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Iniesta happy to be playing final in Barcelona

Barcelona midfielder Andres Iniesta is unsurprisingly pleased that the Copa del Rey final will be played at the club's Nou Camp stadium.

The Catalans will face Athletic Bilbao in the final on 30 May in Barcelona, after the two clubs failed to agree on a neutral venue and Real Madrid refused to host it at the Santiago Bernabeu.

Andres Iniesta will get a home crowd. Credit: PA

"I like the choice," Iniesta told Spanish sports newspaper Marca. "It's a very good venue.

"The important thing is that we will be playing in the final.

"The Copa final is a very special day and we hope that it will be an extraordinary time for both Barca and Athletic fans."

Suarez scores 'most important goal' for Barcelona against Real Madrid

Suarez got the winner. Credit: Reuters

Luis Suarez hailed his second-half winner against Real Madrid as "the most important goal" of his Barcelona career.

With 55 minutes on the clock and the scoreline locked at 1-1 after Cristiano Ronaldo had cancelled out Jeremy Mathieu's opener, the Uruguayan trapped a long punt forward by Dani Alves and then arrowed the ball past Iker Casillas to restore Barca's lead at the Nou Camp.

This is the most important goal I've scored for Barca and it has an extra significance because of the rival we were playing against.

I just tried to take advantage of the space between defenders and be as fast as I could so I didn't give the centre-backs any time to recover. Luckily it went in.

The dressing room is very happy, we knew this was a really important game if we wanted to stay top of the league and increase our advantage.

– Suarez speaking to Barcelona's official television Channel.

Barcelona stars laud 'incredible' Man City stopper Hart

Lionel Messi thought Joe Hart's performance on Wednesday night was "phenomenal", Andres Iniesta opted for "outstanding" while Barcelona manager Luis Enrique described Man City's goalkeeper as "incredible".

Hart denies Messi during a phenomenal performance in Barcelona. Credit: PA

The Spanish side won 1-0 in the Nou Camp to complete a 3-1 aggregate win over City, but the scoreline would have been much greater but for a string of saves from Hart.

"He was phenomenal, he stopped everything," Messi said on the Barca website. "We have to congratulate him on a great game because he's a fantastic goalkeeper."

Andres Iniesta added: "Hart was key to keeping them in it and was great in one-on-one situations. Outstanding."

Coach Luis Enrique was happy to see his side progress to the quarter-finals of the Champions League, but felt the scoreline did not reflect their dominance - with Hart the main reason.

"The score could have been a rout," he said. "Hart was incredible but we weren't really on towards the end.

Luis Enrique: We need to be at our best to beat Man City

Barcelona head coach Luis Enrique says his side can't be complacent when they face Manchester City on Wednesday.

The Catalans are 2-1 up from the first leg in England, but Enrique knows the Premier League champions can't be treated lightly.

Luis Enrique will have a focused side. Credit: PA

"We will have to go out there and play in a very comprehensive manner. We need to have lots of ball possession so they suffer, so they have to follow the ball.

"We need to find those moments to be dangerous, we need to find our superior skills whenever possible. It is about minimising their potential.

"If we do not achieve these objectives, Manchester City can achieve their own objectives. We have to control what is going on at every different moment."


Southampton boss Koeman would 'love' Barcelona job

Ronald Koeman is a Barcelona legend. Credit: PA

Southampton manager Ronald Koeman says he would love to one day take charge at former club Barcelona.

The Dutchman was linked with the job earlier in the season after Luis Enrique had a tough start to his tenure at the Nou Camp.

I think so, yes, because everyone knows what I have had with Barcelona and what Barcelona has with Ronald Koeman.

Therefore, if one day in the future I can be manager there, I would love it. That is football. Today can be black and tomorrow can be white.

You must prepare for everything and try to work well and win matches. Barcelona have a great team with great footballers, above all Messi. He is in his best form and nobody can stop this team.

– Ronald Koeman speaking to Spanish radio show El Partido de las 12

Barcelona refuse to rule out Messi move to Man City

Messi is not certain to stay at Barcelona. Credit: PA

Barcelona will do everything they can to keep Leo Messi at the Nou Camp but accept they may not be able to match a potential offer from a bigger-spending club.

The 27-year-old, who is Barca's all-time top scorer, is tied to the Catalan giants until June 2019 and has a £205 million release clause in his contract.

When asked about Messi's future, Barca international sporting director Ariedo Braida told Catalan TV channel Esport 3: "I believe it's very difficult that Messi will leave Barca but at times in football strange things happen.

"Now with these clubs that have so much money like (Manchester) City, certain amounts don't seem to have a value.

"In football things happen that appear impossible but I hope he will remain."

Busquets a doubt for vital Man City clash

Barcelona midfielder Sergio Busquets is doubtful for his team's Champions League last-16 return leg against Manchester City on March 18.

The Spain international was carried off on a stretcher in Wednesday's Copa del Rey match at Villarreal after hurting his right ankle.

Sergio Busquets could miss out. Credit: PA

A Barcelona statement read: "Tests done on Thursday morning confimed that Busquets has a right ankle syndesmosis injury.

"The player is ruled out for Sunday's league match with Rayo Vallecano at the Camp Nou.

"His availability beyond that will be carefully monitored."

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