Barcelona boss Xavi previews Las Palmas clash

FC Barcelona start 2024 with what should be a very tough away fixture indeed.

The Estadio de Gran Canaria is the venue, and speaking the day before the game, coach Xavi Hernández said “Las Palmas is a very difficult road trip. Girona aside, they are the surprise package of the season. They play good football and have a great coach.

“García Pimienta is doing a really good job. I am very fond of him, we played together for the Barça reserves. His team plays nice attacking football and plays the ball around like we do. I expect the game to be a fight for possession.

“The Christmas holidays were a good time to disconnect. But now it goes without saying that it’s time to get down to action on the pitch and to show how well we can play, as we were doing before.”

Vitor Roque will only be able to play if he can get registered in time, but Xavi is confident that it would all get sorted out. “He will be in the squad and is ready to help the team” he said. “But we’ll take things slowly with him. He’s only 18 years old and we can’t shoulder to much responsibility on him. But he’s been training hard and is very excited about this.”

As for other possible signings, the coach made it clear that “I have not spoken to Aleix Garcia or any other footballers. I don’t know if we can sign any more players. There’s no news on that front.”

He also announced that Iñigo Martínez will not be in the squad against Las Palmas but should be OK for the cup tie, while “things are looking good for Pedri and I hope to see him back on the pitch very soon.”