Mascherano: “We still haven’t seen the best of Messi”

Mascherano: “We still haven’t seen the best of Messi”

Fresh off signing a contract extension, Javier Mascherano sat down for a revealing interview in which he discussed the pain of the World Cup final, Luis Enrique’s coaching style, his Argentine teammate Leo Messi, and that black cat at the Elche CF game. Read what he said after the jump.

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Alves: “Who disrespected me? A bit of everyone.”

Alves: “Who disrespected me? A bit of everyone.”

Dani Alves had the media salivating with the sheer amount of sound bites but hopefully also left them feeling twinges of shame during his no holds barred press conference yesterday afternoon. The Barça man spoke on a wide range of subjects, particularly the way he believes he is perceived and treated by fans, the club and the media. He also confirmed, though its been blatantly obvious for some time, that he is staying at the club and in fact has a contract until 2016, not 2015. All the very juicy stuff after the jump.

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Breaking: FIFA reject FC Barcelona appeal

Breaking: FIFA reject FC Barcelona appeal

In an unsurprising announcement (seeing as FIFA imposed the ban themselves), FIFA have rejected FC Barcelona’s appeal concerning the violation of regulations meant to protect children under the age of 18.

In response, Barça have communicated they are to appeal the decision with the Court of Arbitration for Sport (CAS). The official club communique is below:

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Zubizarreta: “Suárez was the first name on our list”

Zubizarreta: “Suárez was the first name on our list”

Club record signing Luis Suárez, Director of Sport Andoni Zubizarreta and vice-president Jordi Mestre were all in attendance this afternoon for one of these new blockbuster type press conferences. Zubizarreta confirmed what surfaced some time ago in the English press that Suárez was the club’s priority target and contacts were made well before the World Cup. “He was the first name on our list when meeting with Luis Enrique. We’ve followed him the past two seasons and he’s one of the world’s best. He’s a forward who can play outside that position and drop back, as well as push to either wing. He’s a goal scorer and able to combine, competitive, and within our team structure gives us options in attack.” Zubi also pointed out the benefit of the striker spending time in the Netherlands during his early years in Europe. “He was formed in Dutch football, a type of football we know well, and later in Liverpool, which is a great team accustomed to success and pressure.” It was stressed that Suárez “wanted to be a Barça player and that desire is important.” Finally, he revealed that the club has been playing around with ideas of what to do during the Uruguayan’s remaining ban time. “That he may go to Uruguay to play some friendlies is something we’ve considered and it’s an option we like.” More after the jump on Dani Alves, Alex Song, the FIFA meeting that happened earlier today and more.

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Full CAS press release and FIFPro rebuttal

Full CAS press release and FIFPro rebuttal

After the jump those interested in the specifics of the Court of Arbitration of Sport’s (CAS) Luis Suárez ruling can read the official press release. Football’s players union, which is of late actively trying to gain weight in the game, released their own press release expressing disappointment based on what they deem disproportionate ruling.

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Denis Suárez: “When Barça came calling, City offered me a renewal”

Denis Suárez: “When Barça came calling, City offered me a renewal”

Denis Suárez was one of the stand-out performers in the Barcelona B side that finished third last season in the Liga Adelante. This season, the Galicia-born midfielder finds himself at Sevilla, where he will play on loan for two years. In an interview with ‘El País’, Suárez revealed he preferred to sign for Barcelona rather than staying at Manchester City, despite of the fact that coach Manuel Pellegrini had told him that he would count on him. After the jump you will find Denis’ most important quotes…

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Eusebio: “This generation has a special talent”

Eusebio: “This generation has a special talent”

Barcelona B coach Eusebio Sacristán is not the coach who will always be the media’s favourite. The former Dream Team midfielder has come under fire from the press in numerous occasions during his tenure at the helm of Barça B, and has always managed to respond with more hard work and impressive results. The coach sat down with Catalan daily Sport during the team’s stay at the resort of Torremirona for a training camp, in order to share his views on the present and future of the Barcelona B team. Read the full translation of the interview after the jump…

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Del Bosque pays tribute to Xavi

Del Bosque pays tribute to Xavi

In honor of his retirement from the national team, Spain coach Vicente del Bosque wrote an homagé to Xavi Hernández for the Spanish newspaper El País. Read what he wrote after the jump.

