Fans gathered in the Palau Sant Jordi in Barcelona experienced a unique show on Sunday when Pep Guardiola and Tito Vilanova’s teams played each other in a charity futsal match for TV3 and Catalonia Radio’s Marathon against Poverty. The 14,000 fans truly enjoyed the game put on by the Blaugrana players. Continue reading to find out the result of that extraordinary game, see pictures and enjoy highlight videos and a link to the complete game video.
The whole team gave it their all to put on a spectacular show in their last (unofficial) match of the season. The injured players also didn’t want to miss such an extraordinary event and they all watched the match from the stands, as did President Sandro Rosell and the entire technical staff of the first team. Only Messi, Mascherano, Alexis, Keita and Afellay, all called up for international duty, were missing.
The match between Guardiola and Tito Vilanova’s Barças was played to raise funds, through ticket sales and goals scored, for TV3 and Catalonia Radio’s Marathon against Poverty. The proceeds are allocated to organizations that focus on the plight of individuals that are at risk of social exclusion.
Pep Guardiola presented his lineup: Masip, Sergio Busquets, Adriano, Iniesta, and Tello – the starting five. On his bench were Dos Santos, Muniesa and Gustavo. Tito Vilanova sent out Pinto, Montoya, Piqué, Xavi and Pedro as his starting five. On Tito’s bench were Bartra, Espinosa and Rodri. Valdés and Rodri were permanent fixtures on the court, playing for the team that had the ball.
They all gave spectacular performances, and even though it was a friendly match, the goals were very important as the Club decided that for every goal scored, 300 euros would be donated to the Marathon against Poverty. The game ended in an 8-8 draw, 16 goals which means 4,800 euros went to help individuals that are dealing with extreme poverty in and around Barcelona. With the final 8-8 result, the players decided to have a penalty shootout to decide the winner. Guardiola’s team were the victors. As is traditional, after the match the players performed a sardana (traditional Catalan dance). Besides money raised through tickets and goals, FC Barcelona also donated 200,000 euros that the club received from Cadena COPE (in damages for doping accusations) to the cause.
Valdés and Piqué stole the show for sure. The keeper fulfilled the dream that many children have: to be Messi for a day. Valdés customized his jersey by adding a zero adjacent to the number one that the keeper usually dons on his back to make 10, Leo Messi’s number. In fact, Valdés did pretty well – he put Pinto to the test on more than one occasion. Gerard Piqué was the showman on the court. During halftime, he was even challenged by the Barça Alusport players (Barça’s professional futsal team), who were also present, to nail a shot through a small grid in front of the goal.
The Marathon against Poverty charity match was Barça’s last match of the season and the fans at the Palau Sant Jordi knew it. They chanted Guardiola’s name, who can now say that his time with Barça is officially over. The fans also chanted Tito Vilanova’s name, the incoming manager for next season. Éric Abidal also got a standing ovation from the fans.
“Barça vs. Barça” — Two goals in three minutes
Video from the fan perspective
You can watch the complete game at website of Catalan TV3 (click here)
Source: fcbarcelona.cat Picture credits: PEP MORATA – MD, Pere Punti – MD