El Madrigal

Next Game

Villarreal v Barcelona

Wednesday, 04 March 2015, 19:00

Copa del Rey Semi-Final

Last Game

Granada 1 - 3 Barcelona

Saturday, 28 February 2015, 15:00

Spanish Primera BBVA

Balague: Barca training tough

Guillem Balague says Barcelona’s superstars will be forced to suffer gruelling double training sessions during their week-long camp in Burton Upon Trent.

Last Updated: 29/07/14 at 10:58 Post Comment

New head coach Luis Enrique has brought his squad to St George’s Park as part of his preparations for the new La Liga season with the likes Gerard Pique, Andres Iniesta, Xavi, Jordi Alba and Sergio Busquets arriving in England to use the FA’s facilities.

World Cup finalists Lionel Messi and Javier Mascherano, plus the injured Neymar, have been given an extended break and Spanish football expert Balague believes they may be thankful to miss out on the strict pre-season approach of their new boss.

“Luis Enrique is a fanatic of physical training,” he told Sky Sports News.

“Barcelona have come from two years where the training has been more relaxed and less intense, which showed in the way they were playing.

“But Enrique wants discipline, hard work, and for guys to recover pressure high and be fit.

“They are saying privately that it’s hard to finish the sessions. So far what he has been doing back in Barcelona is difficult training sessions.

“Here [at St George’s Park] you’re going to get one in the morning and one in the afternoon and so on until Saturday.”

Xavi has travelled with the squad, despite being linked with a summer transfer away from Barcelona, while speculation about the future of fellow midfielder Alex Song was rife after he flew home from the camp shortly after arriving in England.

And Balague explained that the club’s major summer signing, Luis Suarez, is not allowed to attend due to the terms of his four-month ban for biting Giorgio Chiellini at the World Cup.

“He cannot train,” he added.

“They are all waiting for the decision by CAS to see if the four months where he’s not supposed to be in any kind of football or sport’s installation can be changed. In any case, while that happens, he could not travel.

“Alex Song travelled with the side, but had to travel back home for personal reasons, according to Barcelona.

“Apart from that, everyone is here including – and this is a bit of a surprise - Xavi Hernandez, who had tried to get a way to sign for a club in Qatar or the United States.

“That hasn’t happened yet and there are still negotiations with clubs in Qatar, so it could still happen. In the meantime he has come back to join Luis Enrique’s team.”

Related News

Most Commented

Readers' Comments

W

ell that really inspires me with confidence. No point in training, deciding on a coherent formation, or playing players in their best positions, let's just hope we get lucky.

mumbo_jimbo
Van Gaal: Luck is key

I

believe this is because for sepp Christmas is a 7 day feast finishing on the 25th

hiya
Blatter calls for early final

F

alcao really needs to shine now. Apparently according to the stats, he scores more when played up front alone. I wonder if Van Gaal will actually apply a formation to get the best out of him though.

anthracyte
Van Persie lay-off expected

Footer 365

Jose Mourinho quick to shift focus to winning Premier League

Jose Mourinho was quick to turn his attention to Premier League matters after Chelsea's Capital One Cup final victory.

Mauricio Pochettino proud of Tottenham players despite Capital One Cup loss

Tottenham boss Mauricio Pochettino said he was proud of his players despite losing to Chelsea in the Capital One Cup final.

Jose Mourinho hails players for adapting to gameplan in Capital One Cup success

Jose Mourinho hailed his players for adapting to his gameplan after Chelsea’s Capital One Cup final success against Spurs.

Mail Box

Are Tottenham Right To Redevelop?

It's a really good Friday afternoon Mailbox, with thoughts on Spurs' ground development, the Europa league (leave it alone) and one man running for a very good cause...

Rodgers Is More Of A Paisley Than A Rafa

Most Liverpool fans in the Mailbox are claiming to be pleased to see the back of the Europa League. Plus merging the Europa and Champions League, and winter WC...

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