Ilkay Gundogan explains reasons for stinging Barcelona teammate criticism | OneFootball

Ilkay Gundogan explains reasons for stinging Barcelona teammate criticism | OneFootball

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·20 April 2024

Ilkay Gundogan explains reasons for stinging Barcelona teammate criticism

Article image:Ilkay Gundogan explains reasons for stinging Barcelona teammate criticism

Barcelona midfielder Ilkay Gundogan says it's important for teammates to look into each others' eyes and speak out if it will ultimately benefit the team.

The German midfielder openly criticised Ronald Araujo for getting himself sent off in the second leg of Barcelona's Champions League quarter-final tie against French giants Paris Saint-Germain - a game the Catalan giants would go on to lose 4-1 after going a goal up through Raphinha.

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Araujo was dismissed when Barcelona were leading 1-0 for dragging down Bradley Barcola when the young forward was advancing on goal, with Gundogan complaining after the game that "in these kinds of crucial moments you need to be sure to get the ball."

Uruguayan defender Araujo refused to engage in a public feud with Gundogan when questioned about his comments, but hinted at disgruntlement by saying he operates with "codes and values that must be respected".

Gundogan has followed up on his comments in an interview with ESPN, where he outlined the importance of communication in order to come together and improve as a collective.

"The mood is good. The training session was good that we finished just now. We are looking ahead," he said ahead of Barcelona's heavyweight clash with Real Madrid on Sunday.

"I think that is how the most successful teams develop and improve, by communicating, by looking into each others' eyes and speaking for the benefit of every single person.

"But also, at the end of the day, the ultimate target is for the benefit of the club. We are all here to make the club better, to bring the club in the best possible situation and to be successful.

"From my first day here, everyone is aligned with that. Of course, there are sometimes situations where you have to clear things [up], but the intention from every single person in this club is very genuine towards the success of this amazing club."

He continued when probed about what's left of Barcelona's season: "Even though it's very frustrating to be knocked out [of Europe] in such a style, I still really believe that this can be a big push, especially in the Champions League, and a big learning effect for next season.

"I played more than 10, 11 or 12 Champions Leagues in my career and just won it once. And I had so many difficulties throughout those Champions League campaigns, so many defeats with all my teams.

"So you learn from every single one and at one point you get to know what it takes to have the best possible chances to go far and still some aspects of the game are decided by just little details that can be also luck sometimes. It is something we have to overcome as a team to get better.

"Defeats are part of the game. One thing is to learn from it and to use as motivation to do better next time. The next big challenge and opportunity is just around the corner on Sunday."

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