I am Culé: A Few Fond Memories

This makes me want to get Adium
This makes me want to get Adium

This is a personal follow-up to Kevin’s previous discussion of fandom. I am, if nothing else, a work in progress. Or at least I like to think so. It’s comforting, in a way, to know that in 5 years I’ll be in a completely different mental place, with a different life and a different set of values. And just like me as a whole, I think my fandom is constantly in motion, constantly absorbing new experiences into the totality of all that has come before it.

The whole, I hope, is greater than the sum of its parts, but that’s not for me to judge. What I can do, however, is share those moments that, for me, are treasured deep inside. I’m sentimental too, in case you hadn’t noticed—I love the club and the memories and can often sit for hours reminiscing about this or that match, much to my lady’s consternation, I can assure you.

Let’s start at the beginning, when I was in high school in northeast Ohio, avoiding an unruly study hall by getting permission from the librarian to hang out there. There was a TV in the back that got cable for some reason and whenever no one had it checked out for class (to watch Bill Nye or something, of course, while the class slept) I was allowed to close the back room door and watch whatever I wanted.

Once a week that turned out to be replays of Spanish soccer on TV and, for a couple of weeks in a row, it was this club called FC Barcelona. And then, suddenly, there was a goal:

It was magic and there was no turning back. I was sitting in a high school library, 2 days after the fact, watching the world change in front of me and, though I obviously couldn’t know it then, I had just embarked on a cule lifetime. I watched the replays dumbfounded, I couldn’t fathom these moves, this skill. And yet there it was and I was rooting for it.

I was just discovering the game, to be honest, so I had no preconceived notions of what was good and what was bad football, but Barça drew me in and never really let go. I dabbled with other teams in that I watched them as regularly as I could—which is like saying I took as many drugs as I could, but always preferred a particular one. I graduated from high school and went on to college, where I let the love of the sport grow in my mind and began to understand what it was that I wanted to see when I turned on the TV.

Having lived in Africa as a child, in rural Zaïre, I was fortunate enough to watch children playing a brand of love that they called football. It was at the height of Maradona’s fame and all the kids wanted to be him, wanted to reenact his goals, his feats, his brilliance. I didn’t know Maradona from shinola, but I understood the power of their play and the beauty that was being wrought on dirt fields by shoeless children whose only balls were plastic bags wrapped in rubber bands and string. After some time watching the game being played on TV by obvious masters, I realized that the joy with which Barça was playing reminded me of those kids in the street, who were playing and juking, dancing and scoring, for most of the day, yet never losing their creativity.

It’s probably a bit asinine to push that idea further, but I’ve always felt some sort of understanding that Barça was playing the way I thought it should be played because of what I’d seen as a child, before I understood that I loved the game dearly. In fact, I didn’t love the game then and almost never played, though my utter lack of skill is presumably a big reason for that. Still, years later when I was watching, there it was, that little head fake, the shift of the hips and the flick of the ball around an opponent. None of this kick-and-rush for me, please and thank you.

By the time I was a junior in college I was desperately hooked on the game. So when I studied abroad in Central America that spring, I took full advantage and every moment I had free I spent watching soccer, bonding with my trip coordinator over our love of Barça. And then The Valdes Moment happened. Whatever happens, I know that in my life there will always be the heart-stopping insanity that was the first half of the Bernabeu clásico of the 2003-2004 season. Oh hell, just watch:

I sat on the couch in my host family’s house in Managua, Nicaragua, screaming and cursing and generally being a loud American nuisance, but soon was joined by my host brothers, who realized something magnificent was afoot. Turns out, that was the beginning of an era that only ended after the 2006 Champions League final.

Fast forward to January 11, 2009 and a shift our gaze to a rain-soaked and fog-covered field in Osasuna. I was at Nevada Smiths here in New York, watching with some friends (hi inNYC and Andrew M!) and my lady amidst the denizens of that impressive establishment. When Xavi scored the 2-2 right as it happened we all started screaming and I was pretty much punched in the face and shoved into the bar by one of the guys there, who, it turned out, had accidentally flung his glasses across the bar in celebration. I never even knew that Xavi looked tremendously hurt until I saw replays the next day.

