Real Madrid 0-2 Barcelona

Guardiola avoids war of words

April 27, 2011
By ESPNsoccernet staff

Barcelona manager Pep Guardiola refused to be drawn into a war of words with opposite number Jose Mourinho after his side put one foot in the Champions League final with a 2-0 win over Real Madrid.

Pep Guardiola and Jose Mourinho shake hands before kick-off.
GettyImages / LluisGenePep Guardiola and Jose Mourinho shake hands before kick-off.

Guardiola was asked if he had a reaction to Mourinho's post-match rant about the referees and Barcelona, but simply said: ''I have nothing to say''.

The manager instead preferred to talk up the value of his side, as they overcame a hostile crowd to beat the ten-men of Real on home turf.

"We came here with 12 players coming from our youth academy, we're proud of that fact," Guardiola said. "We corrected some things we did bad in the Cup [Copa del rey] final."

''We played a very good game, team was very aggressive, we won a lot of duels, [Seydou] Keita helped us a lot. We're now 90 minutes away from Champions League final and we're trying to get there.''

Barcelona defender Gerard Pique claimed that his side were better and were spurred on by the fact that Madrid did now want to attack.

''We fought well and had a good result. Now it is up to the second game,'' he said. "It's always the same, they [Real Madrid] didn't want to play at football, at their own stadium. They play at the limit of violence. If you play with fire, you can end up burning.''

Xavi maintained that Barcelona deserved to win and that Pepe deserved his red card for his tackle on Dani Alves.

"I just want to talk about football. There will always be decision from referees that will be talked about. Sometimes they go against you and sometimes they go in your favour. It was clear to see for everybody that Pepe's dismissal was a correct decision," Xavi told Marca.

"We got the result that we deserved. We were again superior. We're a team that wants to play attacking football and have fun on the pitch. They [Real Madrid] are just hoping that we'll make mistakes. That worked in the Copa del Rey final, but not this time.

"I don't want to talk about [Jose] Mourinho. I only want to discuss Barcelona. We put in a good performance and it's a fair result. This is a victory for football."