18 March 2012

Alves: “If we keep up this standard until the end, we’ll have plenty to enjoy”

Dani Alves told reporters today that the team will keep on competing right to the end: “Let’s hope we can keep up this standard until the end because I’m sure we’ll have plenty to enjoy”.

“We’re coming up to the key moments of the season and we're beginning to get the right balance between home games and away games”.

"We’ll keep on competing. The intensity and concentration we have in the league will help us in the rest of the competitions”.

Dani Alves was speaking to reporters after training on Sunday and was upbeat about the team's improving form: "The right balance between home games and away games keeps you in the fight for the league title. We're that distance behind because we've slipped up away from home. However, at this key stage of the season we're beginning to recover that balance. Let's hope we can keep up this standard until the end because I'm sure we'll have plenty to enjoy".

According to Alves, this balance depends on the players maintaining their intensity and concentration: "The most important thing is that we keep on competing right to the end, in the league as well, since it helps us in the rest of the competitions". Asked to comment on Guardiola's assertion on Saturday that Barça would not win the league, Alves emphasised: "There's always sense to what the manager says. We can only say that we'll compete right to the end. We have to do honour to the shirt of the best club in the world. The way to pay back the affection of so many people is to keep them happy with our football".

Alves also spoke about the Champions League quarterfinals: "The best part of the Champions League is coming up and we have to be ready. A really tough opponent awaits us. We won't get any gifts from anybody. At this stage of the competition you can't choose your opponent and you have to play as well as possible against whoever you draw". He's not looking beyond the Milan contest and hopes to stay in the goals: "I hope we take all the chances we create from now on". (via FCBarcelona.com)

1,000 paper cranes to aid David Villa in his recovery

David Villa received 1,000 paper cranes, which symbolise good luck, from the FCB Supporters Club in Japan as a show of support to the striker after he sustained a serious injury during the Club World Cup.

Villa: “all of these things give me strength in my recovery. I’ll keep this with a lot of affection. I’m sure that it will give me good luck and it will make me stronger.

“Even though I was injured in Japan, I have good memories, we won a very important title for the Club and for me, I didn’t have one [Club World Cup],” said the striker.

The FCB Japan Supporters Club and David Villa are the focus of this story. Everything started on the 15th of December, during the semi-finals of the Club World Cup. Villa fractured the tibia in his left leg. “There are a lot of Villa fans in Japan and the injury affected all of us. The day after his injury, the fans wanted to do something for him,” said Hiroki Nakano, the president of the supporters club.

Said and done. With the support of World Soccer Digest magazine, the Japanese fans, concerned with Villa’s injury, started their project. They decided to make 1,000 paper cranes, which symbolise good luck and health, with messages of support and encouragement for the FC Barcelona striker. “Beyond receiving a present, which is beautiful and I think these are pretty complicated to make, it’s about the message that it sends,” said a surprised Villa, who is aware of the work required to make the gift. “All of these things give me strength to keep on going and continue with my recovery. I’ll keep these with a lot of affection. I’m sure that they’ll give me good luck and I’ll be able to return stronger.”

The Barça supporters in Japan -the country with the second most FC Barcelona members- will be pleased to hear Villa’s words: “even though I was injured in Japan, I have great memories, we won a very important title for the Club and for me, I didn’t have a Club World Cup, it was the most important title that I had yet to win. I want to thank them for all the time they’ve spent on me.”

After the show of support, Barça’s striker said that he feels invigorated in his daily recovery work. “I want to do it for me and my family, but I also want to do it for all of these people.”

In the meantime, the Japanese fans continue to support Guardiola’s Barça as they await for one of the team’s stars to return. All 1,000 paper cranes are inscribed with “¡Viva Guaje!” (via FCBarcelona.com)

Afellay joins team-mates in training

Ibrahim Afellay, who was injured at the end of September, was able to train alongside his team-mates for part of today’s session.

Abidal was also on hand this morning to take part in a session primarily designed to recover from last night’s efforts.

