Juan Antonio Pizzi (7-6-1968) played two seasons at Barça and lived the first global Classics, which faced Madrid’s Roberto Carlos, Suker, Seedorf and Mijatovic against Barça de Ronaldo, Figo or Giovanni. Pizzi’s memory, however, is inevitably associated with the goal he made to Atlético. “They still pay me for meals in Barcelona. That’s for 5-4, they tell me.” In his already extensive, vibrant and fruitful career as a coach, he has the tremendous merit of being a winner of the Copa América with the Chile of Arturo Vidal, current Barça player. Pizzi chatted with AS.-Why about Lizard? -That was born in Tenerife. There was a cartoon that was Lizard Juancho. They told me Juanchi and there was a journalist who used the Lizard thing. And there he stayed.-What did it mean for you to play a Classic?-The Madrid-Barça derby is the most transcendent game that can be played worldwide.-Use derby, not Classic. Out of respect for the Boca River Superclassic?-It’s a matter of terminology. The important thing is the importance it has. Playing those games is indelible and that game is increasingly seen in South America. In part, of course, thanks to Messi.-You did not score in a Classic, but in the Bernabéu.-Yes. In the Cup final. Betis came very well, very well. And it was 2-1 up. Then Pep got a good center and I finished it off. We were able to go to extra time and lift the Cup.-But his most famous goal in that Cup was not that of the final.-That goal (5-4 at Atlético de Madrid in one of the most famous comebacks in the history of the Cup) meant a lot of things. More than 20 years have passed and they still pay me meals in Barcelona. I’m eating in a restaurant, I ask for the bill and they tell me: you don’t pay today. This is for 5-4. I think that sometimes one is not aware of the dimension of football and, in this particular case, the joy that I could give people. I will always be grateful to the people of Barcelona for their treatment.-Let’s go to the Classic. From your current prism, which is no longer a player but a coach, how do you see it?-I think that Barça has been changing its historical style in recent months, but I think that against Madrid will not happen. It seems to me that Barça will have a lot of ball circulation, that it will set the tone in the game and that Madrid will be doomed to tow. The European defeat I think can also be an important factor. It has been a hard stick. It is an important blow for Madrid. I see a Barça that arrives more strengthened, who has an emotional advantage and who has the only player who can make a difference in the match, Messi. LaLiga Santander* Data updated as of February 28, 2020 – Do you think that Barça should play a game with four midfielders?I am not nomenclatures. That is clichés of journalists, and also of us coaches. Today, the systems are elastic, like the versatility of the players. I have seen laterals play with the Barça el Clásico. What I do believe in is the numerical part. And Barça’s style is more adapted to people who come by surprise, so I think it will use one more player in the center.-Well, if he plays with four midfielders, Braithwaite will not start. He has arrived at Barça with a revulsive role, basically the one you had that he had. What should Braithwaite do in your opinion, to be useful to Barça and win over people as revulsive?– Humble and intelligent. Humble to know that he arrives at a top-level club with tremendous players and that he has to play his role. And smart to know that he does not compete with anyone, but should take advantage of his minutes.-How did you do it to be Ronaldo’s revulsive?First, knowing that I was not Ronaldo’s revulsive, but his partner. I had 15 or 20 minutes to visualize what I could do to revolutionize the game. For that I needed my colleagues to trust me. And that was done by convincing them with actions that you did not seek your good but that of the team. It was interesting. In the end, that affected the good of the team and mine, because if I was able to give the team what it demanded, I played the next game more.-I wanted to ask about Vidal. You directed him as a coach of Chile. Here in Barcelona he is a discussed player. How would you defend it?– It seems unnecessary to defend him. He does not need it. And it is clear that, for all that he does, he is an indispensable footballer. He is a born winner and deserves to be considered as such. He is a player that perfectly complements other players with another style in Barça.-What would you give to lead a Classic as a coach?They are matches with little access for coaches. It is difficult to be in Madrid or Barça. That’s why I ask Zidane and Setién to enjoy it.– That Setién was appointed coach of Barça without having directed any great motivates him?-I see it as an opportunity presented to him. His career as a coach, his style and philosophy of play, enable him to be in Barça.-I just finished with a curiosity. You, in 1996, in the Sánchez Pizjuán Bobby Robson made him enter the field as revulsive. However, Barça stayed with ten, had to remove a striker and took away from you instead of Ronaldo. You threw in a towel and a good mess could form. After the game, Robson said: “I had to remove a striker, Pizzi or Ronaldo. My choice was Pizzi.” Now that you are a coach, do you regret that?-I remember perfectly. I still regret that action. Sometimes it is difficult to control that mood and frustration. I try that the soccer players understand that and that they put themselves in that situation but it is not simple.– Has it happened to him like technician?That way. If it happened to me, I would have to find some solution to twitch my footballer as little as possible.