Then, of course, there was the grand finale:

When that came off his foot, we all celebrated wildly, jumping ecstatically in the dark of the bar in the middle of the afternoon as if we knew that that we were the real deal, as if we were fated to see it all end so well. We were no longer the team that gave up the goal at the end to Betis and Espanyol and wrecked our own title aspirations. We were not them! And we screamed like we understood all that that implied and which would be confirmed months later as Iniesta pegged in That. Fucking. Goal:

I screamed like a little girl when Iniesta’s shot when in, oddly while watching it 5 hours after it took place on my DVR because I’d had to work that day. There were 3 of us and we were all jumping and screaming and generally freaking the hell out until everything had calmed down onscreen and we dutifully watched the final minutes in a much better mood than before, giddy and stupid. And not the least bit sober thanks most of a bottle of Flor de Caña.

Those are my moments, but I won’t rank them. They are there in my heart and like people always say, you love your children equally, no matter what. Feel free to share your favorite or defining moments in the comments. And please remember that no matter how we came to be fans of The Beloved, they are our team and we as fans must accept all other fans. It’s a personal journey and it’s been goddamned amazing so far.

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Written by:

Isaiah is a co-founder and lead writer for Barcelona Football Blog. He currently lives in Germany with his wife and daughter.


  1. eklavya
    October 13, 2009

    Wow what a great post!
    I started to watch Barca in 2006 when the name of Ronaldinho became popular and I was hearing it all the time.And suddenly my friend tells me that the CL final is today. I didn’t even know what the CL was at that time cause I knew only two players at that time:
    Ronaldinho and Beckham (thanks to the movie “Bend it like Beckham”).
    Anyway I watched R10 play in the final and I remember then winning it! Since then I started rooting for Barca although I wasn’t till last season (more specifically when I found the offside) that I started watching most of the watches and catching on the scores etc etc….and I can say I’m a bit spoiled 🙂

    The only thing I remember of the Iniesta goal is him shooting and the ball going in.All the rest is a blur. I also recall the commentator screaming but I was too busy running around my house and it wasn’t until I’d done 5 laps of my house that I saw the crazy celebration of the bench which made me run again! That was the craziest ****ing moment ever!

    And finally, I’m in high school but WE DON’T HAVE A GODAMN TV WHICH SHOWS BARCA!!!!

    *starts crying*


  2. Diane
    October 13, 2009

    Now how are we supposed to explain why we are crying in the middle of the day at work?

  3. eklavya
    October 13, 2009

    WOW Valdes makes quite some saves there!

  4. eklavya
    October 13, 2009

    Also the Ducky in the picture is cute =)

    • eklavya
      October 13, 2009

      And receiving a Beer in the face is one big LOL!

  5. Miguel
    October 13, 2009

    “didn’t know maradonna from shinola.” brilliant! i’m stealing that one & claiming it as my own. great post.

  6. Cesc Blanc
    October 13, 2009

    that first clasico win under rijkaard is still one of the sweetest over the past years. that ronaldinho pass, the spirit, the fight, everything…and of course that it was the first win after 4 years.

  7. Justin
    October 13, 2009

    Isaiah. I share your feelings for that goal of Rivaldo. That goal totally captured me as a football player, instantly made me a barcelona fan, and also made me idolize him as my favorite player of all time. Even until now, I sort of resurrect my love for Rivaldo when I use character editors in my football manager game. Lol.

    Rivaldo was the best player for me, especially when he created the goals for Ronaldo in the WC2002 – (1) when he nutmegged himself to give the space for Ronaldo and (2) when he took a laser of a shot at Oliver Khan who, with all his greatness, could only just parry it to an attacking Ronaldo.

