After 5 years of endless but fruitless searches, Barcelona has finally managed to sign a centre-back, Jérémy Mathieu. Valencia’s 30-year-old Frenchman will dress in blaugrana after Barça agreed to pay the whole of his 20 million euro release clause. He will sign a four-year contract, with an option for a further year, which includes a release clause set at 50 million euros.
The first team continues training with another week of double sessions. The players who began training with Luis Enrique last week will continue training morning and evening on Monday, Tuesday, Thursday and Friday. Only morning sessions will be held on Wednesday and Saturday, and the team will have next Sunday off.
Some of the international players, namely those whose teams were knocked out of the World Cup early, will return this week. Xavi Hernández, Andrés Iniesta, Gerard Piqué, Sergio Busquets, Jordi Alba and Pedro Rodriguez (Spain), Ivan Rakitić (Croatia) and Alex Song (Cameroon) will begin training on Thursday.
FC Barcelona’s new coach Luis Enrique Martínez (44), started his spell with a victory over Recreativo de Huelva in a friendly match that ended 1-0 for the Catalans thanks to a goal from Joan Àngel Román. The coach was happy with the team’s display and especially the youngsters. “All of Barça B and the first team have been fine, have taken the game seriously, with dedication and have had opportunities. However, one can not draw conclusions too early,” he said during the post press conference. Read more from Enrique after the jump.
The summer of 2014 is proving to be no different to other summers: It is yet another summer of exits from La Masia, with many of Barça’s most promising youngsters lacking the patience required in order to make it to the Camp Nou, instead opting to move to foreign clubs that offer more attractive economic terms. The latest exit is a huge blow to the league winning Juvenil B side. Read more after the jump…
UEFA has published its shortlist of the ten players nominated for the UEFA Best Player award, and FC Barcelona’s newly signed Luis Suárez along with Lionel Messi have been included in that list. The top ten will undergo a round of voting and UEFA will announce their three player shortlist on August 14th 2014. With last year’s winner Franck Ribéry missing out, check out UEFA’s top ten list right after the jump.
Forbes Magazine has announced their top 50 most valuable sports team in 2014, with FC Barcelona coming in second on that long list of clubs with an estimated value of $3.2 billion. This comes after the board’s stadium expansion plans that were announced back in April 2014. The first on that list are Real Madrid, who are valued at $3.44 billion; with Manchester United coming in third with a $2.81 billion valuation in 2014.
The mass exodus of Barcelona youngsters to the Premier League is not a new phenomenon. It has been going on for years, and it one of the key issues for every Barcelona board. However, as long as regulations don’t change, Barça are essentially bound to lose. Chelsea has lured yet another pearl emerging out of La Masia by offering attractive financial terms FC Barcelona are lawfully unable to. Read more after jump…
THE COACH PRESENTED HIS NEW BARÇA WITH PASSION
Luis Enrique wants an unpredictable team, that is exciting, attractive and that has fidelity to the club’s essence
MESSI: “He remains the best in the world”
TRIDENT: “Messi, Neymar and Suárez? I’m delighted.”
THE NEW SIGNINGS: “It’s fantastic that they come with hunger for titles”
LUIS SUÁREZ: “We accept that human beings have their imperfections”
Click for more
Cristian Tello barely arrived and had time to put on his new kit before playing and scoring for his new club, FC Porto. The club held their first pre-season friendly on Wednesday against Dutch side, Venlo. Tello was subbed on in minute 70 and scored a goal in minute 80. The Dragons ended up beating Venlo 6-2.
Luis Enrique’s Barça is a reality, and the ex-Blaugrana captain will now aim to guide the team back to winning ways with the help of six trusted colleagues, who make up his technical team. Unlike last season, when the remains of Tito Vilanova’s team had to mix with Tata Martino’s own staff, this year’s coaching staff has members with clearly defined roles and responsibilities. Read more after the jump…
FC Barcelona Juvenil A captain Roger Riera has signed for English Championship club Nottingham Forest. The 19-year-old centre-back led the immensely talented Juvenil A side to triumph in the inaugural UEFA Youth League, but the club elected not to renew his contract or offer him a place on the B team squad.
Riera leaves Barcelona after spending 9 years at La Masia, where he played at all youth levels. The 19-year-old leaves the club having the unique honour of being the most decorated captain in the history of La Masia, having managed to captain all sides he has played for and win trophies with them.
The totalBarça team wishes Roger the best of luck with his new club.
In some worrying news just announced through FC Barcelona’s channels, an irregular heartbeat was found during medical testing in Adriano Correia. That is all the information thus far, besides him being ruled out of action for a seemingly arbitrary number of four to six weeks.
Just the mention of this condition should ring alarm bells and the club must act as cautiously as necessary. Players diagnosed with heart conditions have returned to action, including Antonio Cassano and Nwankwo Kanu, but it can as easily go the way of say Rubén de la Red or worse.
We wish Adriano all the best and hopefully this will be nothing more than a scare. The highest degree of care must be taken in these situations as the football world knows all too well what can happen with heart issues.
UEFA is celebrating its 60th birthday. On this occasion, the European federation has published a compilation of the 60 best goals ever scored in continental competitions. Two players currently on FC Barcelona’s books are featured, while the list also features two former players. Barça is featured on UEFA’s list on a further five occasions albeit on the conceding side. Read more after the jump.