Three of the Club’s rising talents, Gustavo (Barça B), and Jordi Quintillà and goalkeeper Joseph Fabrice Ondoa from the youth squads trained with the first team players.

Ibrahim Afellay joined the other players in training today for the first time since he picked up his injury at the end of September. Next Thursday it will be six months since he suffered the cruciate ligament injury in his left knee in training. Good news for Afellay as he begins to see the light at the end of the tunnel.

Apart from Abidal, who is awaiting his kidney transplant operation, the warm-down session included all the players from last night's match.

The 12 o'clock session also included youth squad hopefuls Gustavo, Jordi Quintillà, and goalkeeper Joseph Fabrice Ondoa.

The next training session is scheduled to be held behind closed doors at 6 pm on Monday. Immediately afterwards, Pep Guardiola will give a press conference. On Wednesday Barça welcome Granada for a midweek league match that kicks off at 9 pm. (via FCBarcelona.cat)

[Barça B] FC Barcelona B-Alcorcón: They want to score after three days without seeing goal

Barça B rencontrarse with the goal attempt and victory in the match of the day in the Miniestadi against Alcorcón (19.45 h).

The team coach will have all available except Lobato, Tello, Muniesa, Ilie and Miño.

The set of Eusebio Sacristán will face this Sunday against the eighth ranked in the table, the Alcorcón. The azulgranas have the win if they want to return to the great dynamic that had to start the second round of the Liga Adelante, which added two victories in the Miniestadi. FC Barcelona B is in twelfth place in the standings, level on 36 points with Murcia and Sabadell.

The subsidiary of Barça rencontrarse not only needs to win, because it takes four games without a win, but also with the goal. The locals do not score from the match against Deportivo last three days, and also two draws and two defeats in the last four days.

Eusebio may have in this game at full strength except Lobato, who will be low due to an overload on the back of the right thigh, and Tello and Muniesa that continue with the first team. Nor will a Ilie or Mino, which continue low. Dongou, however, yes you can play with Barça B, as in recent weeks.

The game of the first round of the Barcelona B against Alcorcón was dominated by the azulgranas, but that was not reflected in the final score as the match ended in a tie at 2. Going back to last season, the figures are more positive for the children of Eusebio Sacristán. The subsidiary was imposed on the locals in the two league games by 0-2 and 3-1.

Notwithstanding the foregoing, therefore, the meeting will not be easy. The Alcorcón is, in the words of Eusebio Sacristán, "one of the best teams in the sport." In addition, Madrid is one of the best defenses in the Second Division A, and are now in fifth place in less goleados teams this season with 28 goals in 28 games. (via FCBarcelona.cat)

[Barça B] Deulofeu Comes of Age in 'family'

Deulofeu Comes of Age in 'family' Gerard met this week 18 years and the team celebrated with a dinner at the Port Olimpic.

It is the smallest of the wardrobe, with permission from newcomer Dongou, and his majority was an event that deserves a special celebration. Gerard Deulofeu mates decided to hold a team dinner, including the presence of the coaching staff on Tuesday in the Olympic Port of Barcelona building's birthday 'Deulo'. The Blaugrana are gathered around a table and plotted in order to clench my teeth in the last third of the season.

The heat and the jokes of his companions served Deulofeu to forget the annoyance of having suspended the theoretical driving license, although re-examined next week. The Riudarenes wants to stop being the only member with information about the subsidiary that still can not get behind the wheel.

Gerard must be confirmed to exhibit his speed on the pitch. The forward has taken hold in the team and is the main point of reference in the attack. The squad has seven consecutive games as a starter and more and feel more comfortable. In total, Deulofeu has jumped 16 times this season in the starting line and ten others logged alternate. The young Blaugrana have scored five goals in his first season in the reserves.

Besides enshrined in the subsidiary, Deulofeu he debuted under orders from Guardiola in La Liga against Mallorca and the Champions League against BATE. (via SPORT)

Where are the keys to the bus of Barça?