    This post just brought me back a couple of years. This is pure nostalgia, man. Good times 😀

    • Vj
      October 13, 2009

      Rivaldo’s contribution in that WC win was vastly underrated.. I don’t know whether the press had it in for him but he was criticized way too much even in the qualifying stages..And that ‘dive’ against Turkey didn’t help much either..

      • Justin
        October 13, 2009

        Yup. It was really marred by that ugly dive and the rivalry between ronaldo (which was obviously fabricated by the media). Nonetheless, he still remains as my favorite player.

  8. Khairallah
    October 13, 2009

    i hadn’t seen the 2004 game before, how i miss Ronaldinho.. anyway, that Xavi goal is a lot like Cesc’s with spain over the weekend..

    and for me, i could say surely that Iniesta’s goals was probably the happiest moment, of my life 🙂

  9. Vj
    October 13, 2009

    03-04 EE vs FCB, Best.Game.Ever. (Atleast for me)..

  10. Jnice
    October 13, 2009

    Damn, Isaiah. You made me watch videos of my favorite player (Ronaldinho) over and over again in class.


    Great article even if you have caused me to ignore most of this lecture.

  11. Blow-Granite
    October 13, 2009

    I played soccer till I was 16 in school. That was 20 years ago. Then I went to college Bachelors and Masters where I only studied and no soccer. Then when I finally started working I rejoined a league and restarted my passion towards soccer when I was 26 (10 years after I quit soccer). About 5 years ago when I was 30, I broke my toe one day(playing soccer) and was sitting at home with nothing to do. Then I watched Barca and Real Madrid games…. and that was that….I became a fan of La Liga. I did not have any allegiances towards Barca at that point. It was the season that Ronaldinho joined Barca that I became a real Cule. It was just the way they played that caught my imagination and I became a die hard fan. Then last year I discovered the Barcelona “Offside” and discovered all these other people that were passionate about Barca. That is when I became even more of a fan!!!!! A big thank you to all the members and contributors to this blog.

  12. Vj
    October 13, 2009

    I remember watching that Ronaldo goal in 96/97.. He was simply amazing back then.. Good Old Days..

    Aah Barca.. you have the power to make me forget everything else..

  13. Jaybxnyc
    October 13, 2009

    1997, I remember watching a US world Cup qualifier and there was a nike commercial that had clips of Ronaldo’s (R9) long runs and goals and I remember thinking to myself 1. WOW that was amazing ! and 2. That uniform was sweeeeeet !. Since then I became a fan of FCB and have watched many matches Ive watched many players come and go however I have to forever be greatful to R9 since he was the one who introduced me to Barca and even tho he joined RM later in his career I take pride knowing that ALL THE GREATS PLAY FOR FCB 1st !!!!. I dont know what it takes to be considered a true fan nor do I care all I know is I hear chills in my spine when I listen to our Anthem, Im slowly trying to learn the Catalan language and I am saving every penny I earn to make a trip to Catalunya in Feb and will try to go to Camp Nou every year after if thats not called being a fan then I dont know what a “real” fan is. If an EPL fan wants to call me a glory hunter so be it, I will proudly claim I have been a bandwagoner eversince that Nike commercial in 1997.

  14. Hilal
    October 13, 2009

    Wow, what a great post! I have not been a Barca fan, or a football fan, for very long, but I remember very vividly the day it all changed for me. If I am to be completely honest growing up I never liked football, never liked playing it or watching it. Living in London I was always forced to watch a bit of football due to my friends loving it, but it never really appealed to me.

