Barca's Edmilson apologises for 'Black Sheep' outburst

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Madrid, Nov 23: Barcelona's Edmilson has apologised for his criticisms of the side at a team meeting held before training, team mate Andres Iniesta has said.

The versatile Brazilian midfielder questioned the commitment of some of his colleagues in a television interview earlier in the week, saying like every family Barca had 'Black Sheep'.

''Edmilson asked to speak to us and he has apologised. He spoke to us all and recognised that what he did was wrong,'' the Spain midfielder told a news conference yesterday.

''He said he never meant to harm the group and that he was only trying to give a general opinion. It wasn't the moment or the way to do it.'' Iniesta went on to say that it reminded him of the divisive episodes from last year's trophyless season such as when Cameroon striker Samuel Eto'o went public with his criticisms of coach Frank Rijkaard, and other team mates.

''Last season we spoke about everything except football and look what happened,'' Iniesta added.

''Whether it is true or not, it is something that should stay in the dressing room.'' The players met without the coaching staff and Rijkaard.

After last season's off-field problems Barca said they would take a sterner approach this term, and have issued a new code of conduct to the players.

But following a board meeting this evening, board spokesman Xavier Cambra said the club would be taking no action in the matter which had dominated media headlines throughout the day.

''The players have met, they have explained what needed explaining, and we believe they are following the correct course of action,'' he told reporters.

''We are going to leave the coaching staff to do their work because we have a lot of faith in them.'' Barca play Recreativo Huelva at home in the Primera Liga tomorrow.

UNI

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