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Martino: I congratulate Cristiano, but there’s only one best player in the world and we have him

by Tom Conn | Posted on Thursday, January 16th, 2014

Barcelona manager, Tata Martino spoke about Thursday’s Copa del Rey tie against Getafe and despite having a sizable lead he stressed that his team much remain respectful of the opposition.

Tata Martino

In his pre-match press conference, Martino insisted that they will give there all, just as they had in the first leg and not behind the 4-0 advantage.

“We have never hidden behind the result of a previous match. We will play as if the tie was at 0-0.”

Martino went on to state that he hopes there isn’t a repeat of the 2007 cup tie when Getafe came back from a 5-2 victory at the Camp Nou to score 4-0 in the second leg and advance, but admitted, football is full of surprises and that’s not a bad thing.

“Even if that hadn’t happened, football is full of surprises and we have to do what we can to avoid them.

“Victory in of itself doesn’t guarantee immunity from these types of debates. Criticism can be logical and when we’re praised it means we’re doing things right.

Martino went on to discuss their 0-0 draw against joint La Liga leaders Atletico Madrid last weekend and what they took away from it.

“I really liked how competitive we were. Very intense, decisive matches are coming up against rivals that will make it hard to play our style of football.”

However, the real story of the day was the announcement that young centre-back, Marc Bartra had agreed to renew his contract and would remain at the club for years to come, something Martino feels is vital.

“It’s very good news. Bartra, Iniesta, Sergio Busquets… they are players that have a lot to give Barça. Bartra is a very young player who’s earning his spot in the first team. He’s a quality footballer, he’s eager to succeed in the Barça shirt and he’s learning alongside of Piqué, Puyol and Mascherano. It’s fundamental for Barça to have him. I think it’s good news for all Barça supporters.”

Martino concluded by congratulating Real Madrid forward, Cristiano Ronaldo on winning the Ballon d’Or, but insists that the Ballon d’Or and the best player in the world are not one and the same, as the best player in the world is Leo Messi.

“I’d like to congratulate Cristiano and all of the other players who won something [on Monday]. It’s a very important award and puts an extra shine on a season for a player. However, the best player in the world, there is only one, and we have him; the award given to the best player in the world, is someone else. All Messi wants is for things to go well with Barcelona and Argentina, I don’t think he’s worried about anything else.”

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