José Antonio Iniesta, the father of FC Barcelona midfielder Andrés Iniesta, hit back at Real Madrid coach José Mourinho’s comments on his son, pointing out that the Portuguese manager “doesn’t know respect and shame.” Earlier in the week, Iniesta junior had spoken in favor of beleaguered Real Madrid goalkeeper Iker Casillas to which Mourinho later responded that the Barcelona player should mind his own business.
“I just said that some decisions should be taken, but I was talking along general lines. On a personal level for each individual so we could take a step forward and try and be better and work more so that next season we can try to reach Bayern’s level…I have a phenomenal relationship with Tito. He was my coach when I was 15 years old. I appreciate him a lot, and have the highest respect for him as a coach.”
Cristian Tello has had another effective year in the FC Barcelona first team. The zippy 21-year-old winger has started double the games compared to last year, though Tito Vilanova has used him less off the bench than predecessor Pep Guardiola. Tello was on Barça TV Sunday evening as the guest on El Marcador. A summary of his appearance is after the jump.
FC Barcelona was well and soundly beaten by Bayern Munich over the two-legged semi-final. And while the players expressed the hurt, which was visible enough on the faces of most after the match (Gerard Piqué and Cesc Fàbregas in particular), they also tipped their caps to a worthy opponent and exited the tournament with humility and class. Much more after the jump.
“Barcelona has always been the team most important to me. It’s an example for all with hardworking and dedicated players like Xavi and Puyol, and also for the supporters. Barça is the best team in the world. I never planned on going to Madrid because I’ve been culé for many years.”
- A small extract of an interview, in which he spoke Catalan, with former FC Barcelona star Yaya Touré.
FC Barcelona midfield maestro Xavi Hernández recently sat down with uefa.com to discuss the club’s philosophy of football, the current situation of the team, and his memories from Wembley. “It’s about doing something extra, not just winning,” says Xavi. “It’s about playing well and then if you manage to win, even better. Barça always try to direct the game, they don’t wait for the opposition but go out and attack, so people identify with the club. Barça fans would never understand if the team were not controlling or dominating a match. That’s the way it has to be.” Describing FC Barcelona’s philosophy, he said that ”football is played to win, but our satisfaction has to be double, other teams win and are happy, but it’s not the same. The identity is lacking. In football the result is an impostor. You can do things really, really well but not win. There’s something greater than the result, more lasting – a legacy.”
SV Hamburger captain and Dutch international Rafael Van der Vaart (30) recently told German magazine Sport Bild that Bayern Munich “has no options” against Champions League semi-final rivals FC Barcelona.
“One player separates Bayern from Barcelona: Lionel Messi,” Van der Vaart said. The Dutch striker knows Pep Guardiola’s Barça well thanks to the two seasons he spent at Real Madrid from 2008-2010.
Ahead of the second leg match against Paris Saint-Germain in the Champions League quarter-finals, FC Barcelona defender Gerard Piqué spoke with journalist Guillem Balague in an interview that appeared today in The Telegraph. In the interview, Piqué talks about his time with Manchester United, returning to Barcelona, the changes fatherhood has made in his life, and how the team dealt with the absence of Tito Vilanova. The complete interview can be found here. Excerpts are after the jump.
Cesc Fábregas answered some questions during a radio interview with Cadena SER last Wednesday. His interview wasn’t only about football, and covered Fábregas’s opinions on the current situation in Spain, his family, political corruption, and the Pope’s recent resignation. He confessed his addiction to football, considers Wenger his second father, and expresses caution over whether Guardiola will succeed at Bayern Munich. Continue reading for a translation of the interview (original version here).
FC Barcelona defender Dani Alves (29) spoke to the press on Thursday following the game against Real Madrid. As expected, the issue of racism in football arenas took center stage and Alves shared his opinion, terming the fight against this issue a ‘lost cause’. He also answered questions on the result and conduct of players as witnessed during the Copa del Rey quarterfinal clash.
FC Barcelona fullback Jordi Alba(23), on Thursday, unveiled his new Adidas boots and in the accompanying press conference shared his opinion on Wednesday’s Clàsico, the conduct of the players and referees during and after the game and the upcoming match against his former club, Valencia CF. The left back also reiterated his belief that the league is not decided yet, giving a special mention to Atlético Madrid’s form. Excerpts from the interview are after the break.
Catalan journalist Guillem Gómez authored Francesc Calvet, El pagés que va triomfar al Barça, a book that tells the story of Calvet, a country man who took part in the mythical team of les Cinc Copes. In addition to being a part of that legendary Barça team, Calvet was also one of the first set of players who can be considered ‘La Masia players’. Gómez took time out to discuss with totalBarça his book and a little bit of blaugrana history. At the moment, the book is published only in Catalan, but a Spanish version is set to come and there is also a possibility for the book to be released in English.
