After Barcelona’s 4-0 Tuesday victory over Getafe, head coach Pep Guardiola took a moment to remind us of the day’s significance for Eric Abidal:
We dedicate the victory to Eric Abidal and his cousin, Gerard.
It’s a very special day for us because we knew today was the day he was having his liver transplant.
Abidal, whose cousin donated the transplanted liver, was honored during Tuesday’s match, the crowd at the Nou Camp paying tribute to the France international at the 22-minute mark (Abidal wears shirt number 22).
In March 2011, Abidal had a tumor removed from his liver, missing nearly two months of action toward the end of Barcelona’s season. One year later, it was determined Abidal required a transplant.
Abidal has not played since France’s visit to Germany on Feb. 29. Even if today’s operation is successful, it will be “very difficult” for him to resume a playing career, according to the head of Spain’s organ transplant service.
Video of Pep Guardiola’s press conference: