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The Blaugrana technical director has found the perfect justification for the harsh dismissals of Ronaldinho and Deco last summer…

Barcelona's technical director, Txiki Begiristain, has come out to defend the club's brave decision to give Ronaldinho and Deco the boot last year following a disastrous campaign, a move that has since paid handsome dividends.

“It was a necessary move because the coach had to work with a proper team and an appropriate squad,” he said during an interview with Barca’s official magazine.

“We thought that it would be too risky to continue with the same players and it wasn’t worth the gamble.

“Besides with the departures, we gave the dressing room a massive shake-up, we freed up space in the squad, we modified some roles and redefined a few others.

“If Lionel Messi is number one today, it is partly because they relinquished their place and that allowed him to take over.”

Txiki then went on to analyse why and how Barca have won plaudits all over the world for their unmistakable style of football, based on the 4-3-3 formation that was pioneered by a certain Dutch master 20 years ago.

“[Johan] Cruyff outlined a system which became the ‘Dream Team’. [Frank] Rijkaard then made it evolve when he adapted the style to today’s game, especially from a physical aspect, and he gave the team a new character,” he theorised.

“Now, what we’re seeing is that Pep Guardiola has continued to evolve Rijkaard’s style. The group work differently, with much more complexity. The other big adjustment is that the team is based on the freedom of the players.

“Pep is the first off-spring of the ‘Dream Team’ and he has made us even more effective.”

KS Leong, Goal.com

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