Graham reveals that while Barcelona are still highly motivated, the team still needs a tweak now and again.
He was saying that Pep Guardiola has always been obsessed by positional play.
“Just after the defeat at Osasuna, Guardiola said,’Some things have gone wrong, lads, there’s a minor re-adjustment needed.’
“Whether Barcelona are on the ball or off the ball, Pep Guardiola felt that, because of the number of changes, the number of injuries, and the oscillation from a three at the back to four at the back, that several players, the new players particularly, had just lost a bit of focus about exactly where they should be for pressing, and supporting the ball player.
“He walked them through it on the training pitch, over two days, interrupted when he wasn’t happy. That slight re-adjustment was put them exactly back, calibrated where they need to be.”
So there you have it.
Total football isn’t just talent and flair and desire.
Total football needs maintenance by a demanding coach. And I reckon the best players should have the most demanding teacher.
Because all great teams needs loads of automatic. Pep insists on that and he’s lucky to be able to deploy Xavi, the Napoleon of automatic.
Barcelona are not high-maintenance. The team is self-motivated.
But sometimes their teamwork needs to be re-calibrated.
Why do Barcelona win everything?
Because of Messi and Pep.
Because their teamwork is superior to the teamwork of their rivals.