Messi fires trophy warning
Thursday 26 March 2009
Lionel Messi has warned his Barcelona team-mates against losing focus in the finale to a season which promises much silverware.
The Catalan giants are on course to win a domestic double of the La Liga title and the Copa del Rey, while they have reached the last eight of the Champions League.
But despite taking the plaudits in recent weeks on the back of some impressive displays, Messi has warned that the season could still end in disappointment if the players take their eyes off the ball.
"We're enjoying ourselves playing football but we're also doing it with seriousness," he said.
"We're doing well and that translates into good football, but at the same time we're not losing our reference points.
"The plaudits are good, if we play well it's nice that people praise our football. But what's most important is that we remain conscious that we are only in the middle of the road.
"We're enjoying ourselves, but we'll enjoy it more if we win trophies so much more."
David Albelda has confirmed he will leave Valencia at the end of the season should the cash-strapped club look to offload him.
The former Spain international has successfully rehabilitated his career at the Mestalla after being banished to the reserves last season under former coach Ronald Koeman.
The 32-year-old has made 28 appearances in all competitions this season but has conceded this may be his last year with Los Che - and indeed football althogether.
"I would really like to stay and play at the top with Valencia but I am open to anything," said Albelda.
"It depends on the needs of the club. If one day Valencia decide they do not want me then I could well try my hands abroad, for example.
"In my opinion what most important is to be well and to give everything we can. Then we will decide whether later on we retire or move."
Meanwhile, Sevilla goalkeeper Andres Palop has urged the club's board to keep faith with under-pressure coach Manolo Jimenez.
Jimenez came under fire earlier in the season with the Andalucian club off the pace in the battle to secure Champions League qualification.
Sevilla are currently third in the table following an improvement since the turn of the year and Palop believes Jimenez remains the right man for the Ramon Sanchez Pizjuan hot-seat.
"(The players) want a coach who is here for a long time and that we all know well because that would be beneficial," he said.
Latest in Sport
Preston fan who appeared to snatch Jermaine Beckford's shirt from eight-year-old boy identified and says: 'the truth will come out'
England 'favourites' to host 2018 World Cup following Fifa arrests
Premier League 2015/16 kits: Confirmed and rumoured strips from Arsenal, Manchester United, Liverpool, Chelsea and others
Manchester United season player ratings: Grading Louis van Gaal's entire squad
Psychic penguins have made their pick for Arsenal vs Aston Villa in the FA Cup final...
- 2 'Don't blame all men for rape' campaign backfires spectacularly
- 3 Isis burns woman alive for refusing to engage in 'extreme' sex act, UN says
- 5 Charlie Charlie Challenge explained: not a Mexican demon being summoned — it's gravity
EU referendum: David Cameron's rules are a 'democratic disgrace', says French-born Scottish politician set to be denied a vote
The day that Britain resigned as a global power
SNP fury as HS2 finds 'no business case' for taking fast train service to Scotland
A nation of inequality: How the UK is failing to feed its most vulnerable people
Australian man punched in the face for defending Muslim women from abuse on train
EU referendum: David Cameron to deny EU migrants and under-18s the chance to vote