16 November 2011

[selection] Leonel Álvarez: "Messi made the difference"

With this defeat, Colombia that tied 1-1 with Venezuela like local and won to home to Bolivia (1-2), left with four points of nine possible.

Colombia's coach, Leonel Álvarez, agreed Tuesday with Argentine coach Alejandro Sabella in that Lionel Messi as the "marked difference" in the victory of the albiceleste (1-2) and also confirmed that despite the defeat will combined in front of 'coffee'.

"Undoubtedly Messi makes a difference without the clarity of many other parties. Argentina was far superior in ball handling," said Alvarez after being criticized for not hitting on changes in home games.

With this defeat, Colombia, Venezuela drew 1-1 at home and won at home to Bolivia (1-2), left with four points from a possible nine.

Alvarez, who joined the technical direction to replace Hernan Dario Gomez, said the criticism that his team must stop on the road to recover the points lost at home.

"Now we must have your head up, strength, keep working, keep believing in what you're doing.'ll Have to go to other places to look for results of three points," he said.

After finishing the first part with minimum lead after Pabon Dorlan goal before half-time, ushered Sabella Sergio Aguero who formed a lethal pair Lionel Messi in attack. The goals came quickly, Aguero equalized in the 60th minute and Messi got the comeback in the 84th minute.

The Tricolor''technical''acknowledged that his team failed to manage the ball and that the inclusion of Agüero, coupled with the tactics of the Argentine version, baffled his players. Alvarez defended his 4-1-4-1 and 4-4-2 tactical system and announced that he intends to change, but acknowledged that it needs a midfielder more verticality and possession of the ball.

"I agree, I am responsible, solely responsible for this result is me, the boys were given the maximum and I have no qualms against them," he said significantly distressed by the loss. (via AS)

Neymar: "Barça is from another world"

Brazilian confessed in an interview with France Football that he admires the Barca team and Messi.
"Without a doubt the best club in the world," he says about the entity to expect in 2014.

The admiration Neymar feels for Barca is demonstrated in an interview with France Football yesterday offered its readers. The magazine spoke in Brazil with Santos for being crack and first and only player to not compete in Europe has been chosen among 23 candidates for the Ballon d'Or after the pumpkins that gave the Santos renew Madrid until 2014, the Barca can wait alone until that date: out of his mouth only praise for the Catalan club.

"Barca is another world" , said the mention of the possible final between Santos and Barcelona clubs in the World: "They are aliens and if we can play against them will be a pleasure and an immense honor, would be the dream final, but first you have to think about the first game, the most dangerous " . Reminded that two Brazilian teams like Sao Paulo (1992) and Inter de Porto Alegre (2006) and left the ship without the trophy, said, "can not be compared. The teams are different and today the club is without doubt the best club in the world. "

It also pays to the quality of Leo Messi , who Neymar qualifies as the best player in the world at different times. First, when he confesses that does not look like the Golden Ball winner, because for him there is a clear favorite: "I think Messi will win it. What he does in the club is incredible. The second? Cristiano Ronaldo. Yo The third? No, no. Being among the 23 nominees and is wonderful. And the fact that I play in Brazil demonstrates that our championship evolves each year. It is important to us three years the World Cup in our home. I think about it, but first I want to win Olympic gold, the only title missing in Brazil " .

He also praised Messi when he defends himself against the criticism he received Brazil in the last Copa America: "Do not always win the best. Even Argentina, which was the host, also failed. And Messi, the best ever! Brazil played poorly , but is creating an identity and we learned a lot that loss and will help us in the future " .

On its recent renovation with Santos until 2014 despite the interest of Barcelona and Madrid, said that "at the moment is clear: I was here. I thank two great clubs, two giants of world football, for their interest, but in you have to choose life and my choice is to stay at Santos " .

That's sort of his second refusal to play in Madrid, for his 14 years and former agent, Wagner Ribeiro, led him to make a test: "I spent five or six days in Madrid, was a very enriching experience. I trained with kids my age, I set some goals, but I decided it was not the time to leave Brazil " .

