19 December 2011

World Champions with nine home grown players in starting line up

La Masia dominates Club World Cup. Three home grown players also the scorers: Messi, Xavi and Fàbregas.

FC Barcelona won the Club World Cup in Japan today with nine of the starting eleven players the product of the Club's academy system – a great confirmation of the Club's commitment to its home grown players. What's more, all the goals were scored by players from La Masia - Messi, Xavi and Fàbregas, who dominated the middle alongside the three other Masia graduates, Xavi, Iniesta and Busquets.

As if to mark the opening of the Club's new training centre in Sant Joan Despí, which is dedicated to Oriol Tort, a team which bore the stamp of his commitment to the youngsters at La Masia took the Club World Cup in Japan. Of the starting 11, only Abidal and Alves have not been groomed at the Club, with Valdés, Piqué, Puyol, Busquets, Thiago, Xavi, Fàbregas, Iniesta and Messi representing La Masia, as well as five more graduates - Oier, Cuenca, Dos Santos, Fontàs and Pedro on the bench meaning that 14 of the 22 man squad for the game have come up through the Club's youth sides.

In the semi final of the competition , Barça started against Al-Sadd with six La Masia graduates, who were joined by Cuenca in the second half after Alexis Sánchez was forced off.

For most of the players who have come up through the ranks, this is the second time they have won this title, having been involved in the 2009 triumph against the Argentinean team Estudiantes. Cesc Fàbregas, Thiago, Cuenca and Oier were not in the squad then, but Jonathan Dos Santos did travel to the competition, though he didn't actually get on the pitch. (via FCBarcelona.cat)