Despite their 1-1 draw with local rivals Espanyol, Barcelona coach Pep Guardiola has refused to concede the La Liga title to their arch rivals Real Madrid. The Catalans now find themselves 5 points behind their arch rivals Madrid who top the standings with 43 points.
Speaking to reporters after the match, Guardiola was quoted as saying that it was still too early to give up on defending their title. It might be a little too early to think about conceding any titles, however, the truth is, it won’t be easy stopping Madrid’s momentum.
“The championship is very long and there are still plenty of points up for grabs which can be won and lost,” Guardiola said.
Guardiola who feels that his side were denied a penalty claim in the dying minutes of the game believes that his were punished for not making use of the chances they had.
“In football, you have to overcome things like this. You can only change what is in your power,” he concluded.
Barca’s set back came on the eve of the highly awaited FIFA award ceremony that are scheduled to take place today. Guardiola and Messi are the favourites to win in their respective categories for coach of the year and player of the year respectively.
Should the pair win, then it would be another record for the club as it will see Messi become the youngest player in the history of the game to win the award three years consecutively.
Guardiola on the other hand is looking to add on his already impressive personal coaching honours by wining the coach of the year award. At only 40, Guardiola has seen his managerial profile sky rocket since taking over from Frank Rijkaard in 2008.
In the 3 years since, he has won among other awards the La Liga coach of the year year 2009, 2010 and 2011; World Soccer Magazine coach of the year 2009 and 2011 and the UEFA Team of The Year Best Coach 2009.
Photo Credit © MattyV53