Gerard Pique calls for Barcelona focus amid social media controversy

Ahead of facing Napoli in the Champions League, Gerard Pique is keen for Barcelona to stay focussed.

Gerard Pique: "We will have to be very concentrated in order not to get badly surprised."   -  Getty Images

Gerard Pique told Barcelona to remain undistracted ahead of facing Napoli amid the social media controversy at the club.

Barcelona earlier this month denied allegations made by Spanish radio network Cadena SER that it hired a company to damage the image of people associated with the club by spreading negative messages on social media platforms. But Pique is keen to ensure his team is focussed ahead of the first leg of its Champions League last-16 tie in Naples.

"We just try to be focussed on our task as for this club in the last few years it has been massive what happens on the pitch," he told a news conference. Just the results have been holding back the entire club, so we know how important it is [to get results].

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"The responsibility we have as Barcelona players to try to keep winning on the pitch. If not, there will be troubled water."

'A difficult one'

Despite the off-field controversy, Barcelona is two points clear atop La Liga and goes into its tie with Napoli as favourite. But Pique warned his team the Serie A giant would lift for the last-16 tie. "It is the first time Barca comes to Napoli to play at such a historic stadium. A football player always wants to live new experiences, so coming here is one of them," he said.

"Regarding Napoli, they have improved a lot lately. They did not start well this season but have improved a lot lately. It will be a very difficult one. They have beaten Juventus and they beat Liverpool at the group stage. They raise their level against the big teams, so we will have to be very concentrated in order not to get badly surprised."

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