Eric Abidal, who held the position of technical secretary of Barcelona until last summer, has revealed several anecdotes to the English newspaper “The Telegraph”
The paths of FC Barcelona and Eric Abidal separated in the middle of last year, when both parties reached an agreement to finalize the contract that the French had as the club’s technical secretary. Recently, the Frenchman gave an interview to the English newspaper “The Telegraph”, in which he revealed some interesting anecdotes about his time in the Barça offices, drawing attention to the one he told about the signing of Griezmann and the impossibility of bringing Neymar back during the summer of 2019.
Regarding this same issue, the former player and former FC Barcelona director told the British media the following: “Ten days before the end of the transfer period, I went to Paris to speak with Leonardo (PSG sports director). If we had not signed Griezmann before, I think 100% we could have re-signed Neymar. We needed an attacker and when Neymar was in Barcelona he was incredible. It’s not about which player is better, it was what I thought was the position we needed in that moment. The team needed a real winger. The president decided to sign Griezmann. ” Additionally, Abidal recalled that the legal dispute that Neymar carried out against Barcelona was another impediment for the Brazilian star to land again in the culé team.
The former Olympique de Lyon player also revealed some things about what happened to Lionel Messi, an issue that was the subject of controversy for some time. On this, Abidal said: “In my opinion, the team needed to train harder. In my time with Guardiola It was, ‘Do you want the best? Ok, you have to train like the best. You will win everything, only if you do the work during the week. I only said this, never that the players wanted to get rid of the coach. Messi spoke personally with me. We had a Strong conversation, but I can accept it. No problem because you have to be transparent. I was very comfortable because I was the only player who spoke to me like that, the only one. I respect that. I also understand that Messi is the captain and wanted to defend the squad, but I never said that Messi would have told me to fire the coach. Never. “
Along the same lines, the former player also clarified that “he has nothing to fix with Messi” and gave the murky situation that both starred in for ended. “We have exchanged many messages and he knows what I think. He did not want to turn a small situation into a global situation and put the whole club in trouble,” Abidal told the English newspaper.
During the management of Eric Abidal in Barcelona, the team was led by Ernesto Valverde, this being the subject of some of the statements of the former Barça left-back to The Telegraph. “In December 2018, after a complete analysis of the coach, the squad and the team, I recommended that we change Ernesto Valverde, I told the president ‘I think this is the decision to make now.’ And he said ‘no It’s not easy. “He made the decision to renew the coach’s contract two months later, the opposite of what I had suggested. Of course, I accepted the decision and continued to give the coach my full support, but it was a bit strange for me. “.
Additionally, Abidal commented that Mauricio Pochettino, current coach of Paris Saint-Germain, was the first option that he proposed, if Valverde left at that time. “If I spoke to him? Yes and not just me. I told the board ‘I have to bring the best coach we can in the market. I’m not here for politics because he was at Espanyol before.’ I wanted the best and he He is one of the best in our game. Pochettino reached the final of the Champions League with Tottenham, that must be respected, he has a good philosophy of play, of training, the players love him and I think that now he would be a better coach for this situation, but with a real project “, commented the former technical secretary.