Barcelona Manager Luis Enrique Hopes Neymar To Keep His Frosty

Barcelona manager Luis Enrique has backed star striker Neymar to keep his cool during Barcelona's derby trip to face Espanyol on Sunday.

The Brazil striker is back from a three-game suspension, having been sent off for two bookable offences in the loss at Malaga earlier this month.

The harshness of his punishment was in part due to the former Sao Paulo forward sarcastically applauding the fourth official as he left the field.

Three consecutive victories in his absence, including a thrilling Lionel Messi-inspired celeberation in El Clasico last weekend, have returned Barca to the top of LaLiga at Real Madrid's expense.

Luis Enrique is bolster to have Neymar back for the final stretch of the trophy race and believes he will take a bitter atmosphere at Estadi Cornella-El Prat in his stride.

"Neymar's ready to compete," Luis Enrique said at a pre-match news conference.

"I think Neymar is a specialist at dealing with these situations. If there is a player who receives the most fouls in the danger zone, that's Neymar.

"He's not been sent off very often and I think he controls his emotions very well, but there is no doubt tomorrow's game is one where we will have to control our emotions very well."

"I have no interest in talking about these things," he said. "They have nothing to do with the next game we're playing against Espanyol and that has been my policy for the last three years.”

"I'm not going to get involved in these controversy-seeking questions," he added. "I never have done and even less so now I'm a manager. It's really not my thing."

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