Home Sports FC Barcelona Star Ronald Araujo Responds To Ilkay Gundogan Criticism

FC Barcelona Star Ronald Araujo Responds To Ilkay Gundogan Criticism

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FC Barcelona defender Ronald Araujo addressed criticism from his teammate Ilkay Gundogan at a book launch on Thursday.

The Uruguayan begged Barca fans for forgiveness after being sent off less than half an hour into a Champions League quarterfinal second leg against Paris Saint-Germain earlier in the week.

His red card proved to be the turning point in a game that Barca was winning 1-0 on the night and 4-2 on aggregate.

Led by Kylian Mbappe, their visitors mounted a 4-1 comeback against 10-men opposition to advance to the semi-finals 6-4 overall.

“Football that gave me so much joy now hits me hard. I thank all those who are unconditionally by my side, my teammates who left everything on the field, and the fans who believed in this team until the end,” Araujo wrote on social media Wednesday afternoon.

Immediately after the match, however, Gundogan criticized Araujo for his moment of madness during an interview with CBS Sports.

He didn’t mention the center back by name, but it was obvious to everyone who the German was referring to.

“I don’t even know if he was able to reach the ball,” Gundogan said about the player Araujo hacked down in Bradley Barcola.

“But give him the opportunity, let our goalkeeper maybe save us, or even concede a goal because to go down one man and get a red card so early, it just kills the game,” he added.

Hours after a report from AS revealed that Xavi cancelled a training session just four days out from a league-deciding meeting with Real Madrid at the Bernabeu, with a locker room division caused by Gundogan cited as an influential factor, Araujo briefly addressed the fall out.

“I prefer to keep to myself what I think about Gundogan’s statements. I have codes and values that have to be respected,” the 25-year-old insisted at the mentioned event in Barcelona.

Araujo said that he was “sad” about the KO from PSG “like all Barca fans”, and that his team “had it in our hands to qualify” for the semifinals.

That being said, he doesn’t feel responsible for the disappointment, though he accepted that his dismissal conditioned the outcome because his side was reduced to 10 players.

“There are a lot of other things about the game itself,” he suggested, though he felt helpless because he knows what he can contribute when he is on the field.

“I’m grateful to the Barca fans who always send me messages. When I left after the game they shouted at me ‘Uruguayan, Uruguayan’,” Araujo explained, in reference to a popular terrace chant often aimed at him.

About staying on at the club, Araujo accepted that “my future is always talked about and always will be”.

“I’m very happy at Barcelona, my family is happy. Every time I go out on the field, I show it. The desire, the energy of wanting to help … and I’m going to give it my all until the end,” he vowed.

Source: https://www.forbes.com/sites/tomsanderson/2024/04/18/fc-barcelona-star-ronald-araujo-responds-to-ilkay-gundogan-criticism/?sh=5107f29bb6f9

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