About the future, makes it clear that "I dream of playing in Europe. I do not know when, but I will one day" . And he added that "I've always liked Spanish football, but there are other leagues that attract me, like Italy, England ... I follow European football forever, especially the Champions League, the best tournament in the world. Play against teams from France, England, Germany ... gives prestige. Hopefully the Santos play " .

He confessed about the past that "no regrets" for not accepting the offer from Chelsea last season "because what happened has given me the reason. Otherwise it would not have won the Libertadores, a title expected Santos for almost 50 years. "

Neymar revealed the name of his idol: "I admire Robinho since childhood, I was 10 and played football, he saw the shirt of Santos and he inspired me" .

And on his game, he stressed that sends improvisation: "Everything comes in time. some things are trained, but most in a game comes out. Football is serious, but not too much, otherwise you eat the coconut. It's a game responsibly, but I try to have fun like I was with my friends." (via MD)

[Selection] Iniesta: "We throw the first part, but we knew how to react"

What analysis does the game against Costa Rica?
It was a shame because the first part we have drawn. We have not been good, we must admit, but in the second half and it was the opposite. We wasted 45 minutes and then came the logical reaction to the adverse outcome.

So what happened in the first half?
When I say that is because we did not throw things well, we were not up to par. The positive was the reaction of all with an adverse outcome, showing who we are and turning around a situation that had become quite complicated.

The group got together and tied by caste and courage.
When things go wrong or do not go, the first that we are sorry. When things are bad we have to be given together and the team has shown once again.

These two friendlies do not leave a good taste ...
Against England there is little or nothing to blame the team because we had chances and did not reach their goal and one, marked. Costa Rica, to the contrary, has made us very hard. However, we were brave and went up with the result against. We must learn from these things. (via AS)

[Selection] Sabella: "Messi was very decisive in the victory over Colombia"

The Argentine coach Alejandro Sabella said Lionel Messi was instrumental in the win over Colombia 2-1 in Barranquilla, and the victory gave his players a sign of pride for the Argentine public.

"I think Lionel Messi almost always plays well, you can have one or another party that is not in a good level, but it's hard not to play well, I think today it was released, had more company, and there was a good balance it's so hard to find, but overall I was very decisive Messi to wear down the opposing defense, "Sabella said at a news conference at the end of the commitment.

"The whole team played great height, with a great psychic strength, defense was very solid, very courageous, played a playoff game as we have to play with great character because players hit came and gave a sample of pride for the Argentine public, "he said.

Sabella also emphasized the character of his players to give back to 0-1 against with which they had begun losing. "I liked the strength and character of the players to go around the game, and I liked the team in the second half had more arrivals, and also had a huge emotional balance," he said.

The Argentine coach also said that it is never quiet, but somehow the win over Colombia is grateful for his boys. "Quiet I'm never because I have a big responsibility, an honor that is to direct the selection, Argentina is a footballing country like Colombia, is almost a disease football, then you are in a position where it is the illusion of many people, "he said.

"But undoubtedly this victory today gives us peace of mind, it is always good, it works with more peace of mind, sees things differently and has suddenly been a great time for these guys who made a huge effort," he said. (via SPORT)

[selection; Under-21] Thiago will go to London Olympics

Although the final decision rests with Del Bosque, Barca played first and then the European Championship in London.

Luis Milla, the Under-21 coach, wants to have Thiago Alcántara Barca to contest the London Olympic Games next summer. However, the last word will have the absolute coach, Vicente Del Bosque, since the Olympics will be preceded by the Euro, where Barca player will also be present.

Speaking to Cope chain, Milla was clear about its intention 'to Thiago, as other players in the same situation, "I would have Thiago, Muniain, Javi Martinez and Mata in the London Olympics," said technical support. Anyway, he said that the final decision will be up to Del Bosque. In the case of Thiago, considering how excited you would participate in the appointment of London, today the option with more numbers is the player to play in both competitions, ie from June 8 to 1 of July? if you reach the end does the European Championship in Poland and Ukraine and from 26 July to 11 August in the Olympic Games in London. (via SPORT)

The ten players following the club

Barca always works with a broad list of possible signings. But 10 names start with an advantage.

THIAGO SILVA: a strong centre-back

In Brazil there is no room for surprises. Insurance defense and skillful with the ball at his feet, is the most reliable bet. Under the umbrella of Milan has matured over 26 years and is fully adapted to European football.

