Barcelona goalkeeper Victor Valdes has heaped praise on Pep Guardiola, saying that the coach has instilled a winning mentality within the team.
"I have been trained to believe that the coach is the figure that you have to respect within a team and that you should follow the most," he told the club's official website. "He led me down the road to victory and I hope to have that mentality until I retire. I have grown at a tactical level and I want to win things every day and learn new things in training - that's what he's given me."
Former Barca player Zlatan Ibrahimovic criticised Guardiola in his autobiography and Valdes was quick to defend his boss. The 29-year-old then warned his teammates that Athletic Bilbao should not be underestimated ahead of their clash on Sunday at San Mames.
"It's important to win this match," he continued. "We know the intensity that Athletic have with Marcelo Bielsa."
Barcelona is one point behind Real Madrid at the top of the Liga table.