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Koeman talks Riqui Puig, Madrid derby and Barcelona vs Levante

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The latest from the Barcelona boss

FC Barcelona v Juventus: Group G - UEFA Champions League Photo by David Ramos/Getty Images

Barcelona coach Ronald Koeman faced the press after a tough week following defeats to Cadiz in La Liga and Juventus in the Champions League.

The Dutchman is under a bit of pressure ahead of Sunday’s La Liga visit from Levante and spoke about the need to win, Riqui Puig’s chances of starting and who we wants to win the Madrid derby.

Here are the best bits:

Koeman on Levante

We play at home against a team that of course will want to take the three points and we will have to pay attention to try to find spaces and create chances. It’s a really important week with three games at home and our situation in the league means we need to win all three games.

Koeman on Riqui Puig

He played well against Juventus, as in his other games. It’s about putting the best starting 11. We’ll see what happens tomorrow and if he plays from the start.

Koeman on the Madrid derby

We can give our opinion on other games but our responsibility is to win our games that’s the most important thing. Atletico are top of the league so probably it’s better they lose to reduce the gap but we’re not obsessed wtih other games. We should be focused on ours.

Koeman on how to improve

It is necessary to improve in defense. It’s not that I am obsessed, because analyzing the goals, only three are the product of the game, the rest are penalties or corners and individual errors. In the last two games we have created chances, but we’ve conceded.

Koeman on Koeman

I am happy but not with the results in the league. We are working hard trying to improve and of course we will see what happens in January with the new president. We are working well, we are changing with more younger players and we have to support these players.

Koeman on reports players don’t like system

The other day there was some news about the system, that’s fake news. I talk with the players every day about lots of things and they never told me anything about my system or my press conferences.

Koeman on feeling supported

Yes I feel I have the support of my squad. We have a good relationship because if not it’s impossible to work. I feel comfortable, but I am worried about our league situation. We are trying to improve and we still have time to change this situation.

Koeman sends message to Barcelona fans

Of course, it’s difficult for them because if you are used to always winning titles then it’s difficult to understand why you lose to Cadiz or Getafe. It’s difficult to explain, but it’s also a transition that started at the end of the last season. The situation at the club it’s difficult with Covvid, the financial situation, a new president in January, a lot of uncertainty. It’s difficult but we have to be patient so that in February we can see a winning team again.