Barca desperate to maintain unbeaten La Liga record


—File photo

MADRID: Barcelona defender Lucas Digne has admitted he and his team-mates are desperate to avoid surrendering their unbeaten La Liga record to Real Madrid on Sunday.

Barca are four games away from adding a first invincible La Liga season to their domestic double but this weekend they host a Real side in form, and buoyed by their run to the Champions League final.

This Clasico at the Camp Nou may not carry much importance in terms of the table but Real’s success in Europe is threatening to overshadow Barca’s success in the league.

Digne, speaking exclusively to AFP, said finishing the campaign undefeated has now become key.

“It’s that consistency, it shows the hard work of the whole group throughout the season, it’s huge,” Digne said.

“Of course, this is a record the team now wants to go for. It is important for us and we will give everything to hold on to it.”

Barca also still feel the need to atone for their Champions League collapse against Roma, which hangs over the club, despite their domestic success.

Real’s subsequent march to the final has only deepened the sense of disappointment.

“Real winning the Champions League is still hypothetical, it is not done yet,” Digne said.

“There are two sides to our season — we would have hoped to go further in the Champions League and we thought we could have won it but that didn’t happen.

“The double is still something exceptional and we are still undefeated in the league. We have to remember it is still a very strong season.”

There is an undercurrent that this meeting with Real will go some way to defining how Barcelona’s season is perceived.

“Quite simply, it’s the biggest match in the world,” Digne said. “There is an expectation that is just amazing and a rivalry between the two clubs that goes back a very long way.—AFP