FC Barcelona had to ask a bus to move to the airport given Seville.

He had finished the game. The Barça players quickly showered and met the media also quickly. The aim was to leave quickly to Seville Airport, where charter flights are expected to transfer to Barcelona.

But, lo and behold, they could not board the brand new bus of FC Barcelona. The reason was as simple as difficult to explain. Salvador, the bus driver did not have the keys. I did not know if they are stolen or if he had lost. The only certainty is that it did not.

Overall, the Barcelona, ​​with the help of Seville, had to order a replacement bus to transport the expedition to the airport. There were no further complications and the team could move and take the plane, while Salvador was the bus at the doors of Sánchez Pizjuán waiting for the keys to appear or become a new ... (via SPORT)

Víctor Valdés: "This victory is for Abidal"

The Barça squad dedicates the victory against Sevilla to Abidal. The players highlighted the difficulty of the match in the difficult Sánchez Pizjuán stadium, they’re confident that they will cut into Real Madrid’s lead.



The Barça players were pleased with tonight’s victory at the Sánchez Pizjuán. The team continues to fight for the Liga and they aren’t giving up. “It was a very difficult match, like it always is against Sevilla. We have to keep on doing out part, we have to win all of our matches and hope that the distance is reduced,” said Víctor Valdés.

“Being realistic, it’s very complicated [to win La Liga]. They have a big advantage, our obligation is to go out and try to win all of our matches and wait for Real Madrid to falter. We’re professionals.”

Abi, this victory is yours

Valdés, along with the rest of his teammates, wanted to encourage Éric Abidal. “This victory is for Abidal. These are difficult times that we must overcome. However, with the strength and confidence that Abidal has, I’m sure that he’ll come out of this one,” said the keeper. Valdés also talked about Messi’s spectacular goal. “Another one for Messi. It was an amazing goal,” said Valdés.

He went on to say that he was impressed the by the initiative that the young keepers at La Masia are showing. Valdés helped in a training session that involved all the keepers from the youth system, an experience that he didn’t hesitate to talk about: “I know what it means to play in the Barça youth system, for a first-team player to come down and to talk to you about the game is great. We need to do it more often,” he said.

Praise for Sevilla

Finally, the Barça keeper analysed Barça’s rival: “Míchel always wants to play the ball and it wasn’t an easy victory. We played a very good game against a team that has very fast wingers. I also want to highlight Palop’s performance, he made a lot of great saves.”

Here are the statements made by the Barça players after the match:

Gerard Piqué:

“We played a good game. The Sánchez Pizjuán is always a difficult place to play, we dominated the first half. In the second we controlled the match.

“We have to be by Abidal’s side and give him our love and esteem.

“We have to forget about what happens outside the pitch and start the game off concentrated. The fact that we don’t have Abidal is harsh. We’ll try to be with him but on the pitch we have to do our jobs well.

“We keep on winning three points each week, it’s time to see what happens [with Real Madrid]. We have to keep on fighting.”

Sergio Busquets:

“It’s a very important victory, we have to try and cut into their lead.

“We played a very good first half, we could have gone to the dressing room at half time with a bigger advantage. In the second half we had our chances, the result is fair.

“Sevilla played a good game, they have a great team and great players. We needed to control the match in the second half. In the end, we suffered a bit.”

On a possible Real Madrid defeat: “we always hope, but it’s not in our hands. Hopefully they’ll drop points.”

Cesc Fàbregas:

“We dominated the game in the first half. We could have clinched the game with a 0-4 [in the first half], but playing in Seville always means that you’re going to have a difficult match. They have very fast players.

“We’ll see if we get a chance to get back on track in La Liga. We want to win all of our matches.”

On Abidal: “as a player and a person he’s very committed, sincere and honest. It’s a shame, but we’re with him 100%”

Pedro Rodríguez:

“We have to take it a game at a time without losing points. Anything can happen.

