Valverde keen to keep squad focus on Copa final

Joann Johnston
May 25, 2019 earlier reported that Liverpool are through to the final of this season's UEFA Champions League after beating Barcelona 4-0. "It was a big blow".

He added: "We have to apologise for the second half of the match at Liverpool (when they conceded three goals in the 4-3 aggregate loss) not because of the result, but because of how it looked and that we didn't compete. It was very tough, it has been very hard to pull ourselves back up because the days go by and you can't forget this defeat". "That's why I think we were all in our heads in the Champions League and that's why the disappointment was so great, repeating what happened in Rome".

"That game has spoilt a little the year we have had", he said.

"I have had problems with the national team and I still want to keep trying to win something there".

"You may like it or not, but as we play this year we can win another double". We knew that we couldn't repeat what had happened last season, and yet it happened again.

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When asked if he himself was considering leaving Barcelona, Messi responded: "No, no, no".

"I would like [Valverde] to continue", Messi said. Messi replied: "I never had any doubts, I am stil keen to be here regardless of the disappointment". "Nothing makes me think about not competing here".

Barca, who are looking to win the Copa del Rey for a fifth successive year, will be without Luis Suarez after the Uruguayan had surgery on his knee, while goalkeeper Marc-Andre Ter Stegen is also sidelined.

That now infamous phrase has been frequently repeated since Barca failed to reach the Champions League final in Madrid due to their defeat by Liverpool, which came after a 3-0 victory over Juergen Klopp's side in the first leg at the Nou Camp. Valencia are a very hard team, we know each other well, it's going to be very equal. "The capacity of Barca in attack is huge and will force us to be nearly flawless in defence over the 90 minutes".

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