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Frenkie De Jong: ‘Of Course’ FC Barcelona ‘Can Dream Of Winning The Champions League’

Frenkie de Jong believes that FC Barcelona can dream of winning the Champions League.

In an interview published by SPORT on Friday morning, the young Dutchman said: “I think that if we are at the top [of our game] we are one of the best teams in the world; at the end of the day, we are four victories away from proclaiming ourselves champions and if we show the best version [of ourselves] and we are plugged in and plan the matches well, we can win it, of course.”

Asked how Barça are on a “mental and emotional” level, De Jong responded: “We are doing well, there is positive energy in the team and we are looking forward to the match against Napoli. The sensations are really good.”

Probed on what his men should expect from the Italians in tomorrow’s last 16 second leg clash at the Camp Nou, De Jong responded: “We have seen videos of the first leg at the San Paolo [a 1-1 draw in February] and Napoli’s last clashes in Serie A. We know what we have to do, we know what we are going to do and we believe in it. But obviously I am not going to confess how we are going to play because everyone would know, including Napoli.”

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Regarding how the Blaugrana managed to let the La Liga title slip away to bitter rivals Real Madrid, De Jong said: “Like everyone else, I think it’s very difficult to win a league when you drop so many points. Of course we all ended up very disappointed by that. We know that we have to improve a lot, and all these weeks we have worked for that and to face the match against Napoli in the best shape. The feelings within the team are positive now.”

Confirming that he agreed with captain Lionel Messi’s angry tirade following the defeat that in-part crowned Los Blancos, De Jong said: “He was right, we had lost against Osasuna at home. With all my respect to them, the normal thing if you are Barça is to beat a team like this at home. I think it was normal for him to make those statements because we had just played some bad games.”

On what coach Quique Setien’s approach to rouse the troops has been, then, after such a setback, De Jong stressed that having “negative thoughts is no use anymore.” 

“Now we are looking forward to this Champions League match and we are 100% focused on winning against Napoli. So we have not touched on that subject again, just to correct mistakes and things that needed to be improved.”

“We are not afraid of anyone,” De Jong began in relation to the tournament’s favorites. “Obviously there are very strong teams in the running, it is difficult for me to bet on one or to tell you Bayern [Munich], Madrid, etc. I think that first you have to have the respect [for] Napoli [that they] deserve. It would be a lack of sensitivity to say that one or the other is more of a favorite. We will look at our objectives little by little.”


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