“I’m finding it difficult to score, but I’ll keep on trying. We didn’t take advantage of all the chances we had in the game.” (via FCBarcelona.com)

Iniesta, unbeaten in 50 matches

Andrés Iniesta has equalled Real Madrid’s Emilio Butragueño’s record as the player with the most consecutive games without losing in La Liga. Iniesta’s run currently is at 50 games without knowing defeat. (via FCBarcelona.com)

Goalscoring record month for Messi

The Argentine has scored 13 goals for Barça in the last 27 days, so far he’s scored 51 goals this season.

The Argentinian is on the verge of closing out the month with another record. Between February 19th and March 13th, he’s scored 13 goals in 6 six matches. The streak started with four goals against Valencia (5-1), he opened the scoring against Atlético Madrid (1-2), he missed the match against Sporting because he was suspended, he returned to score five against Leverkusen (7-1) and then two more against Racing Santander (0-2). He kept his run alive with an amazing goal at the Sánchez Pizjuán tonight.

Beyond the goals he’s scored for Barça, he also netted a hat-trick for Argentina. In the month of March, he’s scored eight goals, his best run so far this season. He also scored eight in September.

Messi has scored 51 goals this season. His second best run since he started playing for FC Barcelona’s first team. His goal scoring numbers have improved over the years: 16 in 2007/08, 38 in 2008/09, 47 in 2009/10, and 53 in 2010/11.

Leo Messi is also on the verge of surpassing César Rodríguez’ record as the all-time top goal scorer for FC Barcelona in official matches. Messi’s 150th goal, scored tonight in Seville, leaves the Argentine only four goals adrift of the Barça legend. (via FCBarcleona.com)

Encouraging Abidal and remembering Basora

At the Sánchez Pizjuán, Barça paid tribute to Basora and showed their support for Abidal.

Éric Abidal, who will undergo liver transplant surgery, and Estanislao Basora, who passed away this Friday, were remembered by FC Barcelona’s first team before kickoff in Seville.

Before the match, the Barça players came out onto the pitch with a shirt that read ‘Abi! You’ll win once again!’ as a show of support to their teammate. Sevilla also sent a message of encouragement to the Frenchman with a shirt of their own that read ‘Courage, Abidal!’

Barça also donned black armbands in memory of the winger that played for the legendary Five Cup Barça team. There was also a minute of silence for Basora before kickoff.

It’s also worth mentioning that the other FC Barcelona professional teams, wearing similar shirts to those worn by the first team, also stand with Abidal. (via FCBarcelona.com)

The bench-sausage was not a charm for Sevilla

The curious benches that excelled in the Sánchez-Pizjuán were some of the anecdotes that marked the visit of Barça to Sevilla Coliseum.

Cuenca, the discarded

The young end of Reus was dismissed by the coaching staff for the match at the Sánchez Pizjuan. Guardiola opted for other alternatives on the bench as Alexis or Tello.

Basra black bracelet

The Barça players wore black armbands in mourning for the death of Estanislau Basora, myth as a member of FC Barcelona's famous remembered 'Barça of them Cinc Copes'.

Problems with the minute of silence

The Barça players complained when there was an uncomfortable confusion shortly before kick when the referee José Luis González González seemed not to grant permission to carry out the minute of silence in memory of Basora. Finally, it was carried out with total commitment of both clubs and the stands.

Bench-sausage

The Sánchez Pizjuán against Barça offered a curious picture in one of the least exploited infrastructure of stadiums: the bench. From the second tier of the arena Sevilla could witness that the benches were shaped sausage, responding to a known trademark.

Santi Salvat, in the stands

The ex candidate for the presidency of Barcelona in the summer of 2010, Santi Salvat, was present in the stands of Sánchez Pizjuán.

Spahic passes the test

Sevilla gave a statement in the previous meeting which indicated the starting lineup and he warned that Spahic would be tested to see if he had passed some discomfort. Finally, the center was a starter, but was substituted 66 minutes from Cala.