Gareth Bale: The left canyon

Their offensive power and have captured in the Premiership. It is the jewel of Tottenham despite his 20 years. Is number one on the left flank. The handicap is that Tottenham is a tough nut to crack in the negotiations.

JORDI ALBA: The great feeling

The Valencia player progression is constant. Footballer skilled and versatile as they come, would fit seamlessly into gameplay Blaugrana. There has been renewed by Valencia and its output would be feasible.

EDEN HAZARD: The bargain 'do follow

The promise Belgian warned not to follow in Lille and will play a big `Away from France. Just 20 years and has been a constant progression. Zidane never tires of repeating that the Real Madrid to sign him.

ESTEBAN ANDRADA: The eternal purpose

Barca takes months following his footsteps and hoping that the recess Lanús 4 million transfer. In Argentina Under-20 international, he is considered one of the young with the greatest goalkeepers.

TOÑO RODRIGUEZ: Well ... and cheap

Racing goalkeeper is 31 and ends at the end of season contract. His great regularity in recent years make it a warranty replacement. Juan Carlos Unzué qualities endorse the sticks.

VICTOR RUIZ: To the pleasure of Pep

Guardiola predicted a couple of seasons ago that the centre-back go far. The Valencia player would win if the whole lot of sports management to focus its efforts on a young defense, with projection and reasonable price.

OSCAR DE LOS SANTOS: Another Brazilian pearl

Is breaking Internacional of Porto Alegre. Is 20 and moves with great ease in midfield. Quality and goal everywhere. Along with Lucas Rodrigues, Sao Paulo, the tandem of the future are Brazilian.


The reports of the Swiss-Chilean youth are spectacular. He turned 19 ½ Bundesliga raffle it. He declared himself a fervent admirer of Barca and admits that his idol is Carles Puyol.


It's the lefty full-back of Granada, although it belongs to the list of Udinese. At 25 years known for his physical strength and ease of scanning. A player more than adequate and affordable economically. (via SPORT)

PSV Eindhoven wants the transfer of Afellay

Aware that Barça will be more difficult to dispose of minutes, the Dutch midfielder who was given back his team.

The medium-term future of the Blaugrana Ibrahim Afellay could be in the club where he established himself as elite soccer player, PSV Eindhoven. Dutch midfielder IR values ​​assigned to his former club to regain fitness and begin to stop the campaign with Barça 2011-12.

Afellay broke the anterior cruciate ligament in his left knee during Barça-Milan in the Champions League last September 22. The long recovery period leaves him on the sidelines until March, the final stretch of the season and when the Blaugrana will be playing titles. In these circumstances, it is difficult for Ibrahim has minute Josep Guardiola's team.

If confirmed the operation, the Dutch international would make his way back to his old club just a year after calling at Barça in exchange for three million euros, although this time on loan.

PSV Eindhoven coach Fred Rutten, would agree with the idea back in January when it was one of the team's stars while Ibra `Would he see the possibility of securing more minutes in the final stages of recovery . The versatile midfielder, who guarantees unfolds with the two bands and can play both midfield and even half a point, go into the plans of Dutch coach Bert van Marwijk of the forthcoming European Championships in Ukraine and Poland and this is one of the main attractions for the young player of 25 years he lived a traumatic injury.

Van Marwijk admitted a few weeks ago that he regretted the situation he had Afellay very satisfied with the performance of the Blaugrana in his last appearance with the Dutch, against Sweden, shortly before the injury. "It was very good and showed he can play inside and out, and midfielder end. A little I can, although not one hundred percent, I'll take the Euro, "he said. (via SPORT)

[Selection; WC2014; Qualifying] Chile 2 - 0 Paraguay

Pablo Campos Contreras and Matthias were the authors of the goals of Chile, six points after the fourth round of the qualifiers for the World Cup Brazil 2014.

La Roja defeated and convinced, something that fans craved after a few days convulsed by the expulsion of five players for an act of indiscipline and the setback suffered in Montevideo in the third round of the playoffs.

Chile took the lead of the match from the start with the connivance of Paraguay, who hoped to rival in its field with the well together.

