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Valverde talks Olympiacos, Umtiti, Jose Arnaiz and resting Barcelona players

The boss has faced the press once again

FC Barcelona Press Conference Photo by Alex Caparros/Getty Images

Barcelona face Olympiacos in the Champions League on Wednesday night and ahead of the game Ernesto Valverde has faced the press.

The Barca boss was asked about facing one of his former sides, whether his players were tired and a whole host of other questions.

Here are the best bits...

Valverde on Olympiacos

“For me, it's an emotional game. I am still close to a lot of people who are involved with Olympiacos. They’ve changed the team a lot but their style has not changed, they are accustomed to winning and that's what I like. They’ve won titles and I still know a lot of people there and they showed me a lot of love.

“I thought they were aggressive against Juventus. We expect them to make things difficult for us. They won a very important league game last weekend but I'll say it again, the Champions League is a competition in which Olympiacos have always played well because this is what they live for, to enjoy these moments and I think it’s going to be a difficult match.”

Valverde on resting players

“It’s an important match tomorrow, but we also have to face Malaga after that. I am going to put the best players I can for this game and it's true the other day the players said after the game that they were a little tired, after a couple of tough weeks but we've now had four days off, four days without a game.”

Valverde on Samuel Umtiti

“He’s a fundamental player for us. We are very happy with him, he's agressive, brings the ball out, is good in the air. He is still a young player and can give us more and that's what we expect from him.”

Valverde on Andre Gomes and Gerard Deulofeu

“We have several options I think. I've tried Andre [Gomes] he’s a strong player, very good, I think offensively he projects very well. He plays with good strategy and of course there are other players too, Deulofeu who, when he comes in, can be the difference maker, so there are different options and I have to manage them according to how the game is going.

Valverde on Jose Arnaiz

“He arrived in the B team this year, he's young, he's fast, he's a difference maker, he can score. I think he has a big season ahead of him, we've seen him, he's been outstanding so far, so who knows? It’s a possibility, but I’m trying to focus on the team I have right now and we'll see if someone else can be part of this team. You're always looking to see if there’s a player in the reserves who can make the jump.”

Valverde on Paulinho

“I’ve said he's a different player compared to what we have. He’s a midfielder but he thinks a lot about going towards the goal. The others think about controlling the ball in the midfield. He is also a player who, when he comes in fresh, brings different things and I think we can use that to our advantage.”

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