10 Feb Barcelona return focus to LaLiga after reaching another Copa del Rey final
Ernesto Valverde has urged Barcelona to put their Copa del Rey exploits to the back of their minds when they return to LaLiga action against Getafe on Sunday.
Barca reached a record fifth consecutive final on Thursday night, beating Valencia 2-0 at the Mestalla to secure a 3-0 aggregate victory.
With the final not taking place until April 21, Barcelona can now turn their attention to other competitions, starting with the league.
Valverde’s side are still unbeaten in 22 league matches this season and sit nine points clear of second-placed Atletico Madrid.
And ahead of Getafe’s visit to the Nou Camp, head coach Valverde wants Barca to refocus.
“It is a game with challenges. Getafe defend well and they are having a great season,” Valverde said at a press conference streamed live on Barca’s official website.
“The game against Valencia is still fresh in our minds, so we have to be aware of the importance of Getafe. They are a team who are very difficult to beat.”
Ousmane Dembele, a big-money summer signing from Borussia Dortmund, has recovered from injury to return to Barcelona’s squad.
And Valverde is hoping Dembele, who has not played since January 14, can make an impact.
“We have high hopes for Dembele,” he added. “He will help us with his quality. He is feeling good and will be introduced little by little.”
Barcelona are without the suspended Samuel Umtiti and the injured Thomas Vermaelen while Denis Suarez and Andre Gomes have failed to make the squad.
Getafe head to Barcelona unbeaten in four matches, drawing their last three, and are 11th in the table.
Manager Jose Bordalas believes his side are capable of pulling off a shock.
“Be daring and look for the opponents’ goal,” he told the club’s official website.
“We know that they will demand a lot, but I always instil in my players that you can win.
“We have respect, it’s a rival that have maximum goals, it’s a great team.”