Busi at El País
The man with one of the best jobs in the world, Luis Martín of El País, is back with another interview, this time of Sergio Busquets (Luis seems to get a great interview before each La Roja game).
Q: You celebrated the World Cup win with a flag of Badia. Can you explain to us what Badia is?
A: Ciudad Badia is my neighborhood, my life, where I grew up, where I went to school, where my friends and part of my family live… It’s a small neighborhood, with blocks of apartment buildings, where humble and hardworking people live.
Q: You’ve played many positions in your career. Did this help you to understand the game better?
A: I played as a forward until I was 14. Then, as a half forward and as a pivot, which are similar positions because they’re very tactical. But I see football the same wherever I play. I see it and I interpret it.
Q: You see it.
A: I try to. I try to think before I receive the ball to find solutions. I play to solve things for my teammates. That’s my main job.
Q: So you’re a working man among stars?
A: Yes, a bit. I’m the person that works so that everyone else around me are the best footballers in the world. But in Barcelona and the national team, the stars also work. I play in a position that demands hard work and generosity and little glamour, but I like it. It’s my job and I like it. I would rather intercept and steal 10 balls than shoot. That’s what I’m here for, to make everyone else’s jobs easier.
Q: Johan Cruyff says that you are able to anticipate what’s going to happen.
A: I try to. My position demands players that are intelligent, quick thinkers, quick decisions makers.
Q: Mascherano has said he would like to play like you. Pep, Beckenbauer, Cruyff have also praised you. Have do you keep your feet on the ground?
A: I would be stupid to believe that I already know everything. I like what’s said about me, because everyone likes compliments. It’s nice. But I don’t believe any of it, not even the part about me being a starter. None of it. What my father told me when I was young is still in my head: “you work. If you work, you’ll always be rewarded.”
Q: How is it having your father, Carles, as part of the coaching staff of the first team?
A: Good. He’s my father of course, but I see him as an assistant to Pep, as the goalkeepers’ coach.
Q: Of everything that has been said about you, what’s your favorite?
A: The best compliments are ones from teammates. It’s gratifying that they value the dirty work you do. It’s usually my teammates and coach that value my work, but that’s logical since it’s not a glamorous job. The coach knows that he has an obedient player that likes to help out, that will be more than happy to run to go help out a teammate if it’s necessary. I really do enjoy keeping track of which winger comes up to cover him, if the half forward is affected by pressure or not… I spend the game thinking and calculating how many there are on the left, on the right… The play of a midfielder has to be very logical. What does the situation require? That’s what I do. There’s not a lot of questions. You have to spend 90 minutes concentrating hard for this position. Defensively, my game is pure coherence, it’s very simple.
Q: This is your third season, and you’ve played 100 games in the first division. Do you feel different from the player that you were when you arrived?
A: I’m very happy with how I progressed. I feel better, more established, with more experience than when I arrived, and that makes me happy because I feel like I’ve improved. I hope to keep improving.
Q: In what ways have you matured?
A: I do things now that I didn’t do before, I’ve acquired technical concepts that I didn’t have, I have less doubts because I now know how the dynamics of the game go, I know what could happen, I can anticipate better. I feel more complete, but I still have the feeling that it’s more and more difficult to do well with each day.
Q: Who said, “míster, it took our arrival for you all to win something?”
A: It’s a joke that we have with Guardiola. And now Gerard and I have it with the national team.
Q: How do you motivate yourself?
A: With how wonderful it is to win. For example, this year I would really like to play the final in Wembley because that’s where my father won the first European Cup with Barça.
Q: What is the best game that you ever played?
A: I don’t know. I played well in Bilbao a couple of days ago. I even got confused and scored a goal.