Johan Cruyff defends Leo Messi

Johan Cruyff defends Leo Messi

Barça’s legendary former player and coach has come out in defense of Lionel Messi, following criticism that has labelled the Argentine ”disinterested.” The Dutchman labelled that criticism as ‘nonsense’ and said that Barça has gone for years without a coherent plan and ‘bad influences from outside the dressing room’ in an interview with Croatian daily Jutarnji List. Make the jump for a few choice excerpts.

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Messi cam

Messi cam

Tonight the Copa del Rey final broadcasters RTVE will have one of their 24 cameras solely focused on Lionel Messi for the entire match. There will be another lens on Gareth Bale, and the footage will eventually be used to produce a special program on the two players. However, while one enjoy the match on the TV, tonight is will be possible to follow every step Messi takes live at www.rtve.es.

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Iniesta: “Nobody doubts Messi”

Iniesta: “Nobody doubts Messi”

World Cup winner Andrés Iniesta spoke in Tuesday’s pre-match press conference ahead of Wednesday’s Copa del Rey final against eternal rivals Real Madrid. A horror week in the Catalan club caused an earlier than usual UEFA Champions League exit at the hands of Atlético Madrid, followed by a disappointing away loss against Granada CF which lost Barça’s grip on the league title chase.

But now the team is solely focused on bouncing back by beating Real Madrid for the third time this season in the very same stadium where they lost in 2011. Iniesta reassured the fans that “The team is able to play well and win.” He also added, “It would be a huge joy for our supporters. We only have thoughts of winning the trophy.” More from Don Andrés after the jump.

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Quote of the day: Keita faster than Messi?

Quote of the day: Keita faster than Messi?

“Now I can tell Messi that he doesn’t own ALL the records”

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Messi and the Cornellà Curse

Messi and the Cornellà Curse

So what do we know about Lionel Messi so far? All-time goalscorer for Barça, four Ballon d’Ors , three Champions Leagues… The list goes on and on. Messi has a knack for overwriting record books and placing his name wherever he can. He torments opposition players with his godly skills and killer finishing. Yet, one fact still remains strange to the stats of the Argentinean: Lionel Messi has never scored in Espanyol’s new stadium Cornellà since it opened in 2009. With 236 goals in the league for the little man, it seems strange that Messi has yet to celebrate in the Espanyol stadium despite scoring goals against Espanyol in Camp Nou and in Montjuïc. It almost seems like the stadium which will host Saturday’s Derbi Barceloní has a curse over the 26-year old.

Will he break it today?

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Messi meets with Japanese tsunami survivors

Messi meets with Japanese tsunami survivors

The FC Barcelona Foundation along with the Leo Messi Foundation played host this week to thirty young people from Japan who have been seriously affected by the 2011 tsunami disaster. The twenty-four boys and eleven girls are from the province of Iwate, a coastal area on the main island of Japan that was particularly devastated in the earthquake and the tsunami that followed. The combined foundations hosted several days of events for the youngsters, who play on different football teams in Japan and are big fans of Barça, the first of which was a meeting with Lionel Messi himself.

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Video of the Day: Messi’s 21 El Clásico goals

Lionel Messi has surpassed Alfredo Di Stefano’s record of becoming El Clásico’s all-time top goalscorer last Sunday with 21 goals. Watch this video and relive all of the Argentine’s 21 goals. Which one is your favourite?

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Messi destroys El Clásico recordbooks!

Messi destroys El Clásico recordbooks!

Nail-biting, exciting, frightening and jaw-dropping. This is how every culé would describe this historically intense match. But one man starred in it, one man reassured the world that he still is, and always will be the best. That man was Lionel Messi. The four-time Ballon d’Or winner didn’t only score a hat-trick that night, but he also broke a hat-trick of records. Yes, three!

Lionel Messi first broke Alfredo Di Stefano’s long-standing record and became El Clásico’s all-time goalscorer with 21 goals so far. Not only that, with Iniesta’s opener Messi also became El Clásico’s all time assist leader with 12. And finally, Messi became the first player ever to score a hat-trick in El Clásico both home and away.

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Ramos: “I fear Iniesta more than Messi”

Ramos: “I fear Iniesta more than Messi”

In an interview to El Partido de las 12, Real Madrid’s defender, Sergio Ramos, was asked about which FC Barcelona player would he prefer not to face in the upcoming El Clásico, and his answer was: “Iniesta.”  Barça recently impressed in an incredible win against CA Osasuna, where Lionel Messi scored a special hat-trick to become the club’s all-time top goalscorer, but Ramos went on to say, “Barça is not just Messi, although you must be especially careful with him.” Real Madrid are unbeaten in their last 31 games, and the fans hope to see their run come to an end in what might prove to be a vital game.

Visca el Barça!

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Messi: “I was formed with the values of La Masia”

Messi: “I was formed with the values of La Masia”

On the tenth anniversary of the BarçaTV show, Promeses, Lionel Messi sat down for an interview and talked about growing up blaugrana.  Leo made very clear what FC Barcelona has meant in his life. “Barça has given me everything. I was formed with the values of La Masia. I am what I am because of the values of the cantera.”

