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Roura calms statue row

Jordi Roura has played down any potential aggravation caused by a statue of Christopher Columbus being covered in a Barcelona shirt.

The famous monument in the Catalan capital has been draped in the Liga champions’ kit for next season with Espanyol supporters’ groups calling on their side to shun a guard of honour when they square off on Sunday.

But Roura has moved to distance the club with the actions and believes that Espanyol will honour his side, but is unconcerned if they choose not to.

“Well, regarding the tribute, whatever the fans will do, I’ve always said that anyone can do whatever they want, I’m not the one to judge anything,” he said.

“Anyone can act as they consider best, players have said they will do the tribute, we don’t have an opinion everyone is free and as for the fans, of course, they can do anything they like. We are not the people to judge.”

Barca have cantered to the Spanish title this season, but Tito Vilanova’s right-hand man has challenged the squad to maintain a high standard of play going into the final game of the campaign at Cornelia El-Prat.

He added: “We intend to be at our best and we’re convinced Espanyol will be exactly the same. Just because this is a derby the intensity will be really high.

“They’re a great team, intense, strong, self confident with a great counter-attack and we expect the match to be very intense and difficult”
Sat 25 May, 2013
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