03 January 2012

Guardiola: “Osasuna is a demanding team, they come at you”

The Barça manager is concerned about Osasuna’s daring approach and feels that their cup rivals will be coming to the Camp Nou looking to win the tie. He also explained that Iniesta has made much improvement but does not believe he is ready to play for the full 90 minutes.

Josep Guardiola does not think it will be easy to beat Osasuna in the Copa del Rey round of 16, saying that they "are a demanding side. They come at you. We have to play well and quick or the tie will be a difficult one." Neither does he think that the game at the Camp Nou will have anything to do with the 8-0 drubbing Barça dished out earlier this season in the league. "That was a long time ago, and a result like that will be added motivation for them. The situation has changed. This is an 180 minute match and we have to try to get a good result."

The Barcelona manager notes that Jose Luis Medilíbar's side is fifth in the league and almost unbeatable at El Sadar, their home ground. "Mendilíbar is ambitious, and that's why his daring team are fifth with 25 points. They'll clearly be coming here looking to win the tie, and by doing that Osasuna will help us get back into competitive football ... we are going to have to attack well and create lots of goalscoring chances".

He was also asked to talk about Messi's condition, considering he only got back to Barcelona on Monday after his holiday in Argentina. Is he ready to take part in Barça's first game of 2012? "He has come back in fine spirits, so we'll decide tomorrow. I haven't asked him if he wants to play because I know what his answer will be. But it's me who will decide ... He is gaining in experience with every year, he understands the game better ... and the sooner he is back playing the better".

Guardiola also had good news regarding Andrés Iniesta, who trained on Monday for the first time since getting injured against l'Hospitalet: "He did the whole session today, and finished all the exercises. He's fine. He has done two sessions so far. It's a bit early for him to play the whole 90 minutes, but perhaps he can go on for a little while."

It has been mooted of late that Jonathan Soriano could be a good replacement for the injured David Villa. "That is one of the possibilities we're looking at" said Pep. "But the downside is that if we promote him to first team, there's no going back for him. He has shown that he can play in the first division, and he deserves a chance after all he's done in the reserves, he has a lot of potential, he fits into the team well. We have three weeks to decide. We'll see how this month goes, and how he adjusts to things."

Tito Vilanova present

Guardiola confirmed that Tito Vilanova could be back on the bench on Wednesday night against Osasuna, but everybody has to remember that he has only just undergone a serious operation. "It is very important for the team for him to be there. We aren't the same without him. In principle, he'll be there tomorrow, but the future will depend on his condition. We mustn't forget that he's only just had an operation. He'll come depending on how things develop. The most important thing is that he is getting better." (via FCBarcelona.cat)

Messi back training with squad

The Argentinian arrived back in Barcelona on Monday and joined his team mates for training this morning, along with seven members of Barça B.

Leo Messi's life is back to normal. On Tuesday morning he trained with the rest of the squad for the first time this year, after working out on his own the day before, just after arriving back from Barcelona. So Josep Guardiola, who spoke at length with Messi before the session, now has all of his fit players back together.

Seven from B team

That made for a total of 25 players today, 18 from the first team and 7 from Barça B (Montoya, Cuenca, Soriano, Dos Santos, Rafinha, Sergi Roberto and Tello). Éric Abidal, who stayed in the gym on Monday, joined in with most of the session today, so the only absentees are now the two who are out with long-term injuries, Afellay and Villa.

José Manuel Pinto was applauded at the start of the session after it was announced on Monday that the reserve goalkeeper will be staying at FC Barcelona until June 30, 2013.

The team goes back to training on Wednesday morning, the final session before hosting Osasuna in the Copa del Rey (22.00). (via FCBarcelona.cat)

Osasuna arrives to Camp Nou with seven drops and two you discard of regular

The goalkeeper Andrés Fernández, regular in the League, and forward Juan Francisco Martínez "Nino", also habitual in the regular team of Osasuna, they are the discard coaches of José Luis Mendilibar for the game in Camp Nou.

