Mallorca vs Barcelona preview - Guardiola better than Mourinho - Rosell

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Posted Saturday, February 26, 2011 by PA

Barcelona president Sandro Rosell believes Pep Guardiola is a better option as coach than Real Madrid's Jose Mourinho at the Catalan club.

Mallorca vs Barcelona preview - Guardiola better than Mourinho - Rosell

Guardiola signed a one-year extension this week to remain at Barca until the end of next season and should he complete it, will become only the fourth coach to last for four or more entire campaigns at the Nou Camp.

Since his arrival in 2008, Guardiola has led Barca to eight trophies already, and with the club still fighting for three more at the business end of the current campaign, Rosell says renewing his coach's contract was an easy decision to make.

"Every day that goes by, I like our (club) model more, and I like it even better with Pep," he told Tv3.

"We are delighted to have him here."

And Rosell says Guardiola's sentimental attachment to Barcelona makes him a better option than Mourinho.

"Pep represents Barca sentimentally, while Mourinho only represents Madrid professionally," he said.

"And Mourinho is a lot more expensive than Pep," he added.

Barca have a five-point lead over Madrid with 14 rounds of the Primera Division remaining, but Guardiola has key players missing for the trip to Mallorca.

Captain Carles Puyol, goalkeeper Victor Valdes and midfielder Xavi all miss out through injury, while right-back Dani Alves is suspended.

Barca's only defeats this term have come when Puyol has been unavailable, while the absence of Xavi and Alves creates a selection headache for Guardiola.

Three youth-team players - midfielder Thiago Alcantara, goalkeeper Ruben Mino and right-back Martin Montoya - have all been drafted into the squad as cover, although none are likely to start at the Iberostar Stadium.

Despite those worries and a stubborn Madrid side, Mallorca coach Michael Laudrup - who played for both of Spain's big two - believes the Catalans will win the Primera Division title for the third year running.

"I believe they will be champions because they have more points and will be able to slip up several times, unlike Madrid," he told Sport in an interview.

The Danish coach, however, believes the title will go down to the wire.

"I've been in Spanish football for 20 years and I've never seen a title decided at the end of January or in February," he said.

"It will be decided in May."

Laudrup was a member of Barca's mythical `Dream Team' under Johan Cruyff, but the Dane believes the current version is even better.

"This Barca and (Frank) Rijkaard's are better than the one from my era - they have more individual resources," he said.

"Pep's team is the best one of all; even without the ball they pressure all the time and they have (David) Villa, (Lionel) Messi, Pedro, Xavi, (Andres) Iniesta and Alves.

"The `Dream Team' will always have one thing they haven't got, though - we came before them."

At Mallorca, the scenario is very different.

"We have very little money and most of the players are in their first year in the top division," Laudrup added.

"But I work with the peace of mind that there are good football people here and they let me get on with my job."

Laudrup is set to be without defender Ivan Ramis and striker Victor Casadesus for the game.

Mallorca, in 11th place with 31 points, surprisingly held Barca to a 1-1 draw at the Nou Camp earlier this season.

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