Mallorca’s Javier Aguirre on future and Real Madrid clash – ‘The Copa was dessert, La Liga is main course’

RCD Mallorca manager Javier Aguirre has remained coy on his future following his side’s Copa del Rey final agony during the penalty shoot-out to Athletic Club. There’s little respite for the Bermellones this weekend, as Real Madrid visit.

Carlo Ancelotti said his side would not be making major rotations for the clash, with many already looking ahead to their Champions League return leg against Manchester City. Aguirre explained that Mallorca could not have had anyone better.

“We couldn’t have had a better opponent because we can’t continue regretting what could have been and wasn’t, we can’t continue thinking about something that has already happened and we can’t continue thinking about it, that night was very cruel and very hard for everyone and now it has been put on hold, this week we have worked well trying to clear our heads although it is more difficult for some than others, of course, but we are physically and mentally well, and we are prepared and it is going to be a nice challenge for us.”

Aguirre asked his side to be organised and show personality, as recounted by Diario AS.

“Here we beat them last season and they beat us there, it is difficult to take the ball away from Madrid, it is difficult to put pressure on them, and it is difficult to play against them one-on-one, it is very complicated, the best way to face it is to be organised and have personality with very clear ideas and not failing when you have the opportunity, I am not going to discover anything new if I say that they are better and favorites, but in our stadium with our people and their support, with the team connected as it has been in recent weeks, I have hope and faith that something good can come out of the game.”

The Mexican manager was also very clear that La Liga was their main objective this season, and while it has been a treat to enjoy the Copa del Rey, his side must refocus.

“On my social networks, yesterday at the pharmacy they congratulated me, and it was a reward, not a punishment, it is the Cup final, in this dressing room there are many relegations and that is something to be pissed off at, a Cup final is to enjoy and that’s what people tell me, friends, colleagues from other teams, and this is football, it’s wonderful to reach the final and for Mallorca. It’s something that doesn’t happen every year and I said it, it was like a dessert and now we focus on the food, in the main menu, which is the first division.”

Mallorca forward Abdon Prats did not get on during the final, something Aguirre apologised to him for, and created plenty of dismay, both on his face and amongst the Mallorca fanbase. With Abdon’s permission, one of the fan groups has decided to print 5,000 Abdon masks to show their support for him, although they made it clear it was no shot at Aguirre.

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