San Mames

Next Game

Ath Bilbao v Barcelona

Saturday, 08 August 2015, 22:00

Spanish Supercopa

Pique proud of Tito

Tito Vilanova's touchline return can inspire Barcelona to even greater heights, says defender Gerard Pique.

Last Updated: 11/04/13 at 08:03 Post Comment

Head coach Vilanova had a cancerous tumour removed in 2011 and has missed much of this season whilst undergoing further treatment.

But he was back on the bench for Barca's thumping 5-0 victory over Mallorca at the weekend - a victory that took the club 13 points clear of Real Madrid in La Liga - and will be at the helm as Barcelona attempt to reach a sixth successive Champions League semi-final on Wednesday.

"It is so difficult when the boss, when the coach is not there," Pique told Revista ahead of this week's Champions League second leg home clash against Paris Saint-Germain, which will begin with the teams locked at 2-2.

"It's true that we started really strong and then we lost some points in the league and we lost a game in the Champions League against Milan and people started to say that maybe we were not good enough.

"It was because we were in a really strange situation and now normality is returning again. We are starting to be with the boss again. In this last two months we need to improve our level so we get to the Champions League final and win the league."

Incredible

Earlier this year Vilanova spent two months in New York undergoing treatment for his condition, during which time Jordi Roura took over first-team affairs.

However Pique told Revista that the 44-year-old has been in contact with the Barcelona players throughout his illness right from the first moment he told the squad of his illness.

"We had some video conferences with him before the games, just to talk about a few things - like defence and how we have to attack.

"He was there all the time even though he was ill. To be fair, we are really proud of him because he did something incredible.

"He was ill but he kept working for us and now that he is a little bit better he is going to the games and the training, so he is helping us a lot."

Changing

Vilanova stepped up into the role of Barcelona head coach at the start of the season after his predecessor Pep Guardiola admitted that his four-year spell at the helm had left him "drained".

Former Spanish international Guardiola guarded Barca to a glut of trophies, including three La Liga titles and two Champions League crowns.

The club has high hopes of adding a domestic and European league double to that haul this season even though Pique admits that the side is playing a different brand of football under Vilanova.

"We play with the same philosophy and the same style, but if you want to keep winning you have to keep changing things because eventually all of the teams know you," he said.

"It's true that sometimes it works and sometimes it doesn't but we have to keep changing."

You can see the full length version of our Pique interview on skysports.com on Wednesday evening.

Related News

Most Commented

Readers' Comments

D

on't go to England at your age, you'll either be mugged or not appreciated. Or made to lump the ball long to a bloke who looks like a mascot.

megabrow (cufc)
Beckenbauer warns Schweinsteiger

F

rom the headline I presumed he meant boots, pants, jim-jams, toothbrush and paste, passport, tickets, premier inn long-term package, Scouse-English-Portuguese-German dictionary, 'How to be a 9 and 3/4' by B. Rodgers, few dozen tins of food and Evian because you can never be sure about the local food/water...

KevinBoatang
Firmino has 'everything' for PL - Willian

H

e looked like he was playing with a plastic pound shop ball in the wind against Juve, his passing was so bad.

paddy7s
Sergio Ramos: Exactly What United Need

Footer 365

Palace confirm Cabaye talks

Crystal Palace co-chairman Steve Parish has confirmed the club are in talks to sign Paris Saint-Germain midfielder Yohan Cabaye.

Tottenham 'agree' Alderweireld deal

Tottenham have agreed a deal for Atletico Madrid central defender Toby Alderweireld, according to reports in Italy.

Liverpool linked with Balde Diao swap

Liverpool are in talks with Lazio over a player-plus-cash deal for striker Keita Balde Diao, according to reports in Italy.

Mail Box

Has Everyone Forgotten About Khedira?

Sami Khedira is one of the signings of the summer and yet he's flown completely under the radar. Plus Dommy S's views of women's football get a right old shoeing...

Women's Success Won't Alter Viewing Habits

The Women's World Cup hasn't inspired everyone. Also in the Mailbox: a plastic's guide to Brazil, Nani regrets, tears over Henry, and The Beach Boys...

© 2015 Sky Ltd. All Rights Reserved A Sky Sports Digital Media company