Gerard Pique challenges Barca to prove superiority


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Gerard Pique says he expects Barcelona to again be the team to beat in Spain as they are the best side in the country.

Despite a few blips towards the end of the campaign, the Blaugrana won the La Liga and Copa del Rey double but could only watch on as domestic rivals Real and Atletico Madrid contested the Champions League final.

Los Blancos won the duel between the Spanish capital’s two big clubs on penalties and it again looks set to be an extremely tight three-horse race this season.

Barca have signed a number of reinforcements this summer and have started the campaign in style, winning the Super Cup against Sevilla before opening their La Liga campaign with a 6-2 hammering of Real Betis.

Real also won on the opening weekend but Atletico struggled to a draw. Pique believes the strength in depth at the Nou Camp means they will again be the team to beat in Spain and has challenged his team-mates to prove they are better than their rivals.

“The goal is to win trophies,” he said. “It’s very important because we have shown we are the best team in the country by far. Two consecutive doubles hasn’t been done often. That means we are the team to beat.

“We’ll try to win trophies as we have done in the last few years. We’ve done a lot with Luis Enrique. This year is a challenge.”

Barcelona are currently the 1.67 favourites to defend their La Liga crown, with Real priced at 2.40 and Atletico at 13.00.

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