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Koeman talks Messi, De Jong and Pique ahead of Real Valladolid clash

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The latest from the Barcelona boss

Osasuna v FC Barcelona - La Liga Santander Photo by David S. Bustamante/Soccrates/Getty Images

Ronald Koeman faced the press on Easter Sunday to talk about Barcelona’s next La Liga game against Real Valladolid at the Camp Nou.

The Barcelona boss spoke about whether Lionel Messi and Frenkie de Jong will play, Gerard Pique’s fitness, the latest transfer rumors, and Barca B captain Alex Collado.

Here are the best bits:

Koeman on Real Valladolid

We are at a time when we have to go all out. We have to be prepared, you can’t think that it will be an easy game just because of their injuries. We have to go in with a lot of energy and rhythm, and be good with the ball. We have to get back to our level.

Koeman on risking Messi and De Jong

We know that these two players are one card away, but it is not the time to rest players due to cards or freshness. We have ten games left. There is always the risk, but the best thing is to put the team out that I think can win.

Koeman on Pique and Sergi Roberto

They’re training with the team. They’re decisions that we will make on Monday morning after the final session. We will not take any risks, not just for the Clasico, but for any game.

Koeman on Messi contract

It is a really important issue and we will do everything we can for Leo to spend many more years at this club. But, at the moment, it’s not about next season, it’s about the game against Real Valladolid. The president and his people can deal with the future.

As I said a couple of weeks ago, we took advantage of the international break to have a meeting with the president and the board to speak about this season and next season. It happens at all clubs in the world, but the players and I are focused on our upcoming games.

Koeman on if Barca can afford Haaland

I don’t know if it’s possible because we spoke about the future of this team and the final decision is always by the president of the board if something is possible or not. It’s not for me to give an answer to this question because I am not involved in the financial situation of the club. We spoke about how we can improve the team and the final decision is always with the president.

Koeman on Alex Collado

He’s an interesting player, like other Barça B players, but it’s a topic for next season. We have to help them do well in the promotion playoffs and that’s why Ilaix played with them.

Koeman on Laporta

Yes, they have transmitted a lot of confidence and are very happy, but that’s normal after the changes we’ve made. No one could have expected in November to be fighting fore the title and in the Copa del Rey final. So it’s normal but we also know in our world we have to keep working hard, game by game, and once again, as the president said in his inauguration, the confidence is there. Now I have to demonstrate as coach the confidence they have in me.