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Messi named football’s top earner by France Football

Messi named football’s top earner by France Football

In a report published by famous football magazine France Football, Lionel Messi was named top earner amongst footballers with €41m per year (salary plus additional income), which narrowly beats Cristiano Ronaldo’s €39.5m per year. Meanwhile, new signing Neymar Jr came in third below the Ballon d’Or winners with €29m per year. See the top 11 earners after the jump.

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#messi370

#messi370

In anticipation of Leo Messi breaking Paulino Alcántara long held FC Barcelona goal record, Adidas prepared a special #messi370 collection. The pair are the first to correlate with Barça’s colors, so hopefully Messi is going to introduce everyone to his new best friends; right foot blau and left foot grana.

What will be the final number Adidas will eventually etch on the great man’s scoring weapons?

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Messi: “I am picking up rhythm and confidence”

Messi: “I am picking up rhythm and confidence”

After Sunday’s 7-0 exhibition against Osasuna, Lionel Messi who became FC Barcelona’s all time highest goalscorer (in official competitions & friendlies) with his 25th hat-trick, spoke to Catalan station TV3 right after the game. “I had heard everywhere that I was closing in on [Alcántara],” the Argentine said. “When you see you are close you want to do it, for what it means in the history of a club this big. A lot of years have passed since it was reached. Many more years will pass before it is overcome again.” More from FC Barcelona’s top goalscorer of all time.

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Messi: FC Barcelona’s all-time highest goalscorer!

Messi: FC Barcelona’s all-time highest goalscorer!

Lionel Messi has surpassed Paulino Alcántara to become FC Barcelona’s all-time goalscorer in both official competitions and in friendlies. At the tender age of 26, the Argentine has broken Paulino’s record of 369 goals for the Catalan club, a record that stood for 87 years since 1927. A hat-trick against Osasuna puts Messi at 371 goals since his debut 10 glorious years ago in 2004.

All hail the king!

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Messi: His next record targets

Messi: His next record targets

Lionel Messi: 26 years old, footballer, captain of the Argentinian national team and a living legend. In his free time he enjoys making fantastic solo runs with ball, beating and humiliating world class players and teams, scoring goals in a unique style, and winning all possible titles over and over again. For the past few years though, Messi has started a new hobby which includes beating every record in the history books until ultimately casting a shadow over them all and turning the books into his own biography. Read on for Messi’s incredible sights for the (very) near future.

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Messi downplays vomiting

Messi downplays vomiting

Wednesday’s internationals friendly brought joy to many culés with Neymar’s superb hat-trick against South Africa, while it brought fear to the same people after watching Lionel Messi vomiting in the friendly against Romania. This wasn’t the first time we’ve seen an incident like this. Last year, the Argentine captain vomited in a friendly match against Bolivia. This was, however, justified with the match being played almost 13,000 feet above sea level. But that wasn’t the case on Wednesday, and like some who say that last year’s incident played a role in Messi’s injury and lack of fitness, the same fears are resurfacing as Barça approaches its most important part of the season. But the four-time Ballon d’Or winner downplayed the incident to calm his fans all over the world. “It happens to me all the time. It has happened various times with the club too. It is not anything that has not happened before.”

We all hope it’s nothing serious, Leo!

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Messi reaches 200 league wins with Barça

Messi reaches 200 league wins with Barça

Lionel Messi has reached yet another incredible feat in Barça’s match against UD Almería. The Argentine has now won 200 league matches with Barça in 265 appearances (230 goals). The feat has been achieved against one of Messi’s favourite victims in the league, Almería. The Andalusians have conceded 10 goals from Messi, which makes him the highest scoring player against them. Way to go, Leo!

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Messi wins Aldo Rovira for the third time

Lionel Messi has been selected as the Aldo Rovira’s winner for the 2012-13 season. The winner is selected by a jury composed of various directors and heads of Catalan media on an annual basis. Messi previously won the award on two occasions (2009-10 and 2010-11), while the winner of last year’s award was ex-Barça man, Éric Abidal.

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Lionel Messi in FIFA’s top 10 footballers in history

Lionel Messi in FIFA’s top 10 footballers in history

FIFA Weekly recently published a ranking of the top 10 football players in the history of the sport. Out of the ten athletes, Lionel Messi is the only active player on the list. Check out the top ten ranking after the jump.

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Messi’s latest weapons

Messi’s latest weapons

Adidas revealed their latest “Team Messi” F50s recently, which Leo himself will debut Tuesday night in Manchester. They are the most color rich version of the model, which extends to the studs, and also has Messi’s logo on the heel and his name on the tongue.

You can find a pair of these for yourselves from our friends at JD Sports.

What do we think?

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February 16, 2014

Video of the day: This is what it is like to be Messi

Messi surpasses Di Stéfano


February 15, 2014

Piqué: “If Messi doesn’t kill you Neymar will”

Blatter: Neither Messi nor Cristiano


February 13, 2014

Messi equals Zarra’s historic record

Ex-Real Madrid man Valdano working on Messi film


February 11, 2014

Quote of the Day: Lionel Messi reunites with an old friend


February 10, 2014

Martino: “Hurting Messi’s pride has consequences”

Quote of the Day: Ray Hudson on Messi’s brilliance


February 9, 2014

Martino: “Give Messi a break”

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