First, of the institutional problems in which Barça is involved

Of everything. First, of the institutional problems in which Barça is involved. When the club seemed close to returning to normality with the elections, the postponement of these extends the ‘provisional’ status in Can Barça and, consequently, makes planning for the next season difficult. But Messi’s red should also be understood as a strictly sporting exhaustion. Without a plan, without ideas, without resources and also without Pedri, Messi cannot do everything. With 2-3 on the scoreboard, the only letter from Koeman’s men was to deliver the ball to Leo so that his magic could do the rest, a script that has saved Barça on countless occasions but was unaffordable last night.

The red one to Messi must also be understood as an exhaustion of Barça’s disappointments on certain dates: Roma, Anfield, 2-8, the Liga Clásico, Wanda, the 0-3 against Juventus and, yesterday, La Cartuja. Emotionally, Barça is losing a winning mentality in the big events and for a born winner like Leo that generates enormous frustration.

Finally, the expulsion of the ’10’ is also explained from the frustration generated by the sometimes inexplicable criteria of the referees. Go in advance that Leo’s action has no justification whatsoever, but it is difficult to understand that, given what they saw, Barça and Athletic saw the same cards. Leo has been ‘beaten’ from the first day to the identity card. On many occasions, with an open bar to stop him based on fouls. In La Cartuja, Athletic repeated blatant fouls several times without any intention of fighting for the ball that Gil Manzano did not penalize with a foul. In the umpteenth action of this type, in the attempt of Villalibre to obstruct for free the career of a Messi who had already released the ball, the Rosario lost his patience.

"Messi is still the best in the world"

The possible sanction to Messi for his blow to Villalibre

This Sunday was the fourth expulsion of his career as a player. The other three occurred with Argentina (2) and with Barça B in a Second ‘B’ match against Peña Sport in 2006. With the ‘albi’, Leo saw the red in his debut against Hungary in 2005 and against Chile in 2019. If his action is considered aggression, Messi will serve between 4 and 12 sanction matches. However, it is most likely that Leo will be ‘accused’ of acting "violently during gambling, causing risk but not harmful consequences", something that is punishable by a penalty of between one and three games. Leo will begin his sanction this Thursday against Cornellà in a Copa del Rey match.

Mario Hermoso reviewed in an interview with EFE the summer lived between Atlético de Madrid and Espanyol to close his signing, as well as spoke of the premiere in Champions this Wednesday against Juventus by Cristiano Ronaldo, a team that eliminated them last season and from which he can go out a party with past memories. 


On 09/19/2019 at 09:29 CEST



Cristiano Ronaldo Mario Hermoso

How did the negotiation for your signing for Atlético live the summer? Was there a moment of despair when the negotiation between the clubs took so long?

These are difficult moments. These are things that already depend on the clubs, which have to reach an agreement between them, which is the main thing, because in the end the player can do little and those moments are always distressing.

You had more offers, for example from Paris Saint Germain. Were you close to playing there?

One more team. An offer like another.

On July 18, 2019, about ten minutes before 2:00 p.m., while the press awaited the presentation of Kieran Trippier in the Wanda Metropolitano auditorium, both clubs finally announced the agreement for his transfer. Immediately afterwards, it was introduced. Hours later, he joined the training sessions, directly to the starting eleven that Argentine Diego Simeone was then rehearsing.

How was Espanyol’s jump to Atlético de Madrid?

Well. The truth is that a big jump. A much larger team that competes for important competitions, for competitions that are very attractive, such as the Champions League and with the greats of the League. It’s a very good jump.

What does Atlético de Espanyol or Valladolid demand differently, in which you have played?

Winning every day, which is the important and the difficult thing in this sport.

He arrived as a center-back, but also as an alternative on the left side, Mario Hermoso has played three of the four games this season, two of them as a starter, although the two who broke into the eleven did so as the replacement of two casualties: Renan Lodi, suspended in Leganés, and Savic, injured against Eibar.

What does Simeone ask of him in the center of defense?

