Soccer: Soccer-Xavi wanting ahead to Benfica conflict as Barca search revenge


BARCELONA (Reuters) – Barcelona boss Xavi Hernandez mentioned on Monday he’s relishing the problem of dealing with Benfica within the Champions League as they give the impression of being to avenge their defeat by the Portuguese facet in Lisbon earlier within the marketing campaign.

A win on Tuesday will guarantee Barcelona attain the final 16 of Europe’s elite membership competitors with a match in hand, regardless of a troublesome begin to the marketing campaign following 3-0 defeats by each Bayern Munich and Benfica.

“I see a possibility, no stress. Soccer at all times offer you a rematch. We’re Barca and we’ll go for it. I like challenges like this,” Xavi, who guided Barca to a 1-0 LaLiga win over Espanyol in his first recreation accountable for them on Saturday, advised reporters.

“Speaking is simple, we have to present it on the pitch. In opposition to Espanyol we have been higher. Barca aren’t in a scenario to point out off however we’ve got causes to be optimistic.

“If we win, we’ll qualify. We should be courageous and take a look at.”

Former Barca midfielder Xavi, who loved a trophy-laden spell with the staff, hailed followers for exhibiting up in good numbers at Camp Nou on Saturday and issued one other rallying cry for assist towards Benfica.

Attendance figures at Camp Nou have been poor amid a troublesome begin to the marketing campaign by which Dutchman Ronald Koeman was sacked as supervisor earlier than Xavi’s appointment this month.

“What I noticed on Saturday in Camp Nou I’ve by no means seen in my life,” Xavi mentioned. “It was spectacular. On Tuesday we’d like our followers once more. They’re a part of us. The ambiance in Barca should give individuals goosebumps.”

Benfica boss Jorge Jesus mentioned his staff was wanting ahead to enjoying at Camp Nou.

“The ambiance of their stadium is nice for them nevertheless it’s additionally good for us… nice gamers prefer to play in a fantastic stadium filled with supporters,” Jesus mentioned.

(Reporting by Fernando Kallas; Modifying by Shrivathsa Sridhar)

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