FC Barcelona’s first team was back at the Ciutat Esportiva Joan Gamper this Saturday morning. Lionel Messi and Sergio Busquets were both able to train normally with the group. Defender Abidal was also able to continue working at the same pace as his teammates, as he had during Friday’s training session.
Bad news coming from FC Barcelona’s official website. Goalkeeper Víctor Valdés (31) is injured for tomorrow’s game against Real Betis.
Valdés reportedly has a foot injury, the same one which kept him from playing the Catalunya-Nigeria friendly in January. He has been officially ruled out of the game against Betis at Camp Nou so we will probably see José Manuel Pinto (37) between the sticks tomorrow.
Barça think about Pepe as Valdés’ substitute while they look for a young and skilled goalkeeper
He would be the ideal goalkeeper for the transition: he knows the philosophy, is skilled, cheap and wants to come back
Madrid put pressure. Barça are waiting for a reply from Neymar as soon as possible
Mou, inflammatory. The coach showed his pride for having achieved the record Liga, attacked Casillas and said that Barça was the best team of the world
Poisoned “will” by Madrid’s coach
“I only regret not having signed Diego López on my first year here”
“In 21 years, there have been 18 coaches and only 5 Champions semifinals; Mourinho, that oh-so-bad coach, got 3 semifinals in 3 years
“Barça is, probably, the best team of the world of the last 20-30 years”
Madrid’s offensive to sign Neymar. Florentino, willing to pay 40 millions for compensation to Barça
Cesc wants to give it another try next season. He is sure that he is able to improve
With speculation abounding over who will stay and go this summer, another question often slips through the cracks, a problem specific to FC Barcelona: who will get promoted from Barça B? Every year, a couple of the club’s youngsters are given first team contracts and a chance to prove their worth. Last year, Cuenca, Fontàs, and Thiago joined the team. This year it was Dos Santos, Tello, Bartra, and Montoya. Next year, likely candidates for promotion are center-back Marc Muniesa, whose season was disrupted by a severe muscle tear this fall, midfielders Sergi Roberto and Rafinha Alcântara, and winger Gerard Deulofeu, crown prince of La Masia. Read on after the break to find out what challenges these youngsters might face in their development.
FC Barcelona’s often sidelined defender Adriano Correia addressed the press today and stressed the important of securing the Liga title as soon as possible. Barcelona’s dramatic exit from the Champions League has overshadowed the fact that the squad is on the verge of winning what is arguably the most important title of the season. “We started today’s training session with higher spirits than yesterday and we are focused on the Betis match, an important game, a final for us and a step towards what has always been our primary objective, the Liga title,” Adriano stated.
The Catalans faced a mammoth task to overturn the four nil deficit against FC Bayern Munich at the Camp Nou. Comebacks against AC Milan and Paris Saint-Germain were somehow possible this season. But without Messi this task proved to be too much and a seven nil drubbing from the Germans over the two legs left FC Barcelona licking their wounds and scratching their heads.
Pep Guardiola held a conference this past Thursday, attended by nearly 4,000 people at the Gran Rex Theatre in Buenos Aires. Along with Guardiola, his friend and Barça’s former External Relationship Manager, Manel Estiarte, also gave a small talk on leadership and motivation.
I had the joy and pleasure of attending this conference, mostly thanks to Consultora Med, part of the organization committee that brought Pep to Argentina.
FC Barcelona returned to training this Friday to prepare for the the league match on Sunday against Real Betis at the Camp Nou (21:00). Both Lionel Messi and Víctor Valdés were absent from today’s session. The Argentine forward, who remained on the bench against Bayern Munich on Wednesday, underwent physiotherapy. Tito Vilanova explained after the match on Wednesday that “against Athletic [Messi] felt a strange sensation” and, although he was not injured, they didn’t want to force him because “in one explosive effort [his hamstring] could tear.”
Valdés spent today’s session doing specific work. Because of his absence, Tito Vilanova asked Barça B goalkeeper Oier Olazábal to train with the first team.
Former Barcelona coach Pep Guardiola, addressing an audience in Buenos Aires, declared that the chapter in his life as Barcelona coach was definitively closed. When asked about the possibility of an eventual return to the club, he replied: “That is a closed chapter. It would take a lot for me to go back to Barcelona … I felt a great sense of calm when I left there.” Guardiola went on to note that he had “great pride for the time I spent at the club. But life goes on and you have to seek other challenges.”
Image: BERNA BOSCO
FC Barcelona will take to the football pitch once again on Sunday, in a match against Real Betis that could decide La Liga. You have to look all the way back to May 3, 1998 to find the last time that Betis beat Barcelona in the Camp Nou. Hello Liga title?
Image: TONI ALBIR [EFE]
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.
12, 370 – the number of meters Cesc Fàbregas ran against Bayern Munich at the Camp Nou according to official UEFA statistics. That number makes Cesc the most industrious player on the pitch that evening, besting second place Dani Alves by over one kilometer. Can’t fault him for effort or dedication.
Messi did not play and Barça was humiliated again
Barça 0 – 3 Bayern
There was no football nor attitude. The final 7 – 0 shows the tactical and physical superiority of Bayern
Leo was benched due to his injuries and had to watch the match from there
Ancelotti or Heynckes, Mou’s substitutes
May 1, 2013
April 30, 2013