Pique believes Barcelona was at its best under Guardiola
Barcelona defender Gerard Pique believes it will probably be impossible for his side to replicate the success acquired under the reign of Pep Guardiola. The Spanish center half claims Barcelona will have to make a Herculean effort to raise their standard of football to what was during Guardiola’s managerial time at the club.
Nonetheless, Pique is happy with the current form of Barcelona. The 26-year-old Spain international insists the club is heading towards a positive direction under the leadership of new manager Gerardo Martino, although there is much room for improvement.
Pique was one of the key players in Guardiola’s reign of glory. Success from Guardiola’s era is still being used as a yardstick to measure short comes of Guardiola’s successors. Pique told El Larguero in an interview after a 3-1 win over AC Milan in the Champions League that Barcelona’s ‘the year of the six trophies’ was an achievement almost impossible to reproduce.
“Of course our play can improve,” Pique said. “We are coming from being so, so great, that anything which is not of that level seems to be not very much. [We are missing] more pressure up front, more fluidity, more regular chances, to have one every three or four minutes, which we had a few years ago. But we are talking about something very, very difficult, making comparisons with 2009, when we won six trophies. We are talking about the best team in history. Nobody can achieve that.”
Barcelona is unbeaten in all 18 of their competitive games this season. Moreover, they have already won the Spanish Supercopa and are leading the La Liga table. The Champions League victory over AC Milan means the La Blaugrana have now qualified for the last-16 stage in the Champions League with two games to spare.
Pique claims he expects Barcelona to meet obstructions on the road to success, but they will be in contention for silverware at the end of the season.
“I know the demands at this club are to be at that level, and we are going to try,” Pique said. “The squad is more or less the same so that is what we aim for. It is true that we have a new coach, and bit by bit we are looking to give him what he wants out there on the pitch. At the moment we are winning most of our games, but when we lose we will take it and be relaxed. We will be fighting for the trophies, from there if we win them or not, there are many factors. One is to try and play well, and we will do that.”