    Then, one day, in Nov 2004, I was sitting at home, pretty bored, just flicking through the channels and I landed on a game of football; Fc Barcelona vs Ac Milan….they were both teams I had heard of (vaguely) and there was nothing else on so i thought why the hell not…. I remember watching Barca play, probably for the first time ever and just being hypnotised; the passing, the movement, the skill and OMG Ronaldinho. He absolutely blew me away. Just to remind you here are some highlights: //www.youtube.com/watch?v=hdtG6qOU5ws

    I remember after AC scored the first goal it was relentless, attack after attack from Barca and I absolutely loved it. I thought to myself “how come I havent seen this before?”. Probably because i had mostly been subjected to the likes of Chelsea and Liverpool as most of my friends support either one or the other. I had seen a little bit of Arsenal and even less of Utd and while I did find them more enjoyable to watch, nothing I had seen was quite like what i saw that night. When Ronaldinho scored that 2nd goal, I found myself doing something I had never done before; jumping and cheering over a goal in football. To this day I couldn’t tell you why it happened, why i was overcome with that sense of joy, but I was and it did. From that moment on I was a Barca fan and I spent a lot of time catching up on all those years I missed. I watched a lot of games from different eras and the one thing i always saw, whether we were winning or losing, was a constant desire to attack and it just made me love the team more. At first it was Ronaldinho and his obscene talent that attracted me to Barca, but once i began to learn more I realised that Barca was different to all the other teams and ultimately it is the passion for the beautiful game of football that makes me love Barca.

    I am soo happy i was bored that night cos if I wasnt I probably wouldnt have paid any attention to that game. There have been ups and downs since that day and while the downs are painful, the ups make it all worthwhile. I hope we have another great year of great football for possibly one of the greatest clubs of all time…

    • ElShowDeJason
      October 13, 2009

      awesome story Hilal.

      with no disrespect to England, i can see why somoeone growing up with London teams might not be too enticed to watch footy.

      Not that the US’s footy as any better 🙂

      • October 13, 2009

        But I think the difference is no one (literally no one that I’ve ever heard) claims it’s better than all the other leagues in the world.

        • Hilal
          October 13, 2009

          Well thats cos the claim of being “the best league in the world” has very little to do with football and a lot to do with marketing. It is a marketing campaign started by Sky and very quickly adopted by BBC and ITV to ensure the money making machine that is the EPL continues to grow. I will give you a great example of how the football media machine works here in the UK;

          The past few weeks there have been an abnormally high number of goals scored in the EPL, and by that I mean very few 0-0 draws. I am not talking about 4-4 thrillers in every game. Mostly boring, scrappy, 2-1 or 1-1 results, which while an improvement on the usual 0-0 or 1-0 score lines is hardly impressive, especially since most of the goals are as a result of poor defending and not good attacking. However, BBC and SKY very quickly decided that this increase in goals scored would be their new hook; since they cannot claim to have the best players in their league anymore OR the CL winners. Now all of a sudden the EPL is the league with the most goals scored, hence making it the most exciting, therefore making it the best league in the world. The sad thing is, people here soak it up, they love it, they buy all of it. The same ppl i spent the last few years trying to convince that the Spanish league is as exciting, if not more so, than the EPL because the football is better and you see so many more goals are all of a sudden using my argument!! The same ppl btw who claimed all that meant was that Spanish teams cannot defend. Now all of a sudden the fact that so many more goals are scored make the EPL more exciting.. Incidentally its not even factual since La Liga has seen more goals scored than the EPL anyways. It just boggles my mind the length to which ppl will allow themselves to be deluded in order to claim superiority. I cant even blame SKY or BBC cos what they are doing is just good business really and they are there to make money. Assuming that they will be objective is naive to say the least, since it is in their interest to promote their league more than any other, fair enough. What i cannot fathom is how highly intelligent, normally very rational people can be so easily sold on such dribble. Oh well.

  15. ElShowDeJason
    October 13, 2009

    This isn’t really ranked, just in the order they popped in my head:

    1. The 3-0 Classico where Ronaldinho destroys Madrid
    2. Iniesta. Stamford Bridge. (’nuff said)
    3. 6-2 @ Bernabeu (haha, that rhymes)
    4. Messi v Getafe in CDR, aka, goal of the century
    5. Messi hattrick v EE aka Messi is the real deal
    6. Yaya v Athletic in CDR final.
    7. CL final v ManU. AKA Puyol PWNS Rooney and Crynaldo

    there are hundreds more, but those really stand out.

