Xavi: Barca-Madrid matches shouldn’t affect Spain
The ongoing feuds between Barcelona and Real Madrid’s Spanish
national team players during the current run of ”clasicos”
shouldn’t affect the World Cup champions, according to Barcelona
playmaker Xavi Hernandez.
Madrid and Barcelona reported each other to UEFA’s disciplinary
committee for unsporting behavior following Wednesday’s
ill-tempered 2-0 Champions League semifinal first leg victory for
While UEFA threw out the challenges on Monday, a number of Spain
teammates have become mixed up in sour on-field antics.
”I don’t want to think about that. Logically, we’re not talking
much either since both teams are looking out for themselves and
your competing to help your team win,” Xavi said Monday from the
Camp Nou, where Tuesday’s return leg match will be played. ”When
everyone goes back to the national team they go with the best
possible attitude because we’re all professionals.”
Spain coach Vicente del Bosque voiced concern over how the four
derby matches over an 18-day span will affect national team
relations, with 13 players from the World Cup winning squad taking
part in the games.
Several Spain players have been involved in on-field bust-ups,
most notably Barcelona striker David Villa and Madrid pair Sergio
Ramos and Alvaro Arbeloa during Madrid’s 1-0 Copa del Rey final
In Wednesday’s first leg, Ramos and Barcelona defender Gerard
Pique exchanged words while Barcelona forward Pedro Rodriguez
feigned injury following a run-in with Arbeloa.
Spanish media outlets reported that several players from both
teams stopped following one another on Twitter after last week’s
Xavi said Barcelona always showed ”exemplary conduct” and
placed the blame on Madrid’s Jose Mourinho, saying his coaching
style is about generating controversy.
”It’s sad,” Xavi. ”It would be nice to talk about football
and not all these pitiful details. We try our best not to let all
of this tension affect us. It’s almost impossible, but we