Roura has faith in stuttering Barca
By Football News
Barcelona assistant coach Jordi Roura expects his team to produce an impressive performance against AC Milan in the Champions League.
Barca were surprisingly beaten 2-0 by Milan in the round-of-16 first leg at San Siro last month, leaving one of the pre-tournament favourites teetering on the brink of an early elimination.
After also struggling against arch-rivals Real Madrid in the league and Copa del Rey, the Liga leaders defeated Deportivo La Coruna 2-0 on Saturday to continue their march toward the domestic championship.
And Roura, standing in for Tito Vilanova while the head coach under goes treatment for cancer, backed Barca to be at their best on the European stage when Milan arrive at Camp Nou.
"Well, after the run of bad results I talked to the team and this week was pretty intense," he said.
"We worked hard in training and the players responded well and are very keen to show their fight. I am very happy with their work this week and I think it will show on Tuesday.
"Milan's performance in the first leg did not surprise me. I always said that Milan is a very tough place to travel to and they are very good in front of their home fans.
"We were beaten on the day by the better side. I don't know what ... their strategy will be for the second leg, though I guess that having had that good result they'll play to hold it.
"What we do have clear (is) we are going to attack them, we have no choice because that is the only way for us to get back into the match."
After the team struggled with an inconsistent surface in Italy, Barca centre-back Gerard Pique said he hopes the near-flawless turf at Camp Nou will afford the hosts the advantage they need to overturn the deficit and reach the quarter-finals.
"I think that every year since I am part of Barcelona, there have been times when we have not found ourselves in good form," he said.
"Perhaps we have lacked a bit of the spark in the last few games but there will be no excuses from the players tomorrow.
"The pitch will be set up exactly how we want it tomorrow. It will suit our style of play and the fans will fill the stadium and get behind the team.
"I am confident, we have to go out there and do everything we can and the pressure is on them (Milan). We have been criticised in the last few weeks but tomorrow the team is going to do well."