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  Sports   Football  27 Jul 2017  Pep made every training session easy, says Dimas Delgado

Pep made every training session easy, says Dimas Delgado

THE ASIAN AGE. | SANDEEP MENON
Published : Jul 27, 2017, 7:02 am IST
Updated : Jul 27, 2017, 7:02 am IST

Delgado was on the bench that night, having just swapped his Barcelona shirt for a chance to play in the top division.

Dimas Delgado
 Dimas Delgado

Bengaluru: “At the beginning, it was strange as I was in a different changing room. Before the game when I went out I knew all the players and I knew what they were going to do,” recalls Dimas Delgado.

“But when you are playing, you try to do your best and do everything for the club and jersey. It was good that we won the game,” he finished with a smile.

For a moment, Delgado was transported back to the opening day of the 2008 season when his side, the newly-promoted Numancia defeated Catalan powerhouse Barcelona under a young manager named Pep Guardiola. The match has since become a folklore in Spanish football.

BFC players at a training session. BFC players at a training session.

Delgado was on the bench that night, having just swapped his Barcelona shirt for a chance to play in the top division. But one season before that he was under the supervision of Guardiola at Barcelona B.

“It was a fantastic year in Barcelona B. Pep made it easy for the players. He knows football and every training session was easy. It looked like he knew what was going to happen next,” revealed the 34-year-old.

“It was a great pleasure (to train with Barcelona first team). Actually those players make it pretty easy. You just need to follow them. Everything will flow. That’s it. It was unbelievable. To go with Ronaldinho, Samuel Eto’o and the rest, just wow!”

It’s easy to see why Albert Roca wanted to bring in the veteran midfielder. 

He is, after all, as close to a perfect blend of what Roca is looking for. Tuned to the Barcelona style of play with strong knowhow of Asian football following two seasons with Western Sydney Wanderers, the second of which he ended up captaining the A-League side.

‘Club’s approach is my style too’
“I know this club is trying to bring that philosophy, to control the tempo, keep the ball. That’s my style too. I am lucky because many coaches I had in my career believe in this philosophy,” said the former Barcelona man after the first day of pre-season. 

“The coach hasn’t spoken to me just yet. Today was just the first day. We should be talking more about it soon,” he added.

There is a Spanish flavour, and an ever increasing one at that, to BFC now. And though the former Recreativo Huelva midfielder was aware of Bengaluru and their exploits at the Asian level, having played in the AFC Champions League, it was the distinct Spanish-ness of the club that tilted the balance for Delgado.

“When (the) BFC option appeared it was an interesting one because I knew the coaches and all the Spanish players in the club,” explained the midfielder.

“When we were in Barca B, Roca was the assistant coach to (Frank) Rijkaard. I know him. That’s one of the principal reasons I am here. So it was a good option to pick. I have a wife and a daughter back in Spain. My daughter is four months old and Australia is so far from Spain. 

Now I am very happy here. We are going to Spain (pre-season) and hopefully, I can spend time with my family. After that, I hope they can come in November when the season starts,” he signed off with a smile.

Tags: dimas delgado, pep guardiola