The Biscayan was included for coach against the list of eighteen players invited to filial Roberto Torres and Eneko Satrústegui, who has made the starting job in the league on the left side in recent days.
Mendilibar stacks up to seven casualties by injury to the meeting tomorrow: Raúl García, Kike Sola, Ruben Gonzalez, Jon Echaide, Masoud Shojaei, Marc Bertrán and Roversio Rodrigues. Brazilian centre-back was injured yesterday in the first year's training and medical services of the club have announced today the diagnosis: a microrrotura in the medial gastrocnemius of the right leg will also be low for the league match on Saturday in Anoeta against Real Sociedad.

The call provided by Mendilibar is formed by Asier Riesgo and Ricardo goalkeepers, defenders Damià, Sergio, Miguel Flaño, Satrústegui, Raitala and Lolo, midfielders Puñal, Nekounam, Cejudo, Timor, Calleja, Annunziata, Lamah and Roberto Torres, and forwards Lekic and Ibrahima. (via SPORT)

Xavi: "It will be difficult to keep my job for a long time"

The Terrassa explains that attempts to maintain the highest level until you retire at Barça and acknowledges that it takes to emerge a young crack squad who retire.

Xavi Hernandez was interviewed by a media of Algiers during the last call which was attended by the Spanish in Madrid, in early December.

The two Algerian journalists praise for Terrassa player in an extensive interview in French that have been published and can be read here .

Among other things, the finalist to win the Golden Ball, spoke about the values ​​of Barca, who instilled in him as a child in la Masía.

Xavi said that "Guardiola often repeated to us that we support and above all we play for fun, we enjoy what we do. These are the values ​​that have always transmitted in la Masía."

In this line, the player who turns 32 next January 25, praised the level of competetitividad that emerges from the bowels of the FC Barcelona: "I know that there is strong competition and will be difficult to keep my job for a long time, the worse will do my best that so and to finish my career at Barcelona laughing at a good level. "

Algerian journalists are impressed by the humility that follows Xavi, who despite having conquered all having an absolute role in the triumphs of Barca and the Spanish team, not afraid to admit that you will soon see a young prodigy who finished retiring.

Returning to la Masía, Xavi explained that "we were taught to think before getting the ball, lifting his head, protecting the ball and look to partner."

The '6' Barca went on to say that "besides being a football school is a school of life, not only must respect your partner, also an opponent, the referee and the fans." (via SPORT)

[Former B player] Rochina : "The Barça's cantera is the best in the world"

The forward Rubén Rochina, now at Blackburn Rovers said leaving Barça towards Lancashire.

Rubén Rochina is one of the many talents who have left to try his luck Liga in the English Premier League. Born in Sagunto, Rochina was formed in the lower categories of Valencia. After becoming one of the best players of his team in a friendly tournament, still in childhood, eventually landing at La Masia de Can Barça.

After signing and a great season with 23 goals in 25 games in the Youth League, fast performance led to his first team debut with the subsidiary in the 2008/2009 season in Segunda B. That great year culminated with the completion of the 2009 preseason with the first team. Finally, enjoy no continuity in the team led by Luis Enrique, in January 2011 went to Blanckburn Rovers in the Premier League of England from where he discussed his departure from the club azulgrana and the memories it holds of its passage through the cantera of Barça.

In an interview thenational.ae , the current Blackburn player said "I faced a difficult choice , "said Rochina . "I stared at the Barcelona B without any real hope of entering into the first team because the players had to before mine were and are the best of the world . I had played with the national team in three different categories and with the first team in the preseason , but never a competitive game . "

Rochina keep in mind the time and the reasons he decided to take the step of leaving "I felt it was a good player in the second division , but that would not be the first team opportunities . In Spain, s i is not going to play the Baca and Madrid , the Premiership is the best place to play football . when it came to offer Blackburn for four years , was too good to turn down and went . "

He also had much to do with his departure the economic factor. At Barça B, Rochina alrrededor earned 200,000 euros a year, in Blackburn, Sagunto earns this ten weeks.

