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Luis Enrique: I haven't pleased everyone in enriching Barcelona spell

8:17 PM IST 26/05/17
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The coach remains proud of his work at Camp Nou and hopes to end it with a trophy as his side prepare for the Copa del Rey final

Luis Enrique has described his Barcelona coaching career as "enriching" but accepts that he has not been able to please everyone during his three seasons in charge at Camp Nou.

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Saturday's Copa del Rey final will be Luis Enrique's last match in charge, with the 47-year-old having confirmed that he will not extend his contract, which expires at the end of next month.

Barca won the treble in the former Spain international's first season before claiming the domestic double last year, but victory over Deportivo Alaves at Vicente Calderon this week represents his last chance to end his final campaign with a major trophy.

Despite winning eight trophies to date with the club he played for between 1996 and 2004, Luis Enrique has at times been criticised for his recruitments and for adopting a more direct style of play.

However, the former Celta Vigo boss insists he has been true to Barca's traditions and compared his spell in charge to an Aesop fable of 'The Man, The Boy And The Donkey', which tells of the fruitlessness of trying to please everyone.

"It's easy to focus on the good things; focusing on the bad wouldn't make sense. I'll focus on everything. It's been an enriching experience," he told a news conference on Friday.

"I haven't had to change my modus operandi since I started at Barca B. I've had it easy here and at every team I've been at.

"When they sign you, it's to win trophies and to be loyal to the Barca style, and we have 100 per cent done that. We've been unpredictable and won titles. It's a positive path.

"Of course, I've been wrong many times. It's like the story of the donkey, the grandfather and the grandson. No matter what you do, there will always be someone who won't be happy. They judge you when you make decisions, as a player and a coach. But I'll take the work I've done all day long.

"If I'd been told in my first press conference that I'd win eight trophies, I'd have signed for it. The prize [on Saturday] would round it off."

Asked about his plans beyond Barca, he replied: "I don't know. I'll enjoy my free time. I have personal projects but nothing complete on a professional level."

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Luis Enrique hopes for a "special" encounter against Alaves but he warned that Mauricio Pellegrino's side, who beat Barca 2-1 at Camp Nou in September's LaLiga clash, must not be underestimated.

"I'd like that, of course [for Barca to play a great game]. First and foremost because if we play well then we'll have a better chance of winning, and also because it was tough to get here.

"We want to enjoy the great atmosphere and try to beat Alaves. They more than worry me. I know they're a team in good form, who have had a season at a really high level.

"It's undoubtedly one of the best games you can play in because of the atmosphere and for the fact that the stadium is divided between the two sets of fans.

"It's a special game, one with the possibility of bringing my time to an end with a trophy."