Real Madrid’s Gonzalo Higuain thinks Jose Mourinho’s motivational skills will be key to beating Barcelona in the sides’ Copa del Rey quarter-fin
The coach led Real to victory over the Catalans in the final of last season’s edition of the competition.
But Mourinho has come off second best overall to Pep Guardiola’s men, losing two out of three league meetings against Barca, as well as seeing his side edged out in last season’s Champions League semi-final tie and the Spanish Supercopa series.
In total, Mourinho has won only one of the eight Clasico clashes he has been involved in since moving to Madrid in 2010, losing four and drawing the other three.
But, speaking ahead of Wednesday’s Copa del Rey quarter-final first leg with Barca at the Santiago Bernabeu, Higuain said his Portuguese boss is the ideal man to inspire the side to greatness.
“The coach (Mourinho) is a great psychologist,” he told Goal.com.
“He demonstrates that in the most difficult moments, and he is preparing us very well for these matches, even though they have come early in the season.”
Higuain, who has spent five years at Real, has 83 goals for the capital club after his strike in Saturday’s 2-1 win over Mallorca.
He believes that victory has boosted the squad’s confidence ahead of the latest Clasico, but admitted either side could advance to the semi-finals of the competition.
“The victory last weekend at Mallorca, in the league, has given us even more morale for the cup tie against Barcelona,” he said.
“But these games against Barca will be very even and either of us can go through to the semi-finals. That’s the truth.”
“At Real Madrid we know that our rivals try harder (when they play us), and we are obliged to go out and win.”
“But I always play with the same intensity, whoever the rival.”