ANDRES INIESTA SAYS Barcelona are determined to regain their La Liga crown this season after being pipped to the title by Real Madrid last term.
The Spain international admits that Real Madrid are now the team to beat, but added that he and his team-mates are only more motivated to set things right following their second spot in the table in 2011-12.
“We will try to beat the champions. Trying to beat Real Madrid to win the league again is a real incentive,” Iniesta said. ”It gives us extra motivation. Now it’s our turn to try and wrestle the title away from them.”
Looking ahead to the upcoming Spanish Supercopa against Real Madrid, the attacking midfielder stressed the outcome of the tie will not have any influence on the La Liga season.
“It is important for us because it is the first title, against the current league champions. But the Supercopa will not affect the season,” he said. ”Obviously the aim is to win it, to do as well as possible. It is part of our preparations over these two months. The winner will gain morale and confidence compared to the loser, but it is just the start.”
Meanwhile, Iniesta stoked the transfer fires further after announcing his pleasure that Barcelona are being linked with a move for Arsenal ‘prodigy’ Alex Song. Recent speculation has suggested that the Catalans could be interested in acquiring the defensive midfielder’s services, with Arsene Wenger reportedly considering selling and bringing in Real Madrid misfit Nuri Sahin as a replacement.
A fee of at least £15million has been touted for the 24-year-old Cameroon international, and Iniesta believes any move will benefit Barcelona and Song.
“He’s a prodigy,” Iniesta said. ”I don’t know how many years he’s been playing but he isn’t a discovery from yesterday. He’s a good player and I’ve seen in a couple of publications that he could be joining our team.”
The Barcelona playmaker is unsure as to whether a move will materialise, but is confident Song has the ability to shine at Camp Nou. Iniesta continued: “I don’t know if that would be the case but if he comes here we’ll welcome him the best we can.
“If he comes here it’s because he has the ability to play here, no doubt.”