The Brazilian full-back still has a lot of affection for his former employers, but has some lingering anxieties about the Catalan fans...
Chelsea defender Juliano Belletti switched Barcelona for west London a year-and-a-half ago, and is looking forward to making a return to Catalunya when his current side make their way to the Camp Nou for an eagerly anticipated Champions League first leg tonight, although he does shave some anxieties about how the Barca fans will treat him on his return.
"I was very, very happy when I heard it was Barcelona, but of course it is not the kind of game I would like, to play against Barcelona," he told the Blues' official website.
"They have a beautiful history, I played three years there, amazing years with a lot of trophies, a lot of friends and after I scored in the Champions League final my relationship with the fans changed a lot.
"I haven't been back to the stadium, I don't know how I will feel, I have no idea.
"I don't know what I expect the reaction of the fans to be, I have seen many times in Sao Paolo, Villarreal, some ex-players who did a good job at the clubs, the fans don't have a good relation because he changed teams, so he is booed.
"The people in Barcelona told me, I received a lot of messages from friends there, they say I will have no problem, the fans love me, but still I worry."
Belletti went on to reveal that he still enjoys close contacts with many players at the Camp Nou, one of whom was also a popular figure at Stamford Bridge.
"I speak with Carles Puyol sometimes, Eidur Gudjohnsen who played here, people who work in the club," he added.
"When I go to
Barcelona sometimes I see the people who work there, so I try to keep
the relations with these guys, because they were happy years, the
friendship is worth keeping.
"One thing he [Gudjohnsen] always told me when we played together was the quality of the Chelsea team - the players, the people who work here, and behind the scenes of course. He had only good things to say about Chelsea."
As for tonight's clash between two giants of the European game, the Brazilian promised the fans a great spectacle, from a fixture rapidly taking on a classic status of its own."Barcelona and Chelsea have a little competition, they played a lot in the Champions League and today I think it is one of the best games in the world in all sports," he explained.
'There is so much quality, it is beautiful. The teams have beautiful football and the best players in the world play in these games. The people watching will enjoy."
Zack Wilson, Goal.com
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