Café con leche: Barça punished again

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The Anti-violence committee fines the club

During the Copa del Rey final at the Camp Nou, the fans of both FC Barcelona and Athletic Club whistled the Spanish anthem as soon as it started playing. Both sets of supporters wanted to express their desire to separate from Spain and since then the Spanish government indicated that it would take action against those whistles. The fine on the Catalan club is €66,000 for “breaching the obligations required in the design and implementation of the safety measures and access controls of prohibited objects (including flares) inside the sports arena.”

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The Front: Sport (28.7.2015)

The Front: Sport (28.7.2015)

DUEL AGAINST MOU

Chelsea-Barcelona

First confrontation between Luis Enrique and the controversial Portuguese coach

Robert lays his hands on the masterpiece in Washington

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The Front: Mundo Deportivo (28.7.2015)

The Front: Mundo Deportivo (28.7.2015)

PEDRO SQUEEZES NOLITO CLOSER

The Canary Islander pressures to leave as soon as possible, but Barcelona wants him to play in the European Supercup

The Celta Vigo player, who shone under Lucho, is being considered as an alternative if the club relents

Iniesta interview: “I don’t suffer under Lucho’s system.”

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Cartoon of the Day: Sport

Cartoon of the Day: Sport

“But now I don’t only meddle with Barcelona… I have amplified my objectives.”

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Café con leche: Ambitions and role changes

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ter Stegen aims for el numero uno

The German goalkeeper cut his vacations short and returned to training early to make it for the team’s USA tour. Not many athletes do that, only those that are truly dedicated and ambitious – words that describe the 23 year old.

His ambitions however might disturb the team’s treble winning structure, as he aims to play all games. “To be in preseason is good for me. I want to play all the games, but the final decision is the coach’s,” said the German. “I returned before my holidays to prepare well for the new season. I have to train to the maximum, but I want to play everything, sure. Last season was not like this, but I’ll wait to see how things go.”

“It’s not about exchanging roles with Bravo,” he added. “Claudio was in great form last season and we will see what happens with this.” I’m guessing Luis Enrique will find himself in quite another pickle this season.

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Why Marc Bartra is the present rather than the future

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No matter what our club achieves and in what manner it is accomplished, there will always be problems, or more importantly, those that perceive the presence of problems. Marc Bartra may not be one of these problems, but he definitely should be on the minds of those who are concerned when it comes to the team selection for the coming season.

Rarely in the last five or six years (probably even longer) have we had a situation where the manager has had a defensive selection headache of the positive nature. Luis Enrique was given a free pass of sorts to rotate for the first half of the season and choose his best eleven for almost every game in the second half. This season, however, the onus is on him to repeat the same level of success while incorporating more young fringe players and B team players into the first team. Sergi Samper may be the name you think of, but the more pressing, more urgent case is that of the not-so-young-anymore Marc Bartra.

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The Front: Mundo Deportivo (27.7.2015)

The Front: Mundo Deportivo (27.7.2015)

Ter Stegen: “I want to play more.”

The German aspires to have more minutes but admits that the rotation with Bravo was the correct decision

To know which is the correct path, “I must win Lucho’s confidence.”

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The Front: Sport (27.7.2015)

The Front: Sport (27.7.2015)

Piqué wants Pedro to stay

The azulgrana centre back assures that “if he leaves now, the team will be weakened.”

Abdennour: “I would like to play in Barcelona.”

He expects that his signing will be accelerated

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Cartoon of the Day: Sport

Cartoon of the Day: Sport

Van Gaal always positive

“Pedro, Ramos, De Gea, Di María… one can say that all the ‘transfer soap operas’ are completely in my hands.”

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Preseason: United prove worthy opponents

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In their second preseason friendly, FC Barcelona were defeated three goals to one by Louis van Gaal’s resurgent Manchester United side. The overall performance was satisfying with several positive points to take into consideration, with the team showing they’re slowly regenerating match fitness and quality just in time for the upcoming Supercopa trophies. Below are the main talking points.

Unfinished Business

LVG explained before the game that his starting XI won’t change much ahead of the Premier League’s opening fixture against Tottenham Hotspur, meaning that for some players it was now or never to impress the coach. And as expected, Manchester United took the game as a chance to test themselves against the best in the world. Yet while a few Barcelona players seemed uninterested in the outcome of the game, one man shared Manchester United’s enthusiasm. Luis Suárez, the only available member of the historic attacking trident, put on an amazing display against his old rivals. The Uruguayan first hit the woodwork from a freekick that left David De Gea stranded, and minutes later beat him once again with a long shot, which also hit the upright. And when Luisito finally found the back of the net after superb buildup play from the team, the linesman was there to ruin the moment.

As always, Suárez was his highly competitive self and looked as sharp as ever. Exciting days await us.

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