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Ruiz: “I invented the Barça method”

Ruiz: “I invented the Barça method”

The name Laureano Ruiz doesn’t get the instant recognition it should. Johan Cruyff, Pep Guardiola, even Rinus Michels register, but it can be argued the Ruiz got the primordial FC Barcelona/La Masia/tiki-taka ball rolling. Readers can get familiar with Ruiz in this previously published totalBarça piece. After the jump is an exclusive translation of a recent interview, the last carried out by Olé’s Jorge ‘Topo’ López (who passed away in an automobile accident during this summer’s World Cup) with the legendary Ruiz himself.

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Ter Stegen: “My idol is Oliver Kahn”

Ter Stegen: “My idol is Oliver Kahn”

The first of Barca’s many signings this summer, Marc-André ter Stegen is the club’s goalkeeper of the future. But what else do we know about him? The young German sat down with Mundo Deportivo this week to discuss the expectations of Luis Enrique, competing for the starting spot and the joy of the German World Cup victory, to the chagrin of his teammates. Read more after the jump.

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Figo speaks on El Clásico Legends match

Figo speaks on El Clásico Legends match

Former Barcelona and Real Madrid players will be taking part in a Clásico Legends Match on September 11th at Marlins Park in Miami.

In an interview with the Miami Herald magazine, Luis Figo spoke about the intentions behind the game. “We are a group of friends who at one time were rivals and we want to give the local fans some joy. We know the love that exists for these two clubs in Miami and hope everyone leaves happy.”

You would be hard pressed to find a better group of legends to bring together. It should be quite an entertaining affair. Let’s just hope the rivalry doesn’t get too intense. Continue reading »

Rosell: “I didn’t read the small print”

Rosell: “I didn’t read the small print”

Disgraced former FC Barcelona president Sandro Rosell gave his testimony in the Neymar proceedings on July 22 and it must be said he did nothing to redeem himself. For the most part it appears his declarations added next to nothing to the case. Rosell continued to maintain that the transfer fee for Neymar was 57 million euros and explained the difference to the total 86 million of the entire “operation” in exactly the same manner the club did in January (10 million – pre-contract, 2.5 million – agent commissions, 4 million – publicity payments, 2.5 million – charitable amounts, 7.9 million – options on three Santos players and 2 million – legal costs for Neymar’s father’s company). The baffling part comes after the jump.

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José Aurelio Suárez: “Messi is a very normal guy”

José Aurelio Suárez: “Messi is a very normal guy”

Barcelona B’s new goalkeeper José Aurelio Suárez gave a really interesting interview to the El Comercio daily, based in his native Gijón. The 18-year-old spoke about Juvenil A’s record-breaking season last year, his ambitions for the season to come, Luis Enrique, the experience of training with the seniors, Lionel Messi, and of course about some of his immensely talented teammates at the Juvenil A. Read on to have a look at the most interesting excerpts of the interview…

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Welcome back, Leo!

Welcome back, Leo!

Everyone’s favorite “Atomic Flea” is back in Barcelona! After spending a week decompressing from the intensity of the World Cup in Brazil, Leo Messi flew back from Argentina on Tuesday, though he does not need to report to the team until the first week of August.

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Marc Bartra: “I expect to consolidate myself and have continuity”

Marc Bartra: “I expect to consolidate myself and have continuity”

After Tuesday’s morning training session, Barcelona centre-back Marc Bartra was the player to face the media for the standard press conference. Read the full translation of what the 23-year-old said after the jump…

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Neymar: “We must admit that Brazil lags behind Germany and Spain”

Neymar: “We must admit that Brazil lags behind Germany and Spain”

In his first interview since the World Cup, Neymar Jr. spoke about the state of Brazilian soccer and gave an update on the injury he suffered against Colombia. Will he recover in time for the start of the season? Read some highlights from the full interview with Globo Magazine after the break.