Messi, 150 league goals, surpassing Raúl

Leo Messi became the second top scorer in the history of Barça reach 150 goals. But a more significant fact is that Messi became the youngest NBA history to reach that figure, beating Raúl, who did 25 years and 247 days, for 24 years and 267 days of the crash of Barça; almost a year younger, according to data provided by @ 2010MisterChip.

Applause for Keita

The Sánchez Pizjuán was a nice gesture to Seydou Keita received with warm applause when the Malian replaced Cesc to twenty minutes to go, thus recalling his career with all Sevilla.

Keita and Cala, immediate impact

Keita's performance at his worst exafición could not start because azulgrana midfielder suffered a setback when his first action in his head collided with Cala, who had just replaced a couple of minutes early Spahic.

Three exsevillistas agreed on the lawn

The entry into the field of Keita allowed Alves, Adriano and Keita himself-all exsevillistas-overlap on the grass, until Puyol replaced Adriano five minutes from time. (via SPORT)

Guardiola: “We place great value on this victory”

Pep Guardiola highlighted the importance of today’s victory over Sevilla at the Sánchez Pizjuán. “I’m very pleased with the game we played,” said the Barça manager.

“We’re pleased that we won in such a difficult stadium. The only sour aspect of the match was that we didn’t convert on all the chances we created”.

“I would have liked to compete for the League title until the end but I don’t know if it will be possible”.

The FC Barcelona manager was pleased with his team for winning their third consecutive match away from the Camp Nou: “in general we played a good game, especially in the first half. We’re pleased that we won in such a difficult stadium.” Josep Guardiola recognised that the team had difficulties in the second half, which, he said, gives the 0-2 win more value: “Sevilla have a fantastic team. We won because we did things well. We give this victory a lot of value. The only sour aspect of the match was that we didn’t convert on all the chances we created. Palop had a fantastic game, he saved four one-on-ones.”

Despite the valuable victory against Sevilla, Guardiola reiterated the statement he made a couple of weeks ago. “I would have liked to compete for this league title until the end, but I don’t know if it will be possible. There's another team that’s managed to earn better results than we have,” he said. When pressed on the matter by journalists, he said “forget it, we won’t win this Liga.”

Guardiola, who lamented the fact that he wasn’t able to see a replay of Messi’s disallowed goal, doesn’t want to focus on the upcoming Champions League match against Milan yet: “first, we have to play against Granada and Mallorca, and we’ll go out to win those matches. Almost all the players play in this team. I suppose some players that didn’t play today will play this Tuesday. Between all of them, we’ll get to the end.”

After the match, Guardiola took the opportunity to talk about Estanislau Basora: “I want to offer my condolences to his family. I also want to congratulate the players, who wanted to have a minute of silence before the match. Everyone said that he was an extraordinary person. He was a pure winger that was part of one of the best teams in Barça’s history. I hope that we can pay our respects to him in the most deserving way on Tuesday.”

He also talked about Éric Abidal. “We think about Abidal every day. It’s been a couple of days that he hasn’t been able to be with us but we always remember him,” said Guardiola. (via FCBarcelona.com)

The curious "incident" of Pep Guardiola

Pep Guardiola starred in a curious "incident" during the match against Sevilla. Luckily, everything was in a story.



It was 41 minutes of the second of the game playing Barça in Seville. The score from the first time it was 0-2 for Barça and everything was sentenced. Pep Guardiola, off the bench, drank from a bottle of water. He finished his drink and, without looking, tossed it with such bad luck that struck one of the people standing next to the Barcelona bench. (via SPORT)

Barça, Sevilla and the public showed their support for Abidal

Without being in the field, Eric Abidal also starred in the game they played Sevilla and Barça.

Although he could not stand by their peers, in the Sánchez Pizjuán everyone remembered Eric Abidal. It was the first game in which the French could not play after confirming he will incur a liver transplant, and how could it be otherwise, all showed him and showed their love.

