Speaking to Vamos ahead of the return to La Liga this week, Barcelona head coach Quique Setién admitted he feels Lionel Messi is ready to face Mallorca on June 13.
On nerves before the restart
There’s always a certain amount of pre-match jitters. Returning to full competition is what really matters right now and especially under this new set of special circumstances. There’s always a bit of uncertainty, but we can’t wait for it all to start up again. Although we would have liked to have had more time training with the full squad.
On Lionel Messi
There were other players who also missed training. As a precaution, like with quite a few of the others, he has a sprain and it’s nothing serious. He’s in perfect shape and won’t have any problems playing. He’s in the same position as everyone else. We will have to look at what the team needs, what the circumstances are and bearing in mind that we don’t have a bid squad. Obviously I’d rather have Messi out on the pitch as much as possible, but we’ll see how it turns out.
On Luis Suárez
He’s one of the doubts we have right now. However, he’s managed to withstand the rigours of full training, he’s in pretty good shape – much better than we’d hoped. The doubt we have is that there is always a bit of uncertainty when a player has undergone an operation. We’ll see how he gets on this week before deciding whether he can start or come on later as a sub.
On playing in empty stadiums
I once had to play a game behind closed doors and it doesn’t really affect you that much. Once you’re out on the pitch, you’re focused on the game. In some ways, you notice it’s different but we hope it won’t affect our game or what we have to do. It’s the same for every team. We’re all going into the unknown. It’ll be a little strange.
On Ivan Rakitic’s future
I want all of the players who are under contract here to comply with what we ask of them, not just Ivan Rakitic, but everyone. We are going to need all of the players to achieve our objectives.