Forward agreadecido shown by his stay in Barcelona, ​​claiming that "Barca is the best school in world soccer . It has the best coaches and great teammates and players , facilities and a very clear philosophy of how to play football. No need to say that it works , because the results of the Masia are visible with the current first team at Barcelona . Barcelona taught me to be a footballer . " (via SPORT)

Xavi named world's best playmaker

The International Federation of Football History & Statistics has named the Barça midfielder the best playmaker in the world for the fourth year in a row. Leo Messi and Andrés Iniesta are second and third behind Xavi.

Yet another accolade for Josep Guardiola's team at the start of 2012. Three FCB players, Xavi, Messi and Iniesta, top the list of the best playmakers in the world according to the International Federation of Football History & Statistics (IFFHS). Xavi is number one for the fourth consecutive edition.

Members of the media and football experts from 81 countries voted for the impeccable performances of the Barcelona number 6, making him the runaway winner with 232 points, while Messi got 147, and Iniesta 110.

There is further representation for the club in the form of Cesc Fàbregas, who is tenth with 15 points. That means Barça has no fewer than four players in the top ten, followed by rivals Real Madrid with three – Özil, Cristiano Ronaldo and Xabi Alonso.

Xavi and Messi will be presented with awards for finishing first and second in the IFFHS classification at the FIFA Ballon d'Or 2011 ceremony, for which they are also in the running for the player of the year award along with Cristiano Ronaldo, to be held next January 9 in Zurich. (iia FCBarcelona.cat)

The 2011 classification:
1. Xavier Hernández Creus, 'Xavi' (ESP/Barcelona) 232 points
2. Lionel Messi (ARG/Barcelona) 147
3. Andrés Iniesta (ESP/Barcelona) 110
4. Mesut Özil (GER/Real Madrid) 59
5. Cristiano Ronaldo (POR/Real Madrid) 47
6. David Silva (ESP/Manchester City) 31
7. Wesley Sneijder (HOL/Inter Milan) 22
8. Xabier Alonso, 'Xabi' (ESP/Real Madrid) 19
9. Diego Forlán (URU/Inter Milan) 17
10. Cesc Fàbregas (ESP/Barcelona) 15
11. Andrea Pirlo (ITA/Juventus) 15
12. Franck Ribéry (FRA/Bayern Munich) 10
13. Bastian Schweinsteiger (GER/Bayern Munich) 9
14. Luka Modric (CRO/Tottenham Hotspur) 8
15. Frank Lampard (ENG/Chelsea) 5
16. Javier Matías Pastore (ARG/Paris Saint-Germain) 5

Tito Vilanova could return to the bench tomorrow

As it did in the training of the 29th, 30th and December 31, 2011, Tito Vilanova again be present at the first session of the new year with Pep Guardiola .

The Barca second coach is increasingly recovered from the operation in the parotid gland suffered by November 22 and it is one more in the way of working. Tomorrow, against Osasuna , could return to the bench of the stadium, a month and a half later. (via MD)

Villa, morning and afternoon sessions of recovery

Since leaving the hospital, working daily in batches of two hours to hasten his return.

David Villa knew that he was out Christmas holidays a few seconds after being injured in the Club World Cup semifinal against Al-Sadd. No need to hear the official diagnosis from doctors to know that the injury was serious and that he had left several months before recovery. So being. Since leaving the hospital Quirón, on Christmas Eve, Villa has come every day, without rest, to make up sessions with the trauma and physical therapy hospital club and hospital Quirón.

The Barcelona player has not been relentlessly and has decided to dispense with the Christmas holidays to undergo double sessions daily, morning and evening, two hours each to shorten the recovery time of the break in the middle third of the leg suffered left in Japan.

Villa has not responded to the calendar and chose not to occur if a minimum respite despite the dates, went to the recovery of both sessions on the last day of the year as January 1, and will continue until the evolution of spacing allows more injury recovery sessions.