Even before starting the game, he could see several banners in the stands where fans showed their support anonymous Barcelona player. "Fuerza Abi desde Castro del Rio," said one. "Animo 22Abi22" read another. Even earlier, when the team was on site, some fans were waiting for players with a banner reading "Abidal, ánimo desde Cádiz."

When both teams jumped onto the field, it was with T-shirts referring to French player. The Barça led a Catalan saying "Abi, shall return to guanyar" (Abi will return to winning). And Sevilla did a T-shirt that read "Animo Abidal."

The story was that when Keita was put to warm up and in the second half with the shirt with which his companions took the field, the fourth official it did change. (via SPORT)

[Ex-player&coach] Cruyff: "Mourinho has learned nothing. Must respect more"

The Dutchman Johan Cruyff, former coach of FC Barcelona, has taken this Saturday against Real coach José Mourinho, who has said he has learned nothing, because he believes that the entity has inconsiderate azulgrana.

"I think he has learned little, because if you have not ever won have to have respect," said this afternoon Cruyff, who is also advisor to the Mexican team Chivas, after Mourinho has said this morning that the position of Madrid now makes your team no longer aware of what makes Barcelona.

"We just have to think about us. Before expected if Barça equalized or lost. Now, just think of us. Every game we win is a step towards our goal," Mourinho said, words that have returned to stir up a Cruyff that does not have good relations with the Portuguese for years.

Cruyff has participated in a tournament organized by his foundation paddle in the town of Collbató, at the foot of the mountain of Montserrat.
In addition to his point of view concerning the words of Mourinho, Cruyff has played down if azulgrana coach Josep Guardiola will renew or not, after news this week that the French player Eric Abidal needs a liver transplant.
"See what is happening with Abidal and then the important thing is: the renewal or life? What Abidal is much more important than any renewal," said.

Moreover, the former Barça president Joan Laporta, who has also participated in the tournament paddle, wanted to subtract relevance to the controversy generated a few days ago a statement from former Vice President Alfons Godall, saying that the current directive Barça chaired by Sandro Rosell, was not taking care of Laporta as did the relationships with the Spanish Federation of Football.

"Currently not being managed properly the relations with the Federation. Is surmountable and can be corrected. The Federation is the institution value and, therefore, must have an institutional harmony. Nothing," said Laporta. (via SPORT)

The best and worst of Sevilla-Barcelona

Barça beat Sevilla in the Sánchez Pizjuán in a game as there was always positives and negatives.

BEST: The team responded to adversity. The Barça dressing room again rise above adversity. News of the return of Abidal and his upcoming transplant had made ​​it touched the Barça squad who knew, however, recover and face.

WORST: Barça failed to kill the game. Although Sevilla did not quite believe it the azulgranas again demonstrated that costs a lot close games. They lacked success in front of goal and could have come to suffer if the Andalusians had gotten brand new score. (via SPORT)

[Liga BBVA; Week28] Sevilla FC 0 - 2 FC Barcelona

Two superb first half goals from Xavi and Messi gave Barça the win in Seville tonight, with an excellent performance – particularly in the first half-that’ll be a real morale boost for the team.


After an emotionally charged week, Barça gave themselves a great boost with an impressive win at the Sanchez Pijuan. In a memorable first half, the team were at their sizzling best with two magnificent goals from Xavi and Messi and whilst after the break they took their foot off the gas a little, they were never overly troubled by Seville's improved performance. The win, which leaves Barça seven points off the leader, was a fitting tribute to Abidal and the recently passed away Basora.

Barça showed who was boss right from the start with some sparkling attacking football against a Seville team who themselves clearly wanted to play an offensive game, but were soon pinned back in their own half. Barça dominated midfield, where Xavi and Cesc were in complete control – something that's always a good sign. It was Xavi who opened the scoring too, with a perfectly placed free kick which flew into Palop's top right hand corner and gave him no chance whatsoever.

