Women’s Champions League: Barcelona’s Aitana Bonmatí Chases Perfection

Almost everything Bonmatí does is geared toward a process of endless improvement, of smoothing out flaws and making sure nothing has gone unconsidered. She reads, and she reads widely: Her home, she said, is full of books on nutrition, on performance, on psychology. (Even her downtime is not really downtime: The likes of Primo Levi and Viktor Frankl occupy the light reading slot.)

“The more things that I know, the more I can apply what I know,” she said. “The smarter I am about those subjects, the better it is for my performance.”

Then there is her kinesthetic learning: Away from Barcelona’s orbit, but with the club’s blessing, she employs her own fitness coach, nutritionist and psychologist. She questions them, too. “I want to know what I have to improve, and how to do it,” she said.

It is not exactly a surprise, then, that Bonmatí is hardly satisfied by Barcelona’s achievement in reaching the Champions League final yet again. It is her, and her club’s, third in a row, and their fourth overall. This stage is so familiar that Barcelona will go in as the heavy favorite to beat Wolfsburg on Saturday.

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