Javier Mascherano: Focus on Chelsea, not Real Madrid

Javier Mascherano
© PA Photos
Barcelona defender Javier Mascherano urges his teammates to focus on Wednesday's Champions League semi-final against Chelsea and not next weekend's La Liga showdown with Real Madrid.

Barcelona defender Javier Mascherano has urged his teammates to focus on Wednesday's Champions League semi-final against Chelsea and not next weekend's La Liga showdown with Real Madrid.

The Catalan club travel to Stamford Bridge in midweek for the first leg of their last-four tie against the Premier League side.

However, they would be able to cut Madrid's domestic lead down to a point with victory at the Nou Camp on Saturday.

Despite the busy schedule, Mascherano believes that his team's focus should only be on their next match.

"The main thing right now is Wednesday's match. Afterwards, we'll think about the league and Real Madrid," the Argentine told reporters.

"We're in a Champions League semi-final and we have a great opportunity to reach the final. It would be a really big mistake to focus on Real Madrid first, because Wednesday's match is very difficult and will go a long way to deciding the tie.

"It'll be a really difficult tie that will depend a lot on getting a good result in the first leg against a team that has always been characterised by their tremendous physical strength, and which has some really experienced players."

Barca are bidding to become the first club to retain the Champions League trophy following its rebranding in 1992.

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TeamPWDLFAGDPTS
1Real Madrid15114040142637
2Barcelona1594237152231
3Sevilla148332520527
4Real Sociedad158252621526
5Atletico MadridAtletico1474328111725
6Villarreal146531910923
7Athletic Bilbao147252017323
8EibarEibar156452119222
9Las PalmasLas Palmas155642623321
10Malaga155642422221
11Celta Vigo146352426-221
12Espanyol144731717019
13AlavesAlaves154651417-318
14Real Betis144371728-1115
15Leganes154381226-1415
16Deportivo La CorunaDeportivo153482027-713
17Valencia153392129-812
18Sporting GijonSporting Gijon143381528-1312
19Granada151681431-179
20Osasuna1514101332-197
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