Barça were creating plenty of chances and almost immediately after the Xavi goal, Iniesta saw a great chance go just wide, then, on 25 minutes Messi played a quick one-two with Iniesta on the edge of the box, nutmegged Spahic and brilliantly chipped the onrushing Palop for what is sure to be one of the goals of the season.

A misunderstanding between Piqué and Valdés nearly let in Del Moral and for a few moments Michel's team came close to shrugging off Barça's grip. The game opened up and both keepers were involved, with Palop saving after a great individual run from Pedro and again from Cesc, whilst Valdes stopped what would have been an own goal from Adriano under pressure from Kanoute before the break.

Seville lifted their game in the second half and soon produced two good crosses from the right and a penalty claim from Reyes and for the first quarter of an hour of the half, Barça were unable to impose their style on the game and even when they began to attack again, it was Del Moral who came closest to scoring on 65 minutes from a Navas cross.

Then it was Barça's turn to come close, when once again Messi and Iniesta combined brilliantly, only for the Barça number 8 to slip his shot just wide. Guardiola brought on Alexis and stiffened up the team with Keita and Puyol and the threat from Seville was under control again, as the clock ran down and Barça duly recorded their seventh straight win. (via FCBarcelona.com)


[Match Stats]
Sevilla FC Palop; Luna, Spahic (Cala, m.68), Escudé, Fernando Navarro; Jesús Navas, Medel, Rakitic (Trochowski, m.57) Manu del Moral; Reyes (Perotti, m.63) and Kanouté.

FC Barcelona: Valdés; Alves, Mascherano, Piqué, Adriano (Puyol, m.84); Xavi (Alexis, m.82), Busquets, Iniesta; Cesc Fábregas (Keita, m.69), Messi; and Pedro.

Goals: 0-1, M.18: Xavi. 0-2, M.25; Messi.

Referee: José Luis González González (Castellanoleonés Committee). Admonished the local Spahic (m.16), Escudé (m.49) and Medel (m.76) and visitors Piqué (M.31) and Adriano (m.80).

Subs: Match played at the Estadio Ramón Sánchez Pizjuán before some 45,000 spectators filled the stands practically. Previously observed a minute of silence for the FC Barcelona ex-footballer Estanislao Basora, who died recently. They also made the kick-off the former players of Sevilla FC Ramón Vázquez and Croatian Ivica Dragutinovic. Both teams took the field with some T-shirts in support of the French defender Eric Abidal of Barcelona, who must undergo a liver transplant.

Messi: "If it were me up I would stay at Barcelona the rest of my career"

Messi reiterates that he wants to stay at Barça, Guardiola praises again and thanked his fellow players praise after the five goals.
"I am grateful and I am very happy that my colleagues send me those words of support," he assured.


The Argentine forward Of Barça Leo Messi, he told Sky Sports he wants to stay "forever" in the azulgrana side, where he would end his career. The Argentine has reaffirmed that Pep Guardiola is "the best coach in the world" because it makes the Barça players see every game "as a final."

"The truth is that my idea has always been to stay in Barcelona and spend the rest of my career here. As I always say, you never know what can happen in the future, but for me if I would stay at Barcelona rest of my career, "said Messi.

Messi stands to Barça today. "I have not seen the other big teams that have existed throughout history, mainly because of my age. From what I've seen I think is the best, but I can not really compare because I do not know enough about the other "he assured.

On 10 azulgrana believes that "the arrival of Guardiola has made the plays in this way. When it was above me play near the goal, to score more goals than to his arrival, he did not so regularly ". "It made us better prepare for the games, making every game look like it's a final. Prepare thoroughly parties and everything he does shows that it is the best coach in the world," he added.

Messi also spoke of the admiration received after the five goals to Bayer Leverkusen (7-1). Among the praise was showered the Argentine highlights of Manchester United player Wayne Rooney, who wrote in his account of the social network Twitter: "Messi is a joke, for me the best ever." "It was amazing that Rooney would say those things about me. I am grateful and I am very happy that my colleagues send me those words of support, especially when players from the class of Rooney" has ruled. (via MD)