Barcelona full-back Daniel Alves has rubbished claims team-mate Gerard Pique deliberately picked up a yellow card against Rayo Vallecano.
Pique was handed a caution for time-wasting during the closing stages of the 4-0 win at Camp Nou on Tuesday, taking his tally to five for the season, thus ruling him out of this weekend’s clash with Levante.
However, there have been claims the defender got himself cautioned deliberately so that he would not run the risk of missing the December 10 meeting with La Liga leaders Real Madrid. Should Pique be found guilty of that charge, he would pick up a two-game ban.
Alves, though, is in no doubt that his team-mate has done nothing untoward and believes that the incident is being blown out of proportion.
“Once again everyone is looking at Barcelona very closely, everything we do is frowned upon,” Alves told Marca.
“We have to focus on ourselves and ignore the comments from outside which are trying to destabilise (us).”
Alves was more happy to focus on the performance of Alexis Sanchez against Rayo, with the off-season signing from Udinese scoring twice in one of his most impressive outings to date for Barca.
“I am very happy for him,” Alves said. “(He) works well, has been quite successful in front of goal and ultimately was able to score two goals.”