  16. Jaybxnyc
    October 13, 2009

    * I forgot to add in my post I was only a fan of International Football prior to seeing that commercial.

  17. Ciaran
    October 13, 2009

    Rivaldo’s hattrick against Valencia was undoubtedly the best moment here are some more lesser knowns moments…

    Romario nutmegging Peter Schmeicel on way to a 4-0 victory against Man United in the 94/95 CL.
    Everyone I grew up with was a United fan so a couple of weeks after a 2-2 draw, Romario, Stoichkov and Albert Ferrer gave me all the bragging rights for years.

    The entire season 96/97 with the real Ronaldo.
    For any of you Messi, Ronaldinho or Rivaldo fans who did not see that season, Ronaldo was truly unplayable. If that Ronaldo played in this team then Maradona, Pele and George Best would have had to bow down.

    Beating Atletico Madrid 6-5 in the Spanish Super Cup in ’96 I think.
    Aletico led 3-1 from the first leg and things were not looking good even when it was 2-2 with half an hour to go in the second leg only for 3 late goals to win it for us. I got grounded after refusing to help my sister that evening. It was worth it.

    Rivaldo’s hattrick against Milan.
    Rivaldo had sent a freekick over the Milan wall to score a trademark first goal. Later in that first half, Rivaldo scored another freekick, from almost the same blade of grass, only this time he put it under the wall as they all jumped. He scored a header in the second half to cap another of his one man displays.

    Messi’s first goal for us.
    He had come off the bench for the last 15mins and was playing on the left wing. Minutes after coming on he was slid through on goal and chipped the keeper only for the goal to be disallowed for offside. A few minutes later, Ronaldinho lobbed the ball over the defense and Messi chipped the keeper.

    Gerard Pique’s 6th goal in last years Classico… it was the awesomeness

  18. Alexinho
    October 13, 2009

    You were born in rural Zaire??

    Excellent article, and thanks for the treat of that old Clasico, I’d never seen that one.

    When Iniesta scored that goal, I was watching with a Chelsea-minded friend in a practically empty Irish pub. I was sitting back, totally resigned to the exit, and glad that at least we had the double all but one. And then he scored, I fell over from a high bar chair, on my knees, and I don’t even remember. I remember apologetically hugging my friend (tough luck), but sitting back on the chair and gut-laughing, or crying, or something, listening to some guy across the room going “fuckin’ penalty!” NOT TODAY!!!

    • October 13, 2009

      No, Alexinho, I’m sorry if that’s how it came off. I moved there when I was 7 and left when I was 10 (and when I was 8 1/2 during the second riot (deuxieme pillage), but we returned after things calmed down). I lived here, in case you’re interested.

  19. Jaybxnyc
    October 13, 2009

    I do feel bad about not being able to watch Stoichkov, Romario, and the other Dream team greats.

    • Ciaran
      October 13, 2009

      Don’t feel too bad Jaybxnyc, at least you missed out on the likes of Dutruel, Fabio Rochemback, Amunike, Winston Bogarde, Alfonso Perez and numerous other failed experiments.
      In fairness, I’ll always have a soft spot for Fabio Rochemback for the time he kicked Raul in the gut in mid air and didn’t even get sent off for it… It was like KA-POW, “who me?”. Awesome.
      I’ve tried so many times to get a youtube video with that superkick in it to no avail. If I could, I’d have it as a screen saver

      • Han
        October 15, 2009

        Rochemback was actually nice player he was just way too young. Great Kick:-) and devestating shot. He displayed it later in his career more often at Boro and Sporting.

        BTW: Ronaldo in 96/97 is the best player ever to have played the game(s) I have seen.

        Romario and Stoitchkov were great in 94 and the Man U game a showcase.

        Never seen the 6-5 in the Copa, but Ciaran those moments are pretty much mine as well. Though for me I would add la liga win in last game Barca vs Bilbao and Tenerife vs EE 😉 and Paris CL with Larsson!