FC Barcelona’s director of football took some time to answer some questions after their Copa del Rey clash with Real Madrid CF. The former “Dream Team” goalkeeper said that he felt “lucky” to have the two teams in Spain competing, adding his feelings about the match and the result. He also responded to some questions over Raphaël Varane and the frequent comparisons between the Copa del Rey and La Liga. Continue on to read the full translation of the interview conducted after the match.
Following the match against CA Osasuna, FC Barcelona forward Pedro Rodríguez (25) took time out to appear on Barça TV programme “El Marcador”. He spoke about his current form and the upcoming Copa del Rey Clásico that could be his 200th game for the club, revealing that he is feeling confident ahead of Wednesday’s clash. The player also had words of praise for his teammate Messi and the fans’ reaction to Valdés deciding not to renew his contract.
While at the FIFA Ballon d’Or Gala in Zurich earlier this month, Barcelona midfielder Xavi Hernandez (32) was interviewed by FIFA.com on Spain’s successes on the international stage and the change in Barça’s fortunes this season. Read the full interview here and enjoy some excerpts from the maestro after the break.
Before winning his fourth Ballon d’Or, FC Barcelona’s Lionel Messi sat down for an interview with FIFA.com where he discussed his year for both club and country, the changes and challenges faced by Barça, and his ‘favorite’ goal of the 91 scored in 2012. The complete interview, first published on Wednesday, January 16, 2103, can be read in full here. A few excerpts can be found below.
As a follow-up to US-based reporting program 60 Minutes and its unique coverage on FC Barcelona on Sunday, January 6, it also ran an exclusive segment on Lionel Messi on the debut of its sports contingent called 60 Minutes Sports. The feature was broadcasted on US specialty network Showtime on Wednesday, January 9.
The first profile segment on FC Barcelona by Bob Simon for 60 Minutes was played on US television network CBS on Sunday evening. Click to watch after the jump the original TV segment along with bonus segments including interviews with Xavi, Zubizarreta, and a look at how La Masia can help develop ‘soccer’ in the US.
Acclaimed North American news program 60 Minutes will air not one but two FC Barcelona-focused broadcasts in the next week. This Sunday, January 6, the main program will show a segment looking at the success of the team with a focus on La Masia. This broadcast will include an interview with Lionel Messi conducted by Bob Simon, and will also feature appearances by Sandro Rosell, director of sport Andoni Zubizarreta and players Xavi Hernández, Cesc Fàbregas and Gerard Piqué.
FC Barcelona President Sandro Rosell and Sporting Director Andoni Zubizarreta held a press conference in the Sala Paris at the Ciutat Esportiva early Wednesday evening to discuss the situation with Manager Tito Vilanova’s cancer relapse and the announcement to assign Assistant Coach Jordi Roura as interim head coach in Vilanova’s absence. The following are quotes translated by totalBarça’s Maria Inés and Roberto Curtis as reported by @OpinionCule.
In the Copa game against Deportivo Alaves, David Villa (30) scored the 300th and the 301st goal of his illustrious career and the 40th goal in the blaugrana colours. While speaking with Barça TV programme ‘El Marcador‘, Villa said “With so much money nowadays in football, it’s a source of pride that there are 11 home-grown players in a team like Barça. Getting here is really difficult. It’s an example to follow for any team in the world”. Included after the jump are more excerpts from Villa’s interview and a video.
FC Barcelona central defender and Spanish international Gerard Piqué spoke recently to El Mundo Deportivo and Sport regarding his injury, his team’s problems in defense, what it’s like to play with Lionel Messi, and the importance of La Masia in the never-ending battle with Real Madrid. He even managed to comment on the fertility of his teammates.
After the success of totalBarça’s Twitter contest for Graham Hunter’s updated book, we were contacted by another writer of another Barça book. Richard Fitzpatrick recently wrote a book we would all likely want to get our hands on. The book is called El Clásico: Barcelona vs Madrid – Football’s Greatest Rivalry.
Drooling yet? We are.
totalBarça’s very own Padraig had the opportunity to interview Richard to discuss the motivation behind the book, Irish heritage effect on football, and being a current resident of Barcelona.
“Give me joy in my heart, Henrik Larsson, give me joy in my heart, I pray, give me joy in my heart Henrik Larsson, give me Larsson ’til the end of day.. Henrik Larsson, Henrik Larsson, Henrik Larsson is the king of kings…”
The date is October 23rd, the scene is the Barcelona metro as the Celtic supporters make their way towards the Camp Nou. It is almost nine years since Henrik Larsson left Celtic but such is his impact that he will never be forgotten neither in Glasgow nor in Barcelona. Few footballers manage to have an enormous impact on the club they play for and their fans. There are even fewer who manage it in two different clubs. totalBarça received the privilege to converse with the one who did – Henrik Larsson!