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Video of the day: Ma-Ma-Ma-Mascherano

Argentina continues its love affair with Javier Mascherano. Argentinean musicians Carlos Seoane and Kiki Troia have remade the 1979 hit My Sharona to honor “El Jefecito.” Get ready to boogie! Translation of the hilarious lyrics after the jump.

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Your Barça World Cup Guide – Knockout Stage

Your Barça World Cup Guide – Knockout Stage

Well, we’re now half way through the 2014 edition of the FIFA World Cup 2014 in Brazil, and out of the six nations featuring Barça players (including Croatia), we are now left with three teams with two Barça boys included in each. Brazil, the competition’s hosts and favourites have topped Group A with the same amount of points as Mexico. Neymar Jr scored four goals and Dani Alves played every game. Chile secured their qualification after beating Australia and Spain; they finish second unfortunately after failing to beat Louis Van Gaal’s Dutch side, and will now face Brazil in the first round of the knockout stage. Alexis Sanchez proved to be crucial to his nation’s qualification scoring a goal and making an assist, with Barça’s newly signed Chilean captain Claudio Bravo giving a good performance between the posts. Finally, there’s Argentina who have won all three of their matches thanks to their captain Lionel Messi who also scored four goals (joint top scorer with Neymar & Müller) and carried a below par Argentina to the knockout stage, with his club teammate Javier Mascherano proving a reliable anchor in the midfield. More details after the jump.

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Breaking: Barça reach agreement for Claudio Bravo

Breaking: Barça reach agreement for Claudio Bravo

After weeks of speculations surrounding who will be competing for the number one spot with German youngster Marc-André ter Stegen, FC Barcelona has finally announced that Claudio Bravo will be their man. The Chilean goalkeeper is currently captaining his Chile side in the World Cup, and doing an excellent job at that. Bravo is rated as 9.24 on FIFA’s Castrol World Cup player rankings (3rd best goalkeeper). After beating Australia and ending the Spanish reign in the group stage, Chile are now going to have to face Brazil in the following round.

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El Pivote: Summer Holiday Report Cards (Part 2)

El Pivote: Summer Holiday Report Cards (Part 2)

El Pivote (The Pivot) is a totalBarça column by Anoop Jethwa, a fully licensed coach in UK, about the trials and tribulations of FC Barcelona. From the positives to the negatives, this piece will dive deep into the living fabric that is blaugrana.

The dust has settled on the season. Now that we have the last few games of the season out of our minds, a quick reflection on the players’ performances over the course of the entire 2013/14 season is a good starting point for focusing on what we need from the players for the new season.

We had the Christmas report cards (part one and part two) for the players in January, and I will be using the same grading scheme again. In brackets will be what the player received in the winter break. (A quick reminder — here’s the simple grading scheme: A = exceptional, B = good, ticking along nicely, C = progress required next term to get back on track, D = struggling.)

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Breaking: Agreement with Sevilla FC for Ivan Rakitić

Breaking: Agreement with Sevilla FC for Ivan Rakitić

FC Barcelona and Sevilla FC have finally reached an agreement over the transfer of Ivan Rakitić to FC Barcelona. The 26-year old signed a five-year contract while Barça B’s star midfielder, Denis Suárez, will join the Andalusian club for the next two years on loan. Rakitić led Sevilla to European glory this season after defeating SL Benfica in the Europa League final and is also currently playing with Croatia in the 2014 FIFA World Cup. He featured in 29 league games with Sevilla this season in which he scored 12 goals and assisted 10.

Say hello to our newest midfielder!

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The totalBarça Project: UNICEF Contribution #8

The totalBarça Project: UNICEF Contribution #8

totalBarça is pleased to announce that it has contributed its eigth donation to UNICEF in the amount of $500 via The totalBarca Project.  This brings our tally to $4,000 in a span of just 21 months!

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El Pivote: Summer Holiday Report Cards (Part 1)

El Pivote: Summer Holiday Report Cards (Part 1)

El Pivote (The Pivot) is a totalBarça column by Anoop Jethwa, a fully licensed coach in UK, about the trials and tribulations of FC Barcelona. From the positives to the negatives, this piece will dive deep into the living fabric that is blaugrana.