The Chilean group showed the depth that was missing in Montevideo, with an active Alexis Sanchez and Mauricio Isla bothering on the right side.

In the 9th minute came the first opportunity to score with a solo run by Alexis on the left flank. After a couple of cuts, the Barcelona forward gave a very powerful forehand but soon put that Barreto sent a corner.

In the first part of Ecuador, the shock intensity suddenly dropped, drowsy from Paraguay, who could not approach the arc Claudio Bravo but left no clarity mixed with players of Chile.

With the race embroiled in a game of position, the action came through balls standing in the boots of Matias Fernandez.

'Matigol' told on 25 minutes with a free-kick reached no farther than to nod and that was about to finish on the back of the net.

On the next play, Fernandez took a corner measured at the far post. Pablo Contreras jumped higher than Guarani behind and hit a header that slipped into the goal to Barreto.

The goal combined Chilean Paraguayan slightly waved, but Valdez was too lonely in the skillful Estigarribia tip and lacked the spark that usually shows.

In the second half, Paraguay corset and pulled forward lines to try to unsettle his opponent a bit. The Paraguayans came to danger with a cross and corners, but still without creating clear chances to equalize.

Humberto Suazo Barreto tried again, the best of his team, on 52 minutes with a cross shot from outside the area. Shortly after the keeper saved again the Paraguayans after a kick from Fernandez, who completed one of his best performances in recent times with La Roja.

It was not until 71 minutes to see Paraguay's first pitch between the posts. Valdez headed a small area in the Bravo providentially repelled the ball from the goal line.

The possible tie spent heading the Chilean victory with the second goal, the work of Matthias Campos after a shot from the edge of the box that deflected off a defender and goalkeeper misled. (via SPORT)

[Technical Data]
Chile: Claudio Bravo; Waldo Ponce, Marcos González, Pablo Contreras; Mauricio Isla, Gary Medel, Charles Aránguiz; Matías Fernández (m.87, Milovan Mirosevic); Eduardo Vargas (m.78, Esteban Paredes), Humberto Suazo (m.70, Matías Campos) and Alexis Sánchez. Coach: Claudio Borghi.

Paraguay: Diego Barreto; Carlos Bonet (m.46, Hernán Pérez), Julio César Manzur, Darío Verón, Miguel Samudio; Víctor Ayala, Sergio Aquino, Cristian Riveros, Marcelo Estigarribia; Julio Dos Santos (m.61,Edgar Benítez) and Nelson Haedo Valdez. Coach: Francisco Arce.

Goals: 1-0, m.27: Pablo Contreras. 2-0, m.85: Matías Campos.

Referee: The Brazilian Heber Lopes. Reprimanded Dos Santos, Samudio, Veron and Sanchez

Incients: From the fourth day of the South American World Cup Brazil 2014, played at the Estadio Nacional, Santiago, before some 45,000 fans.

[Selection; Friendly Match] Costa Rica 2 - 2 Spain

Costa Rica for a time shook the worst selection of recent times. Then Iniesta, Silva and Villa arrived in time to rescue a draw. Record with miscue of Casillas.

Games and offer easy excuses: long trip, unexciting rival, floor bumpy political alignment, the League on the horizon. The selection was served every 45 minutes to play badly wrong, worse than it ever did with Del Bosque . Then beat fainting, Iniesta launched the lifeboat and Silva and Villa 's saved from disrepute. It was a party of two Spains, separated by their attitude.

Forest offered the same proposal with fewer changes than those announced. Removed a midfielder ( Busquets ) but did not win a 'nine'. He does not see Torres , Villa has mutated into extreme, Llorente knee betrayed him and the hamstrings and Soldier Negredo was at 8,500 miles from the scene. Five reasons to insist on five small. Yesterday had the head elsewhere for a long time. With the exception of Cesc , the better he plays the role of 'nine' to hit because their appearances are more frequent than the rest. He was where he was asked, but finally abandoned the aim.

A Puyol, who deserves a reward for loyalty, ownership comes great to date. The diabolical enthusiasm Campbell, Gazelle 19 years that Arsenal blanks in the French league, left him exposed. Worse he went to Monreal , which goes for eternal merit, as opposed to fine Bryan Ruiz , whose left leg has always been the murder weapon. And Casillas made ​​his record matched the worst blunder is reminded that the Red. He went outside the box to cut a pass with his right, his worst leg, and left the ball back. It was 1-0, well resolved by Brenes. Definitely, football has some spoilers.

