Spain's Real Madrid core of no concern to Valverde

By Sports Desk September 14, 2018

Barcelona boss Ernesto Valverde thinks suggestions of a Real Madrid dominance of the Spain squad are inaccurate. 

Madrid stars Dani Carvajal, Sergio Ramos, Nacho Fernandez, Dani Ceballos, Isco and Marco Asensio all started Tuesday's 6-0 Nations League thrashing of Croatia in Elche, while only Sergio Busquets was involved from a Barca perspective.

With Sergi Roberto the only other Barca player in the 23-man squad, there have been suggestions Madrid are becoming the dominant force within the national team, despite the presence of ex-Blaugrana head coach Luis Enrique.

However, Valverde highlighted that of those six Madrid players, only Nacho and Carvajal came through the youth system.

He also pointed to the absence of three Spain regulars over recent years from Barca who were not involved this time: Andres Iniesta and Gerard Pique, who have retired from international football, and the overlooked Jordi Alba.

"I think you need to read things properly," he told a news conference. "It was said before how there were more Barca than Madrid players; now, there are more Madrid than Barca players.

"There are players who weren't there, like Andres, Gerard Pique, Jordi Alba. In recent years, Madrid have signed players who can be called up, like Asensio, Isco, Dani Ceballos.

"If you look at the players from the Madrid and Barca youth teams, they are similar. I have the impression they're similar. 

"In any case, we'll fight to change that and to have more of our players called up."

Related items

  • Rumour Has It: Barcelona players losing confidence in Valverde Rumour Has It: Barcelona players losing confidence in Valverde

    Ernesto Valverde is facing a big week at Barcelona.

    Valverde is under pressure early in the season after Barca slumped to a 2-0 loss at Granada to be left with just seven points from their opening five games of the LaLiga season.

    Now, the next week is shaping as crucial for Valverde.

     

    TOP STORY – BARCELONA PLAYERS LOSING CONFIDENCE IN VALVERDE

    Several Barcelona players have started to lose confidence in Valverde, according to ESPN.

    With seven points from five league games, Barcelona have made their worst start to a season since 1994-95.

    Monday's cover of Sport says Valverde needs an urgent reaction, with his side hosting Villarreal on Tuesday and visiting Getafe four days later.

     

    ROUND-UP

    Barcelona are keeping an eye on Napoli midfielder Fabian Ruiz. Barca's sporting director Eric Abidal was present as Fabian scored in Napoli's 4-1 win over Lecce on Saturday, according to Calciomercato.

    AC Milan want to strengthen at right-back and are considering Tottenham defender Serge Aurier, according to Sportmediaset, amid suggestions Andrea Conti is struggling to impress.

    Jose Mourinho has had chances to return to management and the former Real Madrid and Manchester United boss apparently turned down a surprise opportunity last year. Fichajes reports Boca Juniors tried to convince Mourinho to take over, but the Portuguese tactician said he was not yet ready to leave Europe.

    Everton have made a slow start to the Premier League season and are assessing ways to strengthen their attack. The Daily Express reports they are interested in signing Yussuf Poulsen from RB Leipzig. The Denmark international scored 15 Bundesliga goals last season.

  • Ten-man Molynes United stay perfect with win over Arnett Gardens Ten-man Molynes United stay perfect with win over Arnett Gardens

    Newly promoted Molynes United maintained a perfect start to the new Red Stripe Premier League (RSPL) after slipping by former champions Arnett Gardens, despite going down to ten men, at the Waterhouse Stadium on Sunday.

    Nicholas Nelson gave the home team the lead in the lead in the 18th minute but was dramatically sent from the pitch only two minutes after.  His ejection left Arnett with a one-man advantage and plenty of time to turn the game around.  The team seemed to be well on their way to doing just that when Vishineul Harris equalised two minutes in the second half.

    The hosts, however, had more surprises as Tyrique Wilson fired them back into the lead in the 65th minute.  To make matters worse for Arnett, they were themselves reduced to ten men when Kimani Arbourine was sent off in the 82nd minute.  The win marked a fourth in a row for Molynes who top the RSPL standings with 12 points.

    At Harbour View Stadium, defending champions Portmore United secured their first win of the season with a 2-1 win over struggling Harbour View. 

    At the Edward Seaga Stadium, Tivoli Gardens snapped a three-game losing streak to start the season when they defeated Cavalier 2-0.  The match seemed to be headed for an even share of the points but the dismissal of Tivoli’s Clifton Woodbine gave the home team added impetus. 

    Rodrico Wellington gave Tivoli the lead six minutes later before Donovan Dawkins secured the home team their first win of the season in the 88th minute.

    At the Royal Lakes Complex, Dean-Andre Thomas scored a brace to ensure Dunbeholden kept the momentum from a narrow win over Portmore United last week, with a 2-0 win over newcomers Vere United.  Thomas scored from the penalty spot in the 40th minute before adding a second in the 83rd.

    At Effortville, Humble Lion and Waterhouse played to a 0-0 draw.

  • Zidane rates Sevilla win the best of his second Real Madrid spell Zidane rates Sevilla win the best of his second Real Madrid spell

    Zinedine Zidane admitted the 1-0 win over Sevilla on Sunday left him more satisfied than any of the results he has achieved in his second spell at the Real Madrid helm.

    Madrid head coach Zidane had come in for increasing scrutiny following the 3-0 Champions League loss to Paris Saint-Germain on Wednesday, but Karim Benzema's second-half header against Sevilla meant they returned to winning ways in LaLiga.

    Sevilla had won the previous four LaLiga encounters between the two in Andalusia, but they were unable to muster a single shot on target, with Madrid boosted by captain Sergio Ramos' return to their defence.

    Asked by Movistar if it was the best game of his second stint having returned in March, Zidane replied: "Yes, it is the game that leaves me the most satisfied since I came back.

    "They have all helped each other on the field. We had complicated moments, but the solidarity that existed in those moments is obvious. This field is difficult."

    Madrid trio Eden Hazard, James Rodriguez and Gareth Bale all failed to impress in an attacking sense in the victory, though Zidane was quick to highlight the other side of their games.

    "We know we can create danger, but everyone's defensive work has been the key to winning," Zidane added.

    "The three in particular have done it defending a lot. In a difficult game like today, everything had to be done."

© 2018 SportsMaxTV All Rights Reserved.