  20. Jaybxnyc
    October 13, 2009

    Huh ? Isaiah I thought you was from NYC arent you hispanic?

    • October 13, 2009

      There’s 0% of me that’s Hispanic. German-Dutch-Irish-Welsh-Cherokee. In that order of “saturation”.

      I live in Brooklyn, but am not from around here.

        • October 13, 2009

          Very little, but I’m such a mutt it’s kinda hard to know. I’m 50% German and probably something like 1/16 to 1/8 Irish. Somewhere in that range. Not enough to be allowed to piss on the Blarney stone, I don’t think.

          • eklavya
            October 14, 2009

            Du kanst Deutsch speche?

  21. .......r......
    October 13, 2009

    E.E fan here
    I remember that 04 clasico like yesterday isaiah I was at the bernabeu with my dad and have been pissed for days because of how we lost , we were the better team in the whole first half (and the fact that we owned barca from from late 90s at the bernabeu to that time also made me expect no other result than a win )but our boys went to sleep in the second and barca attacked us like there was no 2morrow and ronnie was simply brilliant
    That is when our decline started really until that season or should I say before del bosque was sacked real madrid was THE team , having the best players in the world and playing THE best football anyone has ever seen while barca were making the wrong buys ( the dutch NT) had locker room problems and a dumb coach in van gaal basically it is the same situation now except barcelona are the one enjoying the fame while madrid have been struggling ahh how I miss those days

    Anyways I’ve notice that most of the cule on this site are kinda new to la liga I never understood why they always associated us with boring football but now I do

    Anyways great write up isaiah enjoy your day gentlemen

  22. Jaybxnyc
    October 13, 2009

    ahahahah my bad I thought you were that spanish looking kid that was on the cover of this site a few months back.

  23. Eduard
    October 13, 2009

    I remember watching the classico when I was 5 or 6, that was the dream team era. Since then, Barca and catalan players playing in the national team have been in the back of my mind. Although I didn’t have the opportunity to watch la liga, I watch every world cup. Then I realized that the champions league was broadcasted(don’t know how long that’s been going on) in 06 and that year Barca beat Arsenal in the Finals. Following year I listened to most games on radio barca until I realized there’s broadcast online. Since then, I saw every barca game. Including the bad season from two years ago and the treble season. It’s been easier and easier to watch la liga. I Expect more fans every season at this rate.

  24. ElShowDeJason
    October 13, 2009

    I hope this keeps happening.


  25. Random Juve Fan
    October 13, 2009

    I started taking an interest in Barca when I saw the hattrick by Rivaldo against Valencia and him scoring that bicycle kick. My interest grew when I saw Messi’s debut and then his performance at Stamford bridge. Im a fan of beautiful, attacking football (ironically Juve is the team closest to my heart) and Barca’s style of play has really caught my attention. Good luck to Barca in the future and stay away from Juve’s players =P. A good memory I have is Juve destroying the EE last year in the CL. FORZA JUVE FORZA DEL PIERO!!!

    • jnelson
      October 14, 2009

      Ahh yes, that was great. Oh and Diego is a beast. Rock on Juve, rock on.

  26. JMoynihan
    October 13, 2009

    The first time I watched the Barca vs Liverpool match, where we seriously passed the reds to sleep before Kluivert made his jump past the defense to put us another goal ahead.

    I remember watching that and being astonished about how we were keeping the ball away from this powerhouse club. (At the time, I had only heard of the big 4 in the EPL, I knew nothing of Barca, Madrid or the spanish style).

    After traveling to Barcelona, I fell in love with the city, the culture, it’s independent spirit, and Ronaldinho’s MAGIC.

    Still in my opinion, in form, the greatest player I’ve ever seen.

    Of course his form only lasted so long.

    Anyway, that goal against Liverpool sparked my interest,

    I loved Barca before the Champions League win in 2006, but I knew I was in love when,

    Messi’s trifecta broke the madridista spirits all over the world.

