer points between us and them than before but we've always been confident when we go into games and we're going to try to win the league. It's possible that Atleti, due to being in all the other competitions, think they are in with a chance too. But we don't need to think about it, we just need to win games."

His own form: "I think of myself as a competitive player who is always trying to improve. I examine myself and always try to think of the negatives and the positives and how I can help the team more. You can always improve. I'm happy with how the season's going, I think I'm combining better with my team-mates. I think that I've been picking my pass better and I'm combining well with Iniesta. I'm happy but I think that, at 25, I can still improve. I should be at my peak between 26 and 30 years old."

Fitness: "I feel fitter than at any other point in my career. Last year I was running out of gas by the end, I need to feel strong at the end of the season. Let's hope we can reach our objectives this season and get to the two finals and finish well in the league."

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