Valverde expects fans to play big role against Liverpool despite Klopp's 'temple' jibe

Credit: Reuters - Sports
Published on April 30, 2019 - Duration: 01:30s

Valverde expects fans to play big role against Liverpool despite Klopp's 'temple' jibe

Barcelona coach Ernesto Valverde trusts Nou Camp fans to give his side the support they need in their Champions League semi-final first leg against Liverpool.

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Valverde expects fans to play big role against Liverpool despite Klopp's 'temple' jibe

SHOWS: BARCELONA, SPAIN (APRIL 30, 2019) (REUTERS - ACCESS ALL) 1.

(SOUNDBITE) (Spanish) FC BARCELONA COACH, ERNESTO VALVERDE, SAYING: "The fans at the Nou Camp have already played a decisive role in recent weeks.

We've had several games with more than 90,000 fans and we have felt the difference they've made.

And tomorrow we expect the same.

We expect our fans will be pushing us tomorrow, just like we suppose when we're there (at Liverpool) their fans will do the same for them.

I think what Juergen Klopp said was more just something us coaches do to try tamp down the drama surrounding games." 2.

COACH, ERNESTO VALVERDE, AT TRAINING SESSION 3.

FORWARDS, LIONEL MESSI AND LUIS SUAREZ, ARRIVING AT TRAINING SESSION 4.

PLAYERS ARRIVING AT TRAINING SESSION 5.

MESSI AND SUAREZ ARRIVING AT TRAINING SESSION 6.

VARIOUS OF PLAYERS AT TRAINING SESSION STORY: Barcelona coach Ernesto Valverde trusts the Nou Camp faithful to give his side the support they need in their Champions League semi-final first leg against Liverpool, playing down Juergen Klopp's claim that the stadium will not intimidate his side.

The Nou Camp is the biggest stadium in Europe with a capacity for 99,000 people yet it does not have the same reputation for noise or unconditional support as Liverpool's home Anfield.

Liverpool coach Klopp said in a pre-game interview with broadcaster DAZN that his players should not be overwhelmed by playing at the Nou Camp, saying "it is just a stadium, it's not a temple".

But Valverde backed his side's supporters to turn up the volume in the game to help his side towards a first Champions League final in four years.

Barca midfielder Ivan Rakitic said he respected Klopp's opinion but added, "Playing at Nou Camp is different.

It's special.

You don't have to call it a temple, it doesn't matter, but the stadium has a different atmosphere and you have to respect that.

I'd love to be able to play at Nou Camp every week here at home with our fans." Rakitic said his side were excited about playing their first Champions League semi-final since winning the competition in 2015, adding that the players had an extra spring in their step after lifting the La Liga title on Saturday (April 27).

While Barca may be on cloud nine after sealing their eighth title in 11 years, Valverde warned his side of the dangers of this relentless Liverpool side, who have earned a staggering 91 points in the Premier League and have only lost once.

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