Casillas: I'm surprised Barcelona would make those videos

Iker Casillas - Real Madrid

Iker Casillas – Real Madrid

Real Madrid captain Iker Casillas has revealed he is surprised to hear of the rumours that Barcelona have put together a video of team-mate Pepe’s bad tackles on their players.

The Portuguese star stoked accusations between the clubs recently when he criticised Blaugrana players by saying that they went down theatrically under challenges in the last Clasico and Casillas admitted he was shocked to hear of the news.

“I’m surprised that Barca would make those videos,” Casillas was quoted as saying by Marca. “It’s normal for them to make them to analyse an opponent, but I don’t think this type of video is like Barca.”

The 142-capped Spain international also discussed recent claims that his side is interested in signing Radamel Falcao, who plays for Los Blancos‘ city-rivals, Atletico Madrid.

He added: “He’s a great forward, but they’re just rumours. He showed that at Porto and Atletico as well as now.

“It’s just part of football. Falcao can’t really help us this season.

“The ones I think about are [[Gonzalo] Higuain, [Karim] Benzema and [Alvaro] Morata. It’s not up to me to decide which players Real Madrid should sign.”

Iniesta: We've never seen any Pepe video

Barcelona midfielder Andres Iniesta has rejected the notion that his side put together a video of Real Madrid defender Pepe’s bad challenges against them.

The Portuguese star has become infamous amongst Camp Nou fans due to a number of robust challenges during clashes between the two sides.

However, Iniesta has denied any knowledge of a tape cataloguing the player’s fouls against his team.

“I want to be clear, we’ve never seen a video on a specific player [made by the club], not of Pepe or any other colleague,” the 28-year-old told reporters.

“The most recent Clasicos are what Clasicos should always be like.”

This echoed recent comments from Barca’s Director of Institutional Relations, Pere Gratacos, who was quoted by Europa Press as saying: “relationships are very good [with Madrid,] without any problem.”

Iniesta also spoke of his connections to Catalunya, after causing controversy in mid-week by claiming that he felt like a local, despite growing up in Albacete.

“It’s logical that I feel Catalan, if you don’t want to understand, you simply won’t. I’ve been living here for 16 years,” said the Spain international.

The Euro 2012 player of the tournament also talked about the Blaugrana’s upcoming Copa del Rey clash with Alaves, as well as his willingness to fill in wherever necessary in the side.

He added: “We have to [be] wary of Alaves. In theory we are the superior side, but we still have to play.

“It’s no secret that my favourite position is in the midfield, but I’m at the team’s service.”

Copa del Rey draw: Barcelona paired with Alaves, Real Madrid take on Alcoyano

Reigning Copa del Rey champions Barcelona have been paired with Segunda B side Alaves in the round of 32 in this season’s edition of the tournament.

The Catalans beat Athletic Bilbao 3-0 in the final of the competition last season, but they will now have to deal with the 2001 Uefa Cup runners-up first if they are to defend their title.

Real Madrid, meanwhile, will also meet a Segunda B side in the form of minnows Alcoyano, and could meet Barcelona in the semi-finals of the competition if they both teams make it to that stage of the Spanish cup.

Furthermore, Valencia will have to deal with Llagostera, while Atletico Madrid lock horn with Real Jaen, Bilbao meet Eibar, and Malaga face Cacereno.

The first leg of the round of 32 takes place on October 31, with the return scheduled for November 28.

Varane misses Madrid training due to muscle injury

Rafael Varane - Real Madrid

Rafael Varane – Real Madrid

Real Madrid coach Jose Mourinho has received some disturbing news from the treatment table in the build-up to this weekend’s La Liga match against Celta as he will possibly have to make do without the services of Raphael Varane due to injury.

The young defender sustained a muscular problem while away on international duty with France Under-21s, and missed Wednesday’s regular training session due to the knock.

Varane was restricted to doing individual exercises with the Madrid physio, and it remains to be seen whether he will be fully match fit in time for Saturday’s clash.

The Frenchman’s injury is yet another blow for Mourinho after Fabio Coentrao, Marcelo and Alvaro Arbeloa all picked up physical problems as well with their respective national sides.

Saturday’s match at the Santiago Bernabeu is scheduled to kick off at 18:00CET.

Barcelona film Pepe over four Clasicos in search for unsporting behavour, claims Catalunya Radio

Barcelona filmed Real Madrid defender Pepe to identify unsporting behaviour in four Clasico games, a radio station has claimed.

Catalunya Radio stated that footage of the Portugal international was recorded during the two-week spell in 2011 when the Spanish giants locked horns on four separate occasions.

In the programme ‘El club de la mitjanit’ it was claimed that the Blaugrana asked for the filming to take place in order to catch the 29-year-old engaging in unsporting behaviour against the likes of Lionel Messi.

It was not, however, revealed whether the footage was to be used to as evidence of any unsavoury actions from Pepe, or as a tactical tool for Pep Guardiola’s side to exploit.

The news tallies with Tito Vilanova’s recent comments about the former Porto defender in the wake of the recent 2-2 draw at Camp Nou, when the coach said: “you can make a film of all the times Pepe has kicked us,” after Pepe had claimed Barcelona’s players had acted “theatrically.”

According to the radio broadcast, the filming was done by the club’s scouting team, but then-coach Guardiola advised the club not to release the footage as it would become clear it had been organised by the club.