Barcelona warmed up for the 2022/23 campaign in style as they thrashed Mexican side Pumas 6-0 at Camp Nou to win the Joan Gamper Trophy.
It took just three minutes for Barça to take the lead, with Robert Lewandowski scoring his first goal for the Blaugrana from a difficult angle. Pedri doubled the Catalans’ lead two minutes later before Ousmane Dembele made it 3-0 in the tenth minute.
About nine minutes later, Barcelona were four goals to the good, with Pedri doubling his tally on the evening. Xavi made changes to the side at half-time, but that did not stop the Catalans from continuing their spree as Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang made it 5-0 in the 49th minute.
There was time for the Catalans to add a sixth one late in the game, with exit-linked midfielder Frenkie de Jong finding the back of the net in the 84th minute to add more sheen to the scoreline.
Talking about the result and the pre-season as a whole, manager Xavi said: “Overall, we had a good pre-season. It was dynamic, with good football, and good results. The sensations are very good.”
The manager also touched upon the amazing squad depth that Barcelona have, saying: “I have many options and it will be difficult to decide on the starting XI, but this is a good thing. Competition makes everyone better.”
Hailing the energy and the intensity that his team showed, Xavi added: “With this intensity and desire levels, we’re doing well. Intensity is indisputable. However, there are a lot of things we have to improve.”
The Barcelona manager also addressed the future of De Jong, stating: “I don’t know what will happen to Frenkie de Jong. Until August 31st anything can happen, but he knows what I think and what the club want and need. Of course I’m counting on him, he’s a great player.”
There have been a lot of speculations surrounding the futures of Miralem Pjanic and Nico Gonzalez of late, with reports claiming that the former is set to stay put at Barça, which could see the latter leave on loan.
Addressing those rumours, Xavi said: “Both Nico and Pjanic can help us a lot. Even though he didn’t play today, I think Pjanic can help us a lot because of the way we play.”
Barcelona will play their La Liga season-opener at Camp Nou next Saturday against Rayo Vallecano. And manager Xavi will hope that his team can carry forward the momentum they have generated in the pre-season.