Euro 2012 news

Valdes: Clasico spite won't harm Spain

May 9, 2011
By ESPNsoccernet staff

Spain goalkeeper Victor Valdes insists the bitterness surrounding the recent bad-tempered clashes between Barcelona and Real Madrid will not have a negative impact on the Spanish national team.

Victor Valdes and Sergio Ramos handbags Barcelona
PA PhotosVictor Valdes and Sergio Ramos were among a number of Spain team-mates to clash in this season's Clasicos

This season's five Clasicos have produced plenty of ill-feeling between arch-rivals Barca and Real who between them contributed ten of the 11 players who started for Spain in last summer's World Cup final triumph over the Netherlands.

Spanish fans and media have expressed their concerns that relationships between those players have been irreparably damaged by recent events and that the reigning European and World champions could be adversely affected.

But Barca No. 1 Valdes, who is behind Real goalkeeper Iker Casillas in the national team pecking order, believes any bad blood from this season's clashes will be put to one side when Real and Barca players join forces in Spain's friendly meeting with USA in June.

"I am convinced the good vibes will continue for La Roja," Valdes said. "I have no personal relationship with Real Madrid players, but I don't think all this [trouble] will pass onto the national side as what happens on the pitch remains there. Also, I don't think it's good to speak about it."

Spain coach Vicente del Bosque had recognised the potential for disharmony before last Tuesday's Champions League semi-final second leg, though he was also keen to stress his belief that any disagreements between players would soon be forgotten.

"I appreciate the concern showed by fans and media that the mood in the last few games could lead to possible collateral damage that could affect the relationship between players of both sides within the Spanish football team," Del Bosque said.

"They are used to this kind of game and this rivalry is not new. It is my hope that [the tension] does not pass over or move to the [national team]."