FC Barcelona are clear about maintaining a good atmosphere within their locker room. Similar to other top clubs, harmony within the dressing room is key for Barcelona. The coach, players, and other staff members need to be on the same wavelength for a team to reach successful heights.
However, a recent comment made by German midfielder Ilkay Gundogan caused some controversy. Following the loss to Real Madrid, Gundogan publicly criticized the Barça dressing room for not showing enough emotion. While the media and various reports emphasized this comment, Xavi has recently offered his own reaction.
As highlighted by Mundo Deportivo, Xavi spoke about the incident in his recent press conference. Acknowledging it as something that is not negative, he rather stated that the dressing room agreed with it:
“The word conformity is not in Barça’s DNA. We strive for excellence. We haven’t seen Gündogan’s words as controversial; we agree with what he said.”
He further even acknowledged that the Clasico defeat was a result of their own negligence:
“We lost the Clásico due to our own mistakes. We haven’t created controversy in the locker room.”
Understanding Gundogan’s frustrations
The Barcelona coach then went on to defend Gundogan’s words as well. Claiming that his culture, referring to Germany, is different from that of Spain’s, he used an example of Thomas Muller from Bayern Munich:
“He (Gundogan) expressed the frustration that we all felt inside. His culture is different from ours. If you look at Bayern’s defeat the other day, Müller came out and criticized. It hasn’t caused any controversy in the locker room.”
This news will come as a source of major relief to the fans and coaches of Barcelona. Animosity within the dressing room can be quite detrimental existence. However, with the Real Sociedad clash coming up next, Barcelona will be grateful that this controversy has found its end and has been left in the past.