Luis Enrique insists Barcelona will be ready for the Vicente Calderon cauldron that awaits them when they take on Atletico Madrid on Wednesday.
Barca travel to the capital for the second leg of their Champions League quarter-final holding a slender 2-1 lead from last week’s first meeting. Luis Suarez struck twice to give the holders the win, after Rojiblancos striker Fernando Torres had scored and then got sent off before half-time.
Atletico’s home ground is famous for its boisterous atmosphere during big games, but Luis Enrique expects his off-colour side – who have picked up just one point from their last three La Liga outings – to handle the raucous reception.
“We have a small advantage, but the tie remains open,” the coach told his pre-match media conference on Tuesday.
“We compete for perfection and the team is prepared for the atmosphere that awaits us. If there is a team capable of coping with the Vicente Calderon atmosphere, it is Barca.
“We know that we must play a good game in order to qualify.”
Defender Javier Mascherano joined his manager for Tuesday’s media duties, and he is also upbeat about Barca’s chances of progressing past a side who now sit just three points behind them in La Liga.
“We enter the game with confidence due to the advantage from the first leg,” said the Argentinian.
“Each game has to be taken separately and we do not have to look back – everything depends on us.
“Tomorrow is the first of all the finals which remain between now and the end of the season. We are eagerly anticipating the match.”
Download our mobile app today.