Not a pretty win, but definitely a memorable one. Last night, FC Barcelona became the first team in La Liga to leave the Mestalla with all three points thanks to a 93rd minute volley from Sergio Busquets that clinched the win for the Catalans. Valencia CF had previously won five of their six home games and drew once against Athletic Club, but yesterday’s game saw their streak end at the hands of Luis Enrique and his men.
It is beyond doubt that Barcelona are in very good form. The team has bounced back after a disappointing run prior to the international break with a couple of swashbuckling victories against Sevilla and Apoel. Lionel Messi has broken a couple of records in the process, and calmness and tranquility seem to have returned to Barça. Yet this weekend, ambitious Valencia and their cauldron at Mestalla threaten to cause a stir for culés. Read more…
Everyday Spain’s near 20 million football fans visit their local news stand, pick up their preferred periodical poison and either delight or disgust in the latest happenings of their favorite club. And whether Marca in Madrid or Mundo Deportivo in Catalonia, a café con leche is always part of the morning football ritual. So pour one yourself and find out what’s happening today in Barça nation.
FC Barcelona is doing a series of video interviews with players on their Barça Fans website, and new signing Jérémy Mathieu is the latest subject. The interview is an exclusive content for FC Barcelona fans who sign up on fcbarcelona.com, bringing them exclusive interviews with the players. In the first part of the interview with the French defender, Jérémy Mathieu talked about his first hours as a Barcelona player.
Jérémy Mathieu (30) was finally presented to the media as a Barça player after lengthy negotiations with his former club, Valencia. The Frenchman explained that although it has come late in his career, he is very grateful and excited to join the Catalan club. “I think I’m currently playing the best football of my career. I am very proud, I have worked very hard to come here.” He later added, “I’m a versatile player, but I feel more comfortable as a centre back, I’ve come here to play as a centre back.” More from Barça’s newest signing after the jump.
After five 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.
FC Barcelona could be very close to signing their first centre-back since 2010 as rumors intensify around Valencia CF defender Jérémy Mathieu (30). The Frenchman was the only member of the Valencia squad who did not participate in a friendly against German club SpVgg Bayreuth on Tuesday, despite no reports of injury – usually a sign that a transfer is imminent. More after the jump.
“Now I can tell Messi that he doesn’t own ALL the records”
Gerardo ‘Tata’ Martino recently said that any mistake from now on would prove costly, and that was exactly what happened after the team’s loss against Valencia CF at home. FC Barcelona now trail Atlético Madrid by three points to sit in second place with goal difference as the only advantage over Real Madrid, who share the same number of points. Now, Martino aims to recover quickly and focus and the upcoming games, as he believes the title race is no where near over. Continue reading for more details.
FC Barcelona will appeal Jordi Alba’s red card against Valencia CF after he was shown a second yellow card for, according to referee Pérez Montero, “Knocking down an opponent in a dispute for the ball.” We only hope that justice will prevail so Alba won’t miss any more matches.
Lionel Messi expressed his thoughts following the 2-3 home defeat against Valencia CF, saying that it was a very bad day for the Catalans. Nevertheless, he assured the fans that he is finally back to his best and is feeling completely fit once again. Continue reading for more from the Argentinean.
After the first shock defeat of the season at home, a lot of questions have arisen on how the team handles the games as the 90 minutes progress. After 30 minutes of controlling the game, creating chances, and scoring a goal, the team went into a decline that resulted in their loss.
Dani Alves commented on the defeat by saying that the team became predictable after the first goal and the early, controlled stage, and that the team gave a lot of chances to Valencia, who were ruthless.
You’ve had your chance to rate the performance of the Blaugrana and the results are now tallied up. Take a look at how the totalBarça community ranked the squad and see how the ratings played out.
Image: Manuel Queimadelos Alonso, Getty Images Europe via zimbio.com
Watch the highlights from FC Barcelona’s loss against Valencia CF after the jump!