Each day, his wife, Patricia, moved him drive from his home in Barcelona to the hospital Quirón to be in the hands of collectors and physiotherapists, and also with the help of magnet, a machine that helps boost calcium intake in the affected area with the aim of speeding up the welding process of the bone and the fracture healing takes place on schedule.

Much livelier than days ago, Villa has dedicated part of the time you leave the recovery sessions to immerse themselves in social networks: just launched his own official OpenID (@ Guaje7Villa) and start a blog through their website to explain their most personal feelings, not only during the period of recovery from injury, but later, to share his vision of football with his followers.

Its main goal is to reach a hypothetical time to play Champions League final on 19 May in Munich, and also be part of the Spanish team that will attempt to validate that won Euro 2008 tournament in Ukraine and Poland. (via SPORT)

Guardiola wants to put a starting lineup of home-grown

One of the objectives of Guardiola for 2012 is to align an entire team formed in the Masía in a crash rated as important. That would be the icing on a cake that has been cooking for years and that is causing a surfeit of celebration and joy to the culés.

During the present course, the trainer has gone giving body to the idea, ending up placing until a dozen of footballers (before Hospitalet in the Glass) or at nine before going to the Clásico of Bernabéu, the day that the BATE visited Camp Nou.

It was Louis van Gaal who in his first stint as coach of Barcelona expressed the idea: "I like to play a Champions League final with eleven players trained in the cantera." Guardiola, in the final of the Club World Cup last December and came up with nine in the House (except Alves and Abidal all).

A great team. Barcelona coach knows that the chances of success of a team of the house would be synonymous with success. From Messi Valdés, passing Puyol, Xavi, Iniesta and Busquets, all ingredients would have been prepared at home, and Pique or Fabregas, although they finished profiling, I must say, in the schools of United and Arsenal.

Obviously, they see the left could be an alignment type, but would be multiple variants. Could appear without doubt players like Thiago, as well as those arriving from the branch with great force as Cuenca, Jonathan dos Santos, Sergi Roberto, Deulofeu or Bartra. The culés have faced the future with good young talent that crowd. (via AS)

Afellay impersonation on 'twitter'

We confirm that @IbrAfellay20 is NOT the official account of the player Ibrahim Afellay. It's a fake account.

The FC Barcelona announced today, after consultation with the player, the account @ IbrAfellay20 is not the official Ibrahim Afellay in 'twitter', and that someone would be supplanted Dutch midfielder's personality in this network.

Afellay, seriously injured his left knee three months ago and a half, continues his recovery process, oblivious to what someone posing as him, writes on 25 December in 'twitter'.

The bill, which has nearly 19,000 followers, has hardly produced a dozen of 'tweets'. And the first results as credible, the alleged Afellay explained that the injury was favorable and expected return in April and nothing seemed to indicate that behind them was not the Dutch international. (via MD)

[Barça B] Returns the activity in Barça B

Eusebio Sacristan's team has returned to work Monday after two weeks of vacation, to begin preparations for Saturday's match against Numancia.

Holiday weekend for Barca B, that has returned to work Monday at the Ciudad Deportiva. The team led by Eusebio Sacristan is not exercised from the Valladolid-Barcelona (1-0), which was played on December 17. They have thus been more than two weeks of vacation you have finished the day 2, with an evening session with all players in the squad, with the exception of Montoya and Cuenca, who train with the first team, and Jonathan dos Santos, who has worked in the gym. Femenía Kiko, one of the embodiments of this course, has retired before the end of the session as a precaution, noting some minor discomfort in his right ankle.

Have also been allowed to see the two team's injured. They are Ilie Sanchez, intervened this summer in the left heel, and Gustavo Ledesma, who is recovering from a hamstring tear in the left leg. None of them has rested the Christmas break.

In this way, as, Barca B has returned to work thinking about the match against Numancia on Saturday, in the Miniestadi (16 hours). Remember that all of Eusebio Sacristan added a single point of the nine possible in December, matching against Almeria (3-3) and falling against Elche (3-0) and Valladolid (1-0) . Currently, Barça B is 14 °, added 23 points, two behind Numancia. (via FCBarcelona.cat)

Espanyol continues without giving entrances to Barça for the derby

Joan Collet, Espanyol's CEO, confirmed that there will be no tickets available for FC Barcelona derby.

