Pique delight over new Barca deal
Barcelona defender Gerard Pique is delighted to have signed a three-year extension to his contract, tying him to the Nou Camp club until June 2015. Pique, a former Barcelona youth team player, has impressed since returning from Manchester United in 2008 and was an ever-present in the Catalans' treble-winning season in his first year back.
The 23-year-old, whose contract was due to expire in 2012, becomes the 10th Barca player to renew his deal this season and is keen to lift as many trophies as possible.
"I'm happy I'm staying," Pique told Barca TV. "It seems that I will be here for many years and that makes me happy. I want to continue winning. The sensation and the happiness of victory makes you really want to repeat it. And now we still have some good aims."
Barca won an incredible six trophies in 2009 and are firmly on course to defend their Primera Division and Champions League titles. Club president Joan Laporta was among those present as Pique put pen to paper on his new deal - which has also seen the defender's release clause quadrupled from 50 million euros to 200.
And the Barca chief believes Pique will continue to make history at the Nou Camp and go on to captain the Catalan giants. "It's a historic day," he said. "Gerard's extension means that we have a talented player for many years. The attitude, the knowledge and the esteem that he constantly demonstrates for Barca makes him a reference and a symbol. I am convinced that he is destined to be captain of Barca."
Yaya Toure, Victor Valdes, Pedro, Lionel Messi, Carles Puyol, Eric Abidal, Andres Iniesta, Rafael Marquez and Jeffren have all signed new contracts this season, while coach Pep Guardiola has also agreed a new deal.