    I loved that.

  27. jnelson
    October 14, 2009

    WOW, that was deep Isaiah. super deep dude

  28. October 14, 2009

    Truly nostalgic post Isaiah! One of my favorites from you yet! Dwelling on past glories is great from time to time!

    It’s also surprising to see that you and quite a few others relate very strongly to Rivaldo’s performance against Valencia. I was captivated by the way the Dutch national team played.. Full out attack, everyone was attacking, everyone was defending as if their lives depended on it. So I started looking back at videos of old dutch players and a certain Mr. Cruyff blew my mind!! I had always liked Barcelona’s style of play but had no clue of the Cruyff connection.

    It all made sense once I found out he was the one behind Barca’s style and Total Football mentality. I started following them more closely and have to admit that the Rivaldo performance was simply breathtaking!

    Sure, they have been some really trying times when we couldn’t get anything right. I’m not alone when I say that in recent times, Ronaldinho was our catalyst and Messi is merely carrying the torch he lit. So many great great memories but if i had to pick out one moment that I absolutely lost my mind with delight it would have to be Ronaldinho toe poke against Chelsea.

    Messi is the present and the future.

    Ps. I just bought the new original Fifa 10 PC version and it had no serial number in the packaging!!!!!!!

    • Blow-Granite
      October 14, 2009

      Reagan, another Ronaldinho Chelsea goal that comes to mind is the shimmy that he did in front of John Terry and then scoped the ball to the right top corner of the net. Wow that was magic.

  29. Roja-N
    October 14, 2009

    I was 11 when Koemans rocket shot left pagliuca stranded and got us the very first European cup.

    Romario and Stoichkov were 2 of my favourite players. Have been a fan ever since. I cannot express the anguish felt during the 99-05 barren runs along with unexplainable purchases like Rustu, Bonano, Dutruel, Geovanni, Christanval, P.Anderson(injured forever), Kluivert(yes goddamit-conversion rate < 10%). Thankfully Rivaldo's genius got me through that patch.

    Original Ronaldo will always be a god for the outstanding 96-97 blockbuster of a season.

  30. ElShowDeJason
    October 14, 2009

    People, tomorrow, when your curiosity defeats your logic, you might stroll over to goal.com to find this:


    which claims this: “All that stands between Robinho and a winter switch to Barcelona is the approval of Manchester City owner Sheikh Mansour bin Zayed Al Nahyan, according to Spanish publication Sport.”

    But if you go over to Sport… there is nothing of the sort.

    the big headline is “Robinho, crazy for Barca” and talks about how he is unsettled at ManCity, and that we are interested.

    how goal.com managed to pull “deal-reached” out of that article is beyond me. This goes beyond “taking liberties”

    On the good news front, Sport has video of Chygnasty back in training 🙂

  31. Hilal
    October 14, 2009

    Any news on Xavi and his “knock”? Is he gona be able to play on Saturday? Chances are that Messi wont start after his big game tonight, Iniesta is also nursing the knock to his previous injury so we really dont need our midfield mastermind to be out as well…

    • ElShowDeJason
      October 14, 2009

      Xavi and Puyol will not play the next Spain game. Torres says he will only play if he is 100%, and will not risk anything, so he is a big doubt as well. This should be a good game for the non-starters.

      Cesc will be able to run the midfield by himself. with Torres and Villa out, some often overlooked strikers could have a chance to shine. who traveled? i know Negredo went. did either of the Llorentes go?

      I’d whip out:

      LW can be David Silva, Riera, or Mata

      • Boat Forever
        October 14, 2009

        Cesc returned to Camp Nou


  32. Javier Rubio
    October 14, 2009

    i was at Camp Nou when Rivaldooooooooo scored v Valencia! great goal in terms of skill and importance as it took us to the Champions league. i was also at Stamford Bridge last season in the semi final v Chelsea! Iniestaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaa!

    brings a tear 2 my eye and makes me wanna crack open a bottle of Grey Goose!