Espanyol's CEO, Joan Collet, confirmed that it will continue without giving Barca tickets for the derby next Sunday: "We won't give any package of entrances to Barcelona because Barça neither becomes responsible for where go to stop like we make us with people of the Curve", said Collet in the program 'Esports COPE'.

"For socio the match against Barcelona is the most important," said Collet. "I was excited to beat Barca and Real Madrid because they are the most powerful and gives you prestige. In addition Barça is the rival citizen and three points would be very special. What happens is that it is increasingly difficult because of the difference between Barcelona, ​​Madrid and the rest but we have a competitive team and we can not rule anything, "added the CEO of Espanyol.

On the sale of tickets for the game Collet commented: "The time is very bad and we impact on the box office. I do not know if it will be filled. The partners have complained they can not take the kids to the game". (via SPORT)

Mendilibar: "Against Barcelona the preliminary round is never to 50%"

Mendilibar, Osasuna coach, discusses his team's opponent in the second round of the Copa del Rey.

Osasuna coach José Luis Mendilibar, has insured that all rival Pep Guardiola is "more complicated" that they could play. "Barcelona is the favorite one and the preliminary round is never to 50%." admitted the coach. His team will try to give the surprise and placed in the quarterfinals of the competition.

VIDEO: www.sport.es

[Ex-player] Stoichkov, new coach of Litex

The exbarcelonista and Bulgaria excoach, Hristo Stoichkov, will from next Friday the reins of Litex, Bulgarian champions.

The exbarcelonista and exseleccionador Hristo Stoichkov of Bulgaria will from next Friday the reins of Litex, the current champions of this Balkan country. The Bulgarian BTA information agncia today confirmed a rumor that was driving the sports press in the country, and specified that the presentation will be next Friday.

Meanwhile, neither the club, which has won the championship in the last two seasons, and Stoichkov, have confirmed the information but do not deny it.
"The Dagger" as Stoichkov is nicknamed in his homeland, the club will also take his two assistants Spanish Antonio Lopez and Miguel Gonzalez, who worked in South Africa's Mamelodi Sundowns to resign in March last year, according to the same source.

According to news agency Novsport sports, the new coach of Litex, who until last December was led by former Atletico Madrid and Valencia Lyuba Penev, currently national coach will receive a monthly salary of 20,000 euros.

Mourinho continues his ground "Against Barça we don't happen we already know why"

Jose Mourinho begins in 2012 as over 2011: being unable to meet its repeated failures to FC Barcelona.

The coach madridista still obsessed with the tie of the Champions League semi-final last season against Barca, and alluded to it in his appearance before the media on Monday.

"Last year we were second in the League Cup champions and were semifinalists in the Champions League, if not further and we know why it was," said the Luso, accused in the past ad nauseum to the arbitration and UEFA removal from your computer.

Mourinho does not consider for now a possible crossover to the Pep Guardiola in the quarterfinals of the Cup: "We have no program for the quarter. Playing against a team or another is not our problem," he said.

"What I see is that my computer is fine, we played well and won many games. We have won 19 of the last 20," he said. His only loss during this period was against Barca (1-3), on 10 dciembre.

Mourinho also would not say a word about the controversial statements he made to the BBC, which said that in two years will find a computer in England. "It's your story, not mine. I had to say I have said and I will not feed your stories," snapped the Luso told reporters when asked about it.

"I am very happy at Real Madrid, but my passion is to England and my next step is to go back there and for a long time" he had said 'Mou' on show 'Today' from the BBC. "Give me a club in a couple of years, but it's good," he joked with exatleta Sebastian Coe, author of the interview.

Later, Mourinho said his words in the media of the club, where he said that his only intention is to fulfill his contract and will not leave if no one check.

Light training session for Messi after arriving in Barcelona

The Argentinian playmaker, who arrived in Barcelona this afternoon, completed his first training session of the year at the Ciutat Esportiva Sant Joan Despí.