Costa Rica showed us a selection friendly people and a nasty, sticky, with nerve delivered. He took to Spain with the low voltage and shook in a way that is not acceptable to the world champion. Because the selection this time was not lost in the shuffle, like Wembley . Last night gave the center ring for a while and it was evident.

Then came the changes and the flood, the ends (Navas on the right and Iniesta on the left) and Villa striker work. Also the pulses. And then there was a world champion against an enemy that came to nothing. Guaje chained five times more Iniesta and, after meandering in the area fantastic, with a sigh. As with Chile , the little Barca took the role of lifeguards. And Villa was again and again into space and was often to Keylor Navas . Weighed more the fault of his shot that the power of his presence.

At that arreón of poor student had to be called Silva, a football player who, as Iniesta, Spain can not save because they do not spare him much. And in the end his goal eight minutes and the Villa, much persecuted, drowned in disgust. But the journey does not end that prepared Villar improved his oratory aspiring foreign minister or the good name of Spain. (via AS)

[Technical Data]
Costa Rica: Keylor Navas, Roy Miller, Michael Umaña, Johnny Acosta, Bryan Oviedo (Carlos Hernández, m.80), José Salvatierra; Michael Barrantes (Júnior Díaz, m.74), Randall Azofeifa (José Cubero, m.86), Randall Brenes (Jose Luis López, m.58); Bryan Ruiz (Allen Guevara, m.88) and Joel Campbell (Winston Parks, m.66). Coach: Jorge Luis Pinto.

Spain: Iker Casillas (Víctor Valdez, m.46), Sergio Ramos, Carles Puyol, Álvaro Arbeloa, Ignacio Monreal (Fernando Torres, m.70); Xavi Hernández (Santi Cazorla, m.46), Andrés Iniesta, Xabi Alonso (Sergio Busquets, m.46), Cesc Fábregas (David Silva, m.64); Juan Mata (Jesús Navas, m.46) and David Villa.

Goals: 1-0, m.31: Randall Brenes. 2-0, m.42: Joel Campbell. 2-1, m.83: David Silva. 2-2, m.90: David Villa.

Referee: Mauricio Navarro (Canada). Showed a yellow card Puyol.

Incidents: Friendly Match played at National Stadium in San Jose, before some 30,000 fans. The commitment was dedicated to Nobel Peace Prize 1987 Oscar Arias of Costa Rica and former president and Nery Brenes athlete, gold medalist in the 400 meter dash of the Pan American Games Guadalajara 2011.

[Selection; WC2014; Qualifying] Colombia 1 - 2 Argentina

Messi in the 60th minute and Aguero, 84, amended the classification of Argentina, which on Friday drew 1-1 against Bolivia in Buenos Aires.

A goal from Lionel Messi and one of the "Kun" Aguero, in the final stretch of the game, rescued Argentina from the debacle in Barranquilla Metropolitan Stadium, where Colombia was ahead with a goal at minute 44 and cast doubt on the reliability Alejandro Sabella's team.

Messi in the 60th minute and Aguero, 84, amended the classification of Argentina, which on Friday drew 1-1 against Bolivia in Buenos Aires.

Colombia who had gone ahead just before halftime with a goal from Dorlan Pabon, with this defeat gave a total of five points in local condition, after the 1-1 draw against Venezuela on the third day.

The match began with Argentina trying to control the ball, touching, and moving closer to the goal of David Ospina, with Messi as the protagonist, who, however, was slowed by good DFens Colombia.

The minutes passed and it was the visitors who continued with the ball, thanks to players such as Jose Sosa and Pablo Guinazu fundamental in the midfield.

Colombia showed tangled however, without much start and losing the ball, but at least either Messi disconnected Gonzalo Higuain.

And it was from the 17th minute when the situation changed for the locals, who began to spin better plays, seizing the ball and taking advantage of what appeared to be premature fatigue of the Argentines.

However, his offensive work did not translate into long-awaited goal, anxious response to moves that ended wrong.

