Javier Mascherano insists Barcelona are not motivated by a desire to silence their critics as they bid to complete the job in Tuesday’s UEFA Champions League semi-final second leg at Bayern Munich.
Barca received criticism during the 2013-14 season as they failed to win a major trophy.
It has been a different story under Luis Enrique this term, though, with Barca one win away from winning La Liga, as well as reaching the Copa del Rey final and being on the brink of the UEFA Champions League final.
The Catalan giants will compete in the showpiece of Europe’s premier competition if they can successfully defend a 3-0 lead from last week’s first leg against German champions Bayern.
And Mascherano says that winning titles is the only concern for the squad.
“We don’t play to silence the critics, we play to meet the objectives and defend the prestige of this club,” he said.
“We’re only focused on what we can do on the pitch. We’re very excited about the game and playing a Champions League semi-final.
“For a footballer it’s one the most important matches in your career.”
Mascherano also stated that Barca have no intention of sitting on their lead, claiming such a tactic could backfire.
“Games are full of things that you can’t predict,” he added. “When we talk about being careful it’s because accidents can happen over 90 minutes that put the tie at risk.
“The best way not to put the tie at risk is to play as we always play, try to find the goal, try to win the game. We really only have one of playing. If we were to sit back and defend I’m sure it would work out badly for us.”