    Visca Barca i visca Catalunya!!!!!

    • October 14, 2009

      Good lord you’re a lucky human being.

      /jealous for ever and ever.

      • October 14, 2009

        the next time someone calls me lucky.. I’m going to ask ger if she’s met Javier Rubio!

        • Blow-Granite
          October 14, 2009

          You are one luckey bum!!! You Cule of a thing!!!

          • Eduard
            October 14, 2009

            you’ve made about 152 people who read this blog jealous. including me 🙂

  33. messi_fan
    October 14, 2009

    I haven’t even finished reading the post yet. But that Rivaldo goal was something special. I remember watching it happen live on my tv. I’ve NEVER in my life before or since heard a crowd erupt so loudly as when that ball went in the back of the net. The importance of that goal, the audacity to try a shot like that at a time like that, that’s one footballing moment that I’ll remember as long as I live.

  34. eklavya
    October 14, 2009

    What I used to like about Ronaldinho was the way he used to run. It was so different to others, but now he’s not even moving in the same way…

  35. Ramzi
    October 14, 2009

    “All that stands between Robinho and a winter switch to Barcelona is the approval of Manchester City owner Sheikh Mansour bin Zayed Al Nahyan, according to Spanish publication Sport.”

    All whats standing between Ribery and Barcelona is Franz Beckenbauer Approval to send him for free, According to me.

  36. Alexis
    October 14, 2009

    My first memory was a Copa del Rey final played against the EE in Valencia. It was the beginning of the Dream Team and Barça won. After scoring the second goal, I could see myself jumping on the dining table (I was 9 at that time)in a mix of joy and “I don’t know why I am happy” feeling.
    You can see a really young Laudrup, Cruyff, Koeman et al here:


    Then it has to be the last minute championships with the EE failing in Tenerife.

    And this one as well: that was the first time I shouted my lungs out of my body while running around my house like a headless chicken:


    Does it ring a bell to you? A last minute goal, Guardiola jumping from the bench to celebrate, winning the title later on…Deja vu!

    Rivaldo’s bycicle kick goal is kept in my heart, as well as all those you have been remembering.

    I am Catalan, but I believe that being a culé is a feeling. We are all equal. Is like being an Elvis fan being African, European or Asian. No need to be from Memphis to be a real fan!
    As our “Himne” sings: tant se val d’on venim, si del sud o del nord, ara estem d’acord, estem d’acord, una bandera ens agermana!
    Regardless of where we come from, whether from the South or the North, now we agree, we agree, a flag makes us brothers (and sisters) 🙂
    So thanks for sharing your passion for Barça, and I really hope you can enjoy one of these moments live at the Camp Nou soon!!

  37. Alexis
    October 14, 2009

    By the way, the narrators of the first clip are a bunch of comedians, the ones who created the “Força Barça” show on radio and tv.
    And the funny cartoon is “Jordi Culé”!

  38. Alex
    October 14, 2009

    Anybody know if any channel will be showing the Argentina – Uruguay game?

  39. Jnice
    October 14, 2009

    I was listening to Ray Hudson on World Football daily a week ago, and he said he had a slight soft spot for Madrid, but he said his absolute favorite player in La Liga is Ibrahimovic, even ahead of Messi and Iniesta, so I’m assuming he likes the individuals we have, but likes Real Madrid, the team, more.

  40. BarcaFan(BiH)
    October 18, 2009

    I’ve been out of town for the past week and just found this website, so I know I’m belated with my comment but I wanted to say it anyway:

    That was a great article Isaiah. It’s always interesting to hear such entertaining reflections, so keep them coming. I love this blog, by the way. It’s casual and really entertaining and it stand apart from most blogs due to the fact that it’s just so different.

  41. Smashing whenever i stumble on a very good post such as this. Getting a tiny bit weary of the rubbish posts a number of writers produce on their blogs. Keep it up. You’ve got a regular reader now!!!

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