It was a few minutes past 5:00 pm when Leo Messi’s plane touched down at El Prat Airport. Once out of the terminal, Messi went directly to the Ciutat Esportiva Sant Joan Despí by taxi, where the team completed their first training session of 2012. The Argentinian, with the Club’s permission to remain on holiday until January 2nd, completed physical conditioning exercises, running and ball drills, for 45 minutes under the supervision of a trainer. In short, it was a regular training session for a player after days of inactivity.

It’s worth noting that Leo Messi, like the rest of the South American squad members, started his Christmas holiday on the 19th of December, after winning the Club World Cup in Japan, and missed the return Cup tie against Hospitalet (9-0).

Dani Alves, another South American player on holiday since the 19th of December, who trained with the first team this morning, was also present at the Ciutat Esportiva this afternoon. The Brazilian completed a strength conditioning workout in the gym. (via FCBarcelona.cat)

Demanding January schedule for FC Barcelona

Barça could end up playing eight League and Cup games this month. Cup ties, tough away trips and the city derby will test Guardiola’s team.

After their Christmas break, the Barça team have been focussed on the first game of 2012 for the last few days - the home cup tie against Osasuna- which kick starts a potentially crowded month of tough games.

After Wednesday's opener at the Camp Nou, Guardiola's men face two away games –first at city neighbours Espanyol on Sunday night and then in Pamplona next week for the second and maybe decisive second leg of their Spanish Cup last-16 clash, as they aim to win a quarter final berth.

The team are then back at the Camp Nou for a league game against Betis (week 19). The Seville outfit were only promoted this season, but Barça faced them most recently last season in the Cup quarter finals. The next two League games are both on the road, with trips to Malaga – in the game corresponding to the cancelled opening league fixture – and Villarreal.

Should Guardiola's team see off the Cup challenge from Osasuna they will face a further two games this month, either against Real Madrid or Malaga. If Pellegrini's team get through, Malaga and Barça would face three successive match ups. (via FCBarcelona.cat)

[Former player] Milito: "The secret of this Barça is Pep Guardiola"

Gaby Milito was full of praise to Pep Guardiola in an interview with Argentine daily "Olé".

Milito begins the interview in the newspaper "Olé" explaining the reasons which led him to leave Barcelona. "I reached an age where he needed continuity. In my entire career, except for injuries, I got used to hold. And while I was in a club and a team that will remain in history as the Barcelona, ​​was not all happy. I told that I served Guardiola play 20 or 25 games a year. For some will be mad, but what I wanted to play. "

Speaking of Guardiola, the Argentine player was full of praise for his former coach. "Pep left me many things. Beyond not having played much time with him, is a technician who certainly influenced me. I was lucky to have many good coaches in my career, as Pekerman, Menotti, the Tolo Gallego, Bielsa, Ramon, but Pep is the best of all I had and those who do not. For me, the secret of the great success of Barcelona ". And not to be alone as a statement without further reasons why Milito claims that Guardiola. "With everything that won the team in recent years, he has the formula to prevent someone to relax. In every talk he gives conveys tremendous confidence to the group. Moreover, because trust you if you say things before Then came the parties and such. He is a coach that does not conform and that it never passed permanently to the players. It also analyzes rivals much through the videos, all designed with options to attack. Those who think that Barca is pure improvisation, are wrong. Until Messi has to meet certain tactical moves when the team loses the ball. "

Finally, Milito talks about the comparison between Messi and Maradona. "I hate to compare. If you did more than Diego or less, do not know. But seeing play Leo, I wonder the opposite: there will be someone before you have done everything you've done Lionel? Is a monster . Log onto the court and have it on your side gives you the feeling that you can not lose. " (via SPORT)

Agreement to renew José Manuel Pinto's contract

FC Barcelona have agreed to extend José Manuel Pinto’s contract for one more season, through June 30, 2013.

The Club will soon announce when the new contract will be signed. (via FCBarcelona.cat)