Perhaps there’s something to the February curse after all: On the first day of the month, FC Barcelona lost their first home game of the season, to a Valencia squad that was completely revamped over the last days of the transfer window. It was also the first time that Barcelona have conceded more than two goals this season, as well as one of the worst all-round performances of the season. In some ways, the incredibly poor nature of the match is reassuring: It is clearly an outlier to what has been an otherwise excellent season for Gerardo Martino, just one of those bad games that every team has. While hardly pleasant for players and cules alike, the blaugrana should be able to bounce back without difficulty.
Here is your chance to rate the players of today’s match. Show us what you think of their performances by selecting and clicking on the stars after each player. You can rate the players after the jump. Let’s see how you all do!
Still top of the league, Barça now enters the toughness that is February, and first up FC Barcelona host Valencia. Coach Gerardo ‘Tata’ Martino senses that despite Valencia’s dip in form, they’re only going to get better, “The Valencia team has unquestionably changed for the better. They had a good cup tie with Atlético Madrid and played well against Málaga. They are going from less to more.”
Currently tenth on the table, Valencia hasn’t won any of their last five league matches. But this has been a week of many changes for the Valenciennes having Andrés Guardado, Dorlan Pabón, Sergio Canales and Helder Postiga all leave the club, and coming in signed striker Eduardo Vargas, Brazilian Vinícius Araujo, defender Phillipe Senderos and former Barça man Seydou Keita, who has not been named in today’s squad. As Martino said, with all of these changes, it’s difficult to predict what we can expect from this “new Valencia“.
Valencia CF arrives at the Camp Nou for the 22nd round of La Liga in the hopes of ending their run of five games without a win. In the meantime, FC Barcelona will look to put a few points difference between them and joint-point leaders Atlético, and spread the difference with Real Madrid, hoping that they both stumble against Real Sociedad and Athletic Bilbao respectively.
The Catalan club seems to have dealt well with the administrative drama surrounding the club and Neymar, and as the Brazilian nears a return to action, it will take the players even more effort to keep the ongoing trouble away from their football.
This Saturday, for the league game against Valencia CF, the first team players will be wearing the Chinese symbol for horse on their shirts. The horse is the symbol of the New Chinese Year which begins January 31.
The shirt will only be used for this special occasion and will be worn on a day where the kick-off time is 16:00 which is convenient for Asian Barcelona fans. The game will be broadcast live on Beijing TV for China, Fox Asia will be airing in Indonesia & India, RS Sports will cover the game in Thailand, and WOWOW in Japan.
Ex-Barcelona midfielder Seydou Keita (34) will join Valencia CF until the end of the season. Keita will sign his contract, that has an option for one extra year, with the Valencian club later this afternoon after he has passed his medical tests. The Mali international who played for Dalian Aerbin FC in the Super Liga China was part of the Sevilla squad in 2007-2008 before joining FC Barcelona for four seasons.
It’s seems like the game against Barcelona will come too early for Keita as he is not part of Valencia’s match squad for the game this Saturday.
As reported by the club Medical Services, today’s tests confirmed that Neymar Jr. has sprained peroneal tendons in his right ankle, and will be out of action from three to four weeks.
As a result, he will miss FC Barcelona’s league fixtures against Málaga CF, Levante UD and Valencia CF plus the Copa del Rey’s quarterfinals against Levante. Nevertheless, he could possibly recover in time for the Champions League round of 16’s first leg against Manchester City.
Watch the highlights from last night’s game between Valencia and Barcelona after the jump!
You’ve had your chance to rate the performance of the Blaugrana and the results are now tallied up. Take a look at how the totalBarça community ranked the squad and see how the ratings played out after the jump.
The Ratings… Everyone’s 2nd favourite part to a post-match analysis, after the Post-Match Review of course. This season, we are going to test some things and try something different. Take a look at it and be part of the change after the jump.