“We have done seven work micro-cycles, 38 training sessions to date. The players have taken part in 190 videoconferences with the technical managers. Across all these days, there have been 1,900 hours of work by the entire team and more than 2,500 messages”. This is how Rufete started his assessment, in which he analysed the mandatory confinement that the team has kept since 16 March, the day since when it has no longer been possible to return to training. The Sports Director has explained the different issues that players have had to face and the way footballers will feel when they return individually to the Ciutat Esportiva Dani Jarque.
Rufete has acknowledged that the club’s main concern, from day one, was the health of all the infected players in the first team and the responsibility “to know how their situation will develop from now on. We have the obligation to look after our players”.
He admitted that the team will encounter “many complex moments and a lot of uncertainty, because we cannot treat as normal something that is not normal”. Moreover, he is worried about the eventuality of new positive cases, “because such players will have little time to try to finish the competition”.
He also pointed out that “I always want to compete, but football has taught me that health is essential. Our main rival is the virus”.
He emphasizes that “before we get to competitive games, there is very important work, and the work and effort that our players have made has to be recognized. When we go out onto the pitch we will do it with the belief that we are going to remain in the First Division”.
For this reason, when asked about the possibility of “official relegation”, he pointed out that “we are not considering any scenario other than continuing in the First Division. That is our plan. And we will do so by competing and showing that we want to finish the League beyond 30 June. Our fans must rest assured that our plan, our only plan is to be in the First Division, and that we are preparing to defend it by giving one hundred and ten percent”.
The Blue and Whites’ sports manager has also revealed that, during the first weeks of confinement, “we have done a lot of work with our players so that they would have peace of mind and normality. We have done a good job. That’s been our focus since the beginning. There are still games to play and let’s wait and see how all this ends. We will not let anybody tells us what to do because we are bottom of the table. No. We are not going to shut up because we are at the bottom of the table”, and he predicted that “what happens in the following months may have a great impact on what happens in the coming years”.
Finally, in addition to showing his misgivings at the situation that may arise from playing games behind closed doors, Rufete has insisted that “our fans are not only essential but necessary in the history of our club”, emphasizing the role played by the Blue and Whites supporters “because they have helped many people. They have shown a lot of solidarity. That is commendable. This shows the quality of the people this club has”.