A little what he asks of everyone; a lot of intensity, being a good defender, a bit of being accompanied by the team, which after all is a team that has been working for many years, with a very particular philosophy, and adapting as quickly as possible.

In Leganés he took risks when the ball was released a couple of times and there was some gesture from Simeone’s bench. Do you ask him to risk less or to adapt his qualities a little to the idea that the technician has?

Logically, each coach sets his own guidelines and there are coaches who like the ball and others who don’t like to risk so much. So, that goes a bit depending on each team, the squad and what the coach demands.

In that sense, did last year with Rubí change a lot to this one with Simeone?

I think that logically it has nothing to do with it. They are totally opposite styles. Well, after all, you have to adapt to another style and that’s what we’re here for.

Mario Hermoso now faces the start of another adventure: the Champions League, with the first match of group D against Juventus at the Wanda Metropolitano stadium.

What does the ‘Champions’ transmit to you?

A very attractive competition, very beautiful, and I think it is always interesting to see how the big European clubs face each other in the same game, in the same group and then in the knockout rounds. The truth is that it is always exciting.

And the first game against Juventus …

It is always a clear favorite to be among those teams that compete to win the Champions League. It is a great club, which has been bringing out great players and competing at the highest level for a long time. It is a team that must always be respected.

What game do you foresee?

As I imagine what the competition demands; a very intense game, with great players on the field, which opens this competition and a game that is more than three points within that group. There are many emotions, turning the weekend around a bit (with the 2-0 defeat against Real Sociedad at the Reale Arena) … I think it encompasses much more than just a simple Champions League game.

You are new to the team this summer. Do you feel in the locker room a spirit of revenge for last season’s 3-0 defeat in the round of 16 against the same rival?

Every season is different. Yes it is true that we prepare to win each game and logically we want to win the game, but rematches in football, unless you play again the next day, I think they don’t exist. They are different parties. They are games where the teams are renewed, they come in different dynamics, players who play in that game different … They are different moments. It is trying to do what you believe and trying to win the game.

In that duel, played on March 12 of this year at Juventus Stadium, Cristiano Ronaldo scored the three goals for the Italian bloc that eliminated Atlético de Madrid. He has beaten the goal of the rojiblanco team 25 times throughout his career.

Cristiano Ronaldo will be opposite. How do you see him?

Mark a bit during these years of his career what it is. He has been a great player, a great athlete, he has been vindicating himself every year, surpassing himself, and there he is competing at the highest level, he continues to leave great flashes of what he has achieved throughout his career. It’s always nice to play against players like that.

What is the best way to defend him?

Always planning an uncomfortable game, that he is never comfortable, that he feels that when he has the ball it will be very difficult for him to have spaces and that he can think, which is where, after all, the players make a difference. When they think, they are different.

The Champions League is one of Atlético de Madrid’s challenges this season, along with the League and the Copa del Rey; the three open fronts of the rojiblanco team in this exercise.

What objectives should the team set in this campaign?

The same as all the years they have been here; maintain that block that they have been managing for so long, training every day to compete at the highest level every weekend and a little watching the game by game, which in the end is what marks a season and what marks the day to day. And be ambitious and want to win every game you have ahead.

How do you take on the status of favorites that you get from the outside for all competitions in the dressing room?

The Competition Judge admits that the Griezmann case is a minor offense

Futre surrenders to João Félix, not so Cholo Simeone

These things come from outside, they have little influence on us and especially in this dressing room, they have known for a long time what it has cost them to get here, where they were and where they are now. And the truth is that they have realized that sometimes you are very well, sometimes you are not so well and to become very well for so many years, for so long, it is based on a lot of work, the union of block and, above all, have that mentality of competing every day, which is the difficult thing.

Mario Hermoso, Atlético de Madrid defender, returned to work with the group on Monday, received a medical discharge from a muscle injury on Tuesday and entered Diego Simeone’s call-up for tonight’s game against Barcelona at Camp Nou , with the losses of Stefan Savic, Koke Resurrección and Sime Vrsaljko.

06/30/2020 at 1:38 PM CEST