Real Madrid manager Carlo Ancelotti and captain Iker Casillas weighed in with their pre-match thoughts yesterday in anticipation of tonight’s Copa del Rey final. Despite a loss in the last clásico, Ancelotti’s men are in good form, having earned a semifinal berth in the Champions League, while Casillas has not conceded a goal so far in Madrid’s Copa campaign. Both individuals are going into the final against Barcelona confident; see what they had to say about the game below.
The International Federation of Football History and Statistics (IFFHS) have announced their 2013 “World’s Best Goalkeeper” and the honor went to Bayern Munich’s Manuel Neuer. The award is based upon an aggregate of votes from IFFHS editorial staff and experts worldwide. Check out below to see where Valdés finished.
CASILLAS: “I CALLED XAVI BECAUSE WE WERE CRAPPING OURSELVES.”
Casillas: “Or to be more exact, within our club we were crapping mourselves.”
Cartoon by Caye
It’s the big one. El Clásico. The biggest fixture in Spanish football, for my money, and the largest in the sport. On Saturday, 18:00 local time, nearly 100,000 culés will pack into the Camp Nou. There will only be a few hundred madridistas. It will be the first time since 2003 that each team’s manager will experience this for the first time. For Gerardo Martino, a win would crystalize an incredible opening act to his Barça career, expanding his team’s points advantage to six. For Carlo Ancelotti, it would steady the rudder and equal Barça’s 25 points. Now we just have to see what happens.
THIS IS HOW DEL BOSQUE SELECTS HIS KEEPER FOR LA ROJA
HEADS … VALDÉS
TAILS … CASILLAS
AND IF IT LANDS ON THE EDGE … REINA
Cartoon by Caye
CASILLAS CAUGHT TALKING TO REINA ABOUT HIS FUTURE
CASILLAS: “LEAVING MADRID NOW? I DON’T SEE IF HAPPENING, DUDE.”
ANCELOTTI: “LISTEN, DUDE … I SEE IT HAPPENING.”
Cartoon by Caye
Transfer rumours have a polarizing effect: either the start of hope (or dread), or simply a nuisance. As papers worldwide scramble daily to fill the pages, they conclude that in fact 2+2 does equal 5. And yet, while some stories are so clearly garbage, people imagine truth anyway. So, here’s a summary from totalBarça taking gossip and passing it through a sieve.
Navigating the Transfer Market Madness: Arrivals and Departures is a new weekly series that rounds up the transfer gossip and rumours of all potential (sometimes hopeful) outs (Tuesdays) and ins (Thursdays) at FC Barcelona – though it’s not of the run-of-the-mill variety. Agree or disagree, that’s what the comment section is for.
The series will come as a consolidated post every Thursday for the remainder of the transfer window which shuts on August 31.
El Pivote (The Pivot) is a weekly totalBarça column by Anoop Jethwa 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. We welcome your thoughts and feedback in the comments section.
El Pivote is back with a bang to fully discuss the controversial decision from Víctor Valdés to announce that he will not be renewing his contract at the club past 2014.
Tonight in Oviedo, the communal capital of the northern province of Asturias, Xavi Hernández and Iker Casillas will jointly accept the Prince of Asturias Award in sport. These awards are given yearly in a total of 8 categories: art, communications and humanities, international cooperation, literature, social sciences, sports, technical and scientific research, and peace. They are governed by the Prince of Asturias Foundation, established by Prince Philip, the heir apparent to the Spanish throne.
Xavi Hernández and Iker Casillas, who were nominated together, won the prestigious 2012 Principe de Asturias Award for Sport this Wednesday, when it was announced that they had beaten the International Paralympic Committee in the final vote for the Award. The President of the Jury, Arantxa Sánchez Vicario, stressed the values that both players represented, as well as their sporting success with both Spain and their clubs.
According to reports in Spain, Real Madrid CF captain and goalkeeper Iker Casillas (30) telephoned FC Barcelona’s captains, defender Carles Puyol (33) and midfielder Xavi Hernández (31), to apologize for his behavior after Barcelona won the Spanish Super Cup on Wednesday. It is hoped that dialogue between the three club and national team captains can help resolve any conflict at club level before it reaches the Spanish national team.
“I congratulate Barcelona, they have played a very good, very serious championship. I congratulate them, on behalf of myself and Real Madrid.”
- Real Madrid goalkeeper Iker Casillas in an interview with FIFA.
Six Barça players have been chosen as part of the FIFAPro World XI 2010. The club provides more than half the team, with Puyol, Piqué, Iniesta, Xavi, Messi and Villa all selected.
Since 2009, FIFA and FIFPro have organised a secret vote amongst more than 50,000 professional players from the players unions throughout the world to decide on an ideal XI.
As preparations for the upcoming Clasico continue, let us spare a thought for those poor sods whose job it is to keep the game goalless – and no I don’t mean Real Madrid’s starting eleven. Of course I’m talking about two of the most crucial players who will walk out onto the Camp Nou pitch on Monday night, players whose jobs are so important yet whose performances are almost invariably overlooked – that’s right, the goalkeepers.
Last season FC Barcelona and Spanish International goalkeeper Víctor Valdés (28) claimed the Zamora trophy for a second straight year after allowing the fewest goals in La Liga. In 38 matches, he allowed only 24 goals. Barcelona’s defense also stood out as one of the best in Europe. To date, it has been a bit of a different story this season. With 6 goals scored against them already, the Barcelona defense is looking less convincing.
“I’m sad because there won’t be a Spanish team in the Champions League final. It wasn’t a problem for me if [FC Barcelona] were to play the final in the Bernabéu. I’m not one who has those types of things in my head. The elimination was a shame. I have friends there, too.”
Real Madrid and Spanish International goalkeeper Iker Casillas at a press conference on Friday, April 30, 2010.
In an interview with French magazine ‘France Football’, Real Madrid and Spain’s Iker Casillas said that while he considers Lionel Messi to be the favourite for this year’s Ballon d’Or because of his excellent play and titles won with Barcelona, he also hopes that “a Spanish footballer is voted (the best) because many of them deserve it”.
“If I could vote, I would give the trophy to Xavi or Iniesta because they are worthy of this award and because they are my friends. Andreas (Iniesta) and Xavi have won the European Championship (with Spain), while Messi has yet to win a title with Argentina”.
Casillas: Hey, have you heard? The IFFHS has named me the best goalkeeper in the world.