Pinto wants fitting finale for Guardiola
Barcelona goalkeeper Jose Pinto is determined to give Pep Guardiola the ideal farewell this weekend by winning what would be a 14th trophy of the outgoing coach's record-breaking spell in the hotseat.
Guardiola will be leaving the Catalan giants at the end of this season, bringing to an end a relationship that has yielded two UEFA Champions League crowns, three La Liga trophies, one Copa del Rey, three Supercopas, two UEFA Super Cups and two FIFA Club World Cups in just four years.
There could still be one more addition to that collection as well, with Barça facing Athletic Bilbao in the Copa del Rey final in Madrid on Friday in what will be Guardiola's final match in charge.
When asked how the Barça players will be feeling going into the final knowing Guardiola is departing, Pinto said: "It's hard to define, we don't like that he's leaving. The last match will be sad, we have to win to turn that sadness into joy so we can give him a happy send off. I hope it works out this way, we're motivated. We're all awaiting that moment."
Pinto, who has played in each round of the Copa del Rey in place of first-choice custodian Victor Valdes, knows it will not be easy to beat Athletic, though, in what is a battle between the two most successful teams in the competition's history.
Athletic have been hugely impressive in their first season under Marcelo Bielsa and, as well as reaching the domestic cup final, also went all the way in the UEFA Europa League before losing to Atletico Madrid.
Pinto was part of the Barça side that beat Athletic 4-1 in the 2009 final but he does not believe that match will bear any relevance to Friday's encounter.
Pinto told Barca TV: ""Every team modifies itself every year. It's obvious that Athletic have improved a lot. They are a very competitive side. They play well and their manager is responsible for this positive change. It will be a very hard-fought and a very nice final. I've followed them and I believe that they are one of the standout teams of the year."