Ernesto Valverde stated with a calm and collected manner that the correct name for the football club is Espanyol de Barcelona. This is the name that they've always been known, with the main reason being that the club was founded in the city of Barcelona, apart from the fact that the bulk of their supporters in the past and present hail from the Catalan city. Valverde came to the rescue after Piqué called Barça's city rivals 'Espanyol de Cornellà'. That comment provoked outrage last week and the ideal thing would have been to leave it there as Piqué was well aware of the offense the comment would have generated with the intention clearly having been to belittle the side in blue and white stripes.
From the outset we can see the source of his ire as his wife is constantly insulted when both sides meet at the RCDE Stadium by the home support. That may have plenty to do with his comment but by no means is is a justification for his words. Days passed, his coach appeared to have closed the matter and precisely on the day of his contract renewal he comes out and reaffirms his original comment. Pique was well aware of the impact the original comment had among Espanyol and the club's fans and this precisely was his reasoning to reiterate the comment from last week after the Copa del Rey clash.
There is something about Piqué the person that taints the image of Piqué the player. This need to distance him from prudence, that air of being an exhibitionist, that unpleasant side that causes him to spit at Pedro Cortés. Maybe this is something to do with his privileged upbringing which was epitomised when he found it fit to talk down to a local policemen who challenged him on a parking issue. The 30-year-old player is someone who likes to stir things up and then wallows in the subsequent controversy that has been created. Granted, there have been times when the player has shown his conciliatory side but over the past there have been far more occasions of provocation rather than conciliation, which is a shame.