Barcelona are set to take on Real Sociedad in the quarter-finals of the Copa del Rey on Wednesday night, with arguably the two most in-form teams in Spain going head-to-head.
Xavi Hernandez was of the same mind, as he prepares his team to face a La Real side looking for their tenth win a row.
“It will be a great game. Both teams arrive in a good moment of form. Real Sociedad are a great team, well-prepared by Imanol Alguacil.”
Sport carried his comments and if there is one doubt about this La Real side, it is their mounting injuries. The Txuri-Urdin are set to be missing seven players for the match, while Xavi can call on his full squad.
He went on to praise La Real and his opposite number Alguacil, who Xavi claimed was a reference point.
“Imanol’s strategy is excellent. He is a proven coach who has already won a title with Real Sociedad. For me he is an example of how to do things. I like many things about La Real, they are a great team. And a large part of it the merit belongs to Imanol.”
Alguacil has masterminded three successive successful seasons, finishing sixth, fifth and sixth, but they look better than ever currently. While La Real are generally a ball-playing side that likes to dominate games, they are not afraid to go more direct when it beckons. That perhaps can be seen in Xavi’s work too.