In the 26th minute, Adrian Ramos finally arrived with danger Sergio Romero's goal but his shot went wide.

Ten minutes later, Martinez was Jackson who could open the scoring after a great pass from Pablo Armero, but the ball was once again out of the Argentina goal.

Until the 44th minute after a free-throw Dorlan Pabon did score the first goal of the undertaking, after a shot that reached right leg to play Javier Mascherano, but not shifted the final direction of the ball.

In the supplementary stage Argentine coach Alejandro Sabella decided to give Sergio Aguero entry for an equalizer and, indeed, his team have the ball again, but again found a good stop Colombian defense.

In minute 53, Messi in a solo run approached the Colombian goal but his shot went too soft and the ball was in the hands of Ospina.

Argentina followed with the ball, while Colombia, as repeating the beginning of the first half was defending himself and trying to come up with long distance shots.

But in the 60th minute equalizer came from Argentina through Messi after a pass from Jose Sosa, before a confused defense of Colombia.

Argentina continued to press and looking for the win, taking the ball and apparently in better shape than local ones.

Colombia had a new option with Camilo Zuniga, 68 minutes, but the ball was stopped while the goalkeeper Romero.

The visitors continued to play at will and good touch them bore fruit in the 84th minute, after a new play in which topped Gonzalo Higuain, but David Ospina could not stop the ball and the rebound fell to Aguero scored the problem without seconds for the Argentines.

The game ended with the total control of the visitors were even able to extend the lead in minute 92, after a new play by Lionel Messi and once again topped David Ospina could not stop the ball and the new top of this, the ball passed within inches of the goal in Colombia.

[Technical Data]
]Colombia: David Ospina; Camilo Zúñiga, Mario Yepes, Aquivaldo Mosquera, Pablo Armero; Dorlan Pabón (Dayro Moreno, m.61), Gustavo Bolívar, Abel Aguilar (Diego Arias, m.75), James Rodríguez, Adrián Ramos, Jackson Martínez (Darwin Quintero, m.75).

Argentina: Sergio Romero; Pablo Zabaleta, Federico Fernández, Nicolás Burdisso (Leandro Desábato, m.37), Clemente Rodríguez; José Sosa, Rodrigo Braña, Javier Mascherano, Pablo Guiñazú (Sergio Aguero, m.46); Lionel Messi and Gonzalo Higuaín (Fernando Gago, m.85).

Goals: 1-0; m.44: Dorlan Pabón. 1-1; m.60: Lionel Messi. 1-2; m.84: Sergio Aguero.

Referee: Salvio Fagundes (Brazil). Amonestó Pablo Armero, Nicolas Burdisso, Rodrigo Braña, Sergio Agüero.

Incindents: From the fourth day of qualifying for the World Cup Brazil 2014 match at the Estadio Metropolitano de Barranquilla before some 40,000 spectators.

Alves rejects a possible overconfidence in the Club World Cup

Barca side recalled that the club gives him "great importance" to the tournament and told they will have to "take care in the semifinal" but could not put aside the desire to measure up to his compatriot Neymar.

The full-back of the FC Barcelona Dani Alves continues to maintain the same thirst for victories since landed at Barça in the summer of 2008.

Alves appeared before the media after the meeting in Brazil to Egypt and rejected the voices that pointed out that the club could not take seriously the Club World Cup. "The players and Barça leaders attach great importance to tournament," he said, recalling the suffering of the last time they touched the KO semi-final against Atlante. "We got a scare and we must be careful in both the semifinal, and in the end, if we qualify," he said.

As expected, the Barca side also asked about a hypothetical confrontation with Neymar in the final. "First you have to overcome the semifinal," he said, but could not avoid judgments about the jewel of the Santos. "Dial Neymar is complicated, need help in my band. It will be a strong fight in the two attacks," he said. (via SPORT)

President Rosell's interview with Al Jazeera Sports News attracts global audience

News of the interview surpassed Catalonia and Spain’s borders, as Arab, American, French, Dutch, Argentinian, German, Turkish and Portuguese news outlets also covered Al Jazeera Sports News’ broadcast.