The dust has settled on the season. Now that we have the last few games of the season out of our minds, a quick reflection on the players’ performances over the course of the entire 2013/14 season is a good starting point for focusing on what we need from the players for the new season.

We had the Christmas report cards (part one and part two) for the players in January, and I will be using the same grading scheme again. In brackets will be what the player received in the winter break. (A quick reminder — here’s the simple grading scheme: A = exceptional, B = good, ticking along nicely, C = progress required next term to get back on track, D = struggling.)

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Barça World Cup Fact File

Barça World Cup Fact File

An infographic from FC Barcelona covering a history of Barça at the FIFA World Cup.

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Your Barça World Cup Guide – Group Stage

Your Barça World Cup Guide – Group Stage

The moment we’ve all been waiting for has finally come, the FIFA World Cup 2014 in Brazil begins this Thursday 12th of June with the Barça boys spread out over five national teams: Spain, Brazil, Argentina, Chile and Cameroon. Nine players from the Catalan club lifted the trophy in the last World Cup in South Africa with our golden boy Andres Iniesta scoring the winner in the final. Will we see others in the Blaugrana squad achieve the same feat? Will the same players hold onto the crown? Or will another team get their hands on the trophy? Maybe it’ll be your nation, who knows? Tell us below who do you think will win and check out the Group Stage dates for our beloved players right after the jump!

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The Tactics Board-Part 2: Tata Martino

The Tactics Board-Part 2: Tata Martino

Things have come to such a point that a whole season depends on a single match. On Saturday, Barcelona and Atlético Madrid will contest one final showdown that will determine the La Liga champion. Both teams have fantastic players, but games of such magnitude cannot be won if the coach does not beat his counterpart for smartness in management. Tata Martino and Diego Simeone have a lot to think about going into the match. In this the final part of the mini-series ‘The Tactics Board,’ totalbarca will try to get into the shoes of Gerardo ‘Tata’ Martino. Read more after the jump…

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Coach Culé: The Ultimate Prediction Game

Coach Culé: The Ultimate Prediction Game

totalBarça presents Coach Culé: The Ultimate Prediction Game. Brought to you by Footynews! This is your chance to prove not only your knowledge about the game of football, but also your Blaugrana insight by cracking the code of Barça’s coaching. It’s time for you to… Predict FC Barcelona’s Starting Lineup For upcoming match: FC Barcelona vs Atletico Madrid More game and prize details after the jump. Continue reading »

The Tactics Board-Part 1: Diego Simeone

The Tactics Board-Part 1: Diego Simeone

Things have come to such a point that a whole season depends on a single match. On Saturday, Barcelona and Atlético Madrid will contest one final showdown that will determine the La Liga champion. Both teams have fantastic players, but games of such magnitude cannot be won if the coach does not beat his counterpart for smartness in management. Tata Martino and Diego Simeone have a lot to think about going into the match. With our new mini-series ‘The Tactics Board,’ totalbarca will try to get into the shoes of the two tacticians, starting with the visiting coach, Diego Pablo ‘El Cholo’ Simeone. Read more after the jump…

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Puyol: “I lived the dream of so many”

Puyol: “I lived the dream of so many”

All good things, even the best of them, must come to an end. Today Carles Puyol at the age of 36 bid an official farewell to FC Barcelona. At today’s special organized event at the Auditori 1899 in the Camp Nou, a great deal of people were in attendance to honour one of the club’s most iconic figures. His mother, brother, best friends and partner were present, as well as many former teammates, managers and club directors. Puyol gave a heartfelt good bye speech which is here after the jump.

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Valdés bids farewell

Valdés bids farewell

The time has come for us to bid farewell to our Catalan wall, Víctor Valdés. The goalkeeper said goodbye to his teammates a few days ago, and announced that he is preparing for his trip to Germany to continue his recovery. Some questioned his quality as a goalkeeper, some believe he’s the best goalkeeper to ever play for FC Barcelona, but one thing is for sure: Valdés ended his Barça career on a high note. The Spaniard was surely one of the team’s best players this season, save after save to keep the Catalans in the title race and the team is still competing until this very minute as a result of his incredible displays, but we have reached the finish line. Here is Víctor Valdés’ open letter to the fans:

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