Very Unique and Strange Routine in Pre-Season Training of FC Barcelona Players.
Jul 31, 2012
Javier Mascherano signed a new deal today which will keep him at Barcelona till the end of June, 2016. The club has raised his buyout clause to 100 million Euros, which may be an indication of how important he has become in the scheme of things at Barca. Mascherano, who was incidently signed as a cover for the defensive midfielder role has established himself as the most important element in Barca's central defense. He has been a regular in all of the most important fixtures and the fact that he started ahead of Puyol in the final at Wembley a season ago is a testimony of that. The signing of the deal took place at the Club office in the presence of Sandro Rosell, Josep Bartomeu and Andoni Zubizarreta.
Jul 29, 2012
Jul 27, 2012
- Absence of Major Stars annoys Hamburg Fans.
- Messi was ruled out following a last minute injury.
Barcelona management wouldn't have anticipated how quickly a normal pre-season friendly turned out to be everything other than that. The club and fans were worried after the 2-1 victory at Hamburg and that was due to the injury to Muniesa. He was supposed to start featuring in first team plans this season, so that was the main worry for the club. But there was a PR disaster happening somewhere else. Hamburg fans, and rightly so was really upset to see Barca play a second string side and to make it worse the tickets were priced higher than usual. No one will want to pay more than usual to watch a Barca B+ match. And to make matters worse it wasn't some ordinary match - it was a match to celebrate the 125 years of the Club. Hamburg management did kind of anticipate the chance of something like this happening and actually had a close for penalty if Messi didn't play. Because of that Barca will get only 800,000 Euros instead of the agreed upon 1.2 Million. The entire mess was created by short sightedness of both club management and some seriously unanticipated circumstances. The latest news we have heard is that the Hamburg club is issuing refunds to fans.
Jul 24, 2012
FC Barcelona started their 2012-13 pre-season tonight with a victory against German side Hamburg. It was the first match after Tito Vilanova has taken over as the coach and he should be delighted with victory. Lionel Messi who was expected to feature in the match had to pull out due to a calf strain. The club doctors are monitoring the situation and making sure that the World's Best Player will be available for the start of the season in top condition. Coming into the match, the jersey looked horrible on the pitch and I cannot wait to watch that horrible away jersey. The squad consisted of available first team players and a host of B team players. Vilanova has left out players who were coming out of injury and also the Spanish players who featured in Euro cup. Tito started with Pinto, Alves, Mascherano, Batra, Adriano, Espinosa, Dos Santos, Sergi Roberto, Afellay, Alexis and Deulofeu. The second half saw a different line-up with Pinto, Balliu, Sergi Gomez, Muniesa, Planas, Patric, Llie, Sergi Roberto, Joan Roman, Rafinha and Lobato.
Jul 20, 2012
ESPN-Start Sports announced that have secured live and exclusive broadcast rights of Spanish football championship La Liga for three years in markets across Asia, for an undisclosed amount. The statement further mentioned about the deal that "This acquisition underlines our commitment to football fans in the region as we continue providing the most compelling content to our viewers, and an excellent promotional platform for our business partners." Business definitely, that's in their mind. Some of you would be very happy not to listen to some crappy pre-match commentary in Ten Sports. But I still cannot forget the fact that it was Ten Sports who came to our rescue after ESPN-STAR decided not to telecast La Liga anymore after the 2009-2010 season. Most probably La Liga matches will be shown in STAR Sports channel. Get ready to miss a lot of matches or get ready to watch deferred lives regularly as STAR will always give priority to EPL ahead of La Liga. Don't get surprised when you see Stoke vs Aston Villa match shown when Valencia is playing FC Barcelona or Real Madrid. With Ten Sports at least there was a guarantee that we would not miss any of Real Madrid and FC Barcelona matches. There is no such Guarantee with Star Sports, the only Guarantee is that you won't miss a single EPL match. The big question here is that the leagues have the right to sell the TV rights to anyone, but don't they have a duty to ensure that those are telecast live.
Jul 15, 2012
What Josep Pep Guardiola achieved with Barca in four years cannot be termed anything less than a miracle. May be it cannot be termed as a miracle in the literary sense, simply because this was nothing unexpected and also was carefully planned. But still fourteen titles in four years does tell the story. Titles and individual honours actually does not tell the story of the miracle manager, it's more than that. Guardiola redined football as we know or atleast as we we were all following. In an era when football is becoming more static with unchanged tactics and predictable styles, Guardiola brought the fun back to the game. Watching Guardiola's term at Barca is the only lesson a keen football fan need to understand the nuances associated with the game. He was also able to squash the stereo type associated with the today's game(especially the English game), that "Beautiful football does not win Titles". Guardiola's Barca did play beautifully and they definitely won titles, lots of them. In an age when football is becoming more and more negative, Guardiola can hold his head high as he not only bucked the trend but also managed to instill some belief in them among others.
Jul 9, 2012
Jul 8, 2012
The club has announced yesterday that Seydou Keita will leave the club on free transfer. He still had two seasons left in his contract but the club decided to waive it off. To an extend the club is forced to see him leave for free as there is a clause in his contract which allows him to leave if he plays less than 50% of the match in a season. Keita has been one of the most important player under Guardiola, even though he featured not regularly in starting eleven. Keita was the first choice substitute for Guardiola, but everyone agreed that it never did justify his talent. It was difficult for him to cut into the starting eleven and now with Fabregas and Thiago in squad, it made little sense effort him to stay at the club. He will be joining Chinese club Dalian Aerbin on a 10 million dollar per year deal. Wishing him all the best and thanking him for all the wonderful memories.
Jul 2, 2012
FC Barcelona's midfield maestro Andres Iniesta has been adjudged the Best Player of the Tournament. Going into the final he and Pirlo were the major contender, but his brilliant display took Pirlo out of the equation. He was also adjudged the Man of the Match in the final. Five Barca players managed to find place in EURO 2012 official 23 Man Squad of the tournament. If we add the impending signing of Alba, then it's six.