More than 100 digital news outlets covered the President's interview. “it’s very important because interviews like this go beyond the Club’s latest news, it’s helps the Club define it’s values to a passionate audience,” explained Lakhdar, head of the Al Jazeera office in Spain.

Sandro Rosell’s interview this past Monday with Al Jazeera Sports News was seen globally by over 40 million viewers. The interview was broadcast to the Middle East and North Africa, while Esport3 Catalonia Television and the Club’s online simulcast made the interview available in Catalonia and Spain.

Rosell’s interview was on the front page of all the Catalan daily newspapers, Mundo Deportivo, Sport and El 9. In addition, the digital versions of the dailies covered the interview in depth, while Catalan television and radio stations also covered President Rosell’s interview in Qatar. The news spread beyond Catalonia, however, over 100 reports were made by digital news sources in Spain as well.

News of the interview surpassed Catalonia and Spain’s borders, as Arab, American, French, Dutch, Argentinian, German, Turkish and Portuguese news outlets also covered Al Jazeera Sports News’ broadcast.

“A significant interview”

Lakhdar Berriche is responsible for Al Jazeera’s office in Spain, he's also the face of the channel’s sports section. As the man responsible for the majority of football broadcasts, he’s well acquainted the evolving perceptions the Middle East has of FC Barcelona. Lakhdar highlighted the importance of Rosell’s interview with an Arab news channel, saying “it’s very important because interviews like this go beyond the Club’s latest news, it’s helps the Club define it’s values to a passionate audience.”

The Al Jazeera boss in Spain estimates that Barça’s following in countries that Al Jazeera Sports News broadcasts to is well above 50 million people. “Our football viewership is close to 150 million people, I would venture to say that close to one third of our viewers either identify themselves as big Barça fans or they have some kind of affinity towards the Club. It’s a strong indicator of the potential that the Club has in this region,” explained Lakhdar. (via FCBarcelona.cat)

“We love Barça, we love football,” the Camp Nou calls

The Barça players get behind FC Barcelona's new ticketing campaign to encourage members and fans to come to the Camp Nou.

FC Barcelona has launched a campaign called “Visca el Barça, visca l’espectacle”/“We love Barça, we love football” to encourage members and fans to come to the Camp Nou. Once again, it is the players' messages that form the core element of the campaign.

After the success and media repercussions of the last few seasons with the "Ens hi deixem la pell" campaign, FC Barcelona is running a ticketing promotion for the fourth season in a row. This time the campaign is highlighting the great football and amazing performances that can be seen each match day at the Camp Nou. And the campaign is illustrated with real photographs taken at the stadium recently.

Cesc Fàbregas and Leo Messi are the players that will be promoting the next game at the Camp Nou, against Zaragoza. But the “Visca el Barça, visca l’espectacle” campaign will also involve other first team players like Carles Puyol, David Villa, Xavi Hernàndez, Dani Alves, Víctor Valdés, Gerard Piqué, Andrés Iniesta, Javier Mascherano, Pedro and Abidal. Advertising agency Caldas Naya, and its creative director Gustavo Caldas, will once again be in charge of this season's advertising campaign.

The “Visca el Barça, visca l’espectacle” campaign will regularly be appearing on Barça TV, the radio, the press, online media and advertising outside the Camp Nou. It all forms part of a progressive improvement in attendances at the stadium, with better figures every season. In fact, the first ten games this season were watched by an average of 80,958 spectators. And these numbers could grow even higher thanks to plans to optimise the Seient Lliure system. On average about 14,000 unneeded seats are freed up for matches at the Camp Nou in order for somebody else to enjoy the experience of watching a game in the stadium.

The campaign will also include a viral action and a competition in which fans and members will be able to win such terrific prizes as tickets for matches and shirts signed by the players. On Barça's Facebook page, anybody can view a video showing a series of great plays involving Barça players. Users can then use the number keys to enjoy the show in first person by selecting the different plays via their keyboard ("impossible combinations", "slaloms," "dribbling," "Xavi 360º," "celebrations"...)

To complete the interactivity of the campaign with users, there will also be a very simple competition based on voting, whereby users select the play they like the best and send their comments to fcbticketing@gmail.com. From all the entrants, there shall be a draw for tickets to see a game at the Camp Nou and signed shirts. (via FCBarcelona.cat)