Pick Your Team: A Silly Game for a Silly Season

"Red Rover, Red Rover, we call Xavi over!"
“Red Rover, Red Rover, we call Xavi over!”

Since it’s silly season (almost), and we’ve got no serious posts lined up right now, let’s play a little game! I posed this question a couple of years ago, but we’ve got a lot of new people around the blog since then, so I think this would be a good time to ask again:

What is your best Barcelona XI, including any or all past players?

To make the game more challenging, a few simple rules:

1. You may not pick Messi. Unfair, I know, but it will make the selections a lot more interesting, don’t you think?

2. You may pick XI players corresponding to a typical Barça-style 4-3-3 OR 3-4-3 formation (plus GK!), one coach, and up to five subs (one of whom does not have to be another GK).

3. You can’t play someone out of position unless he actually played there on occasion. So you could play Iniesta on the LW, but not Eto’o at RB, for example.

4. Possibly future Neymars players are not allowed. Players must have actually played for the first team.

5. Do not complain about the rules. My game, my rules. 😉

6. Your best XI is almost certainly not someone else’s best XI. Vigorous discussion is encouraged, belittlement of others’ choices is not. Just pretend we’re all down the pub having a good session.

I won’t post my own picks right now, as I haven’t thought them through since last time and I may want to make some changes. I’ll add them to this header later.

Ready? GO!

UPDATE: Here are my picks!

OK, here are my picks! And I’m also going with the 3-4-3 lineup. We just have had too many brilliant midfielders!

Dani Alves — Puyol — Gio Van Bronckhorst
Xavi — Laudrup — Iniesta
Cruyff — Ronaldo — Ronaldinho

Bench: Pep, Luis Enrique, Koeman, Eto’o, Rivaldo

Coach: Pep & Cruyff will duke it out, but I’ll put Pep in charge as player/coach.

I almost went for Zubi instead of Valdes, but Valdes really is perfect for the Barcelona system and is much better with his feet than Zubi ever was. No contest, really.

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Canadian, cule, corporate wage slave. Came late to the beautiful game, but fell under FCB's spell in 2006 and never looked back.


    • G6O
      May 25, 2013


  1. Messiah10
    May 25, 2013

    The shame of the match and Bayern winning is that Robben scored the winner. I have a serious dislike for that egomaniac. Both keepers were fantastic. It was a good neutral’s game. I was really hoping Dortmund would pull it off. Sadly, I now see Lewandoski and a few others leaving. Hopefully, with the Goetz fee and soon to be others they can reinforce again and promote from the youth ranks.

    • Doug
      May 25, 2013

      Didn’t it seem that the Bayern players flopped a lot?

      I didn’t realize Ribery and Mueller dove and complained so much.

      Not a like able team at all.

    • Nav
      May 25, 2013

      Muller is the biggest twat on the pitch.

  2. nia
    May 25, 2013

    I think it’s a little clear why Tito is not keen on Hummels. He is a little too Pique, no? One is enough. I never used to get why he didn’t push to buy him but, now I do. I still hope he gets one a CB though even if we can’t get Thiago Silva. Instead of relying on Adriano.

    • K_legit in Oz
      May 25, 2013

      Should be 40mill euros give or take.

  3. lyd
    May 26, 2013

    Pique, Puyol, Abidal
    Xavi, Iniesta
    Cruyff Ronaldinho

    Starting formation: 3-4-3

    Subs: Pep Guardiola, Guillermo Amor, Ronald Koeman, Ludovic Giuly, Daniel Alvez, Lionel Andres Messi (18 yr old)

    Coach: Frank Rijkaard.


    Sorry Blitzen for breaking a few house rules (6 subs with Messi). At first, instead of the 18 year old Messi, I wanted to pick Zlatan and make him sit beside Pep in the bench so Zlatan could (re)discover Pep’s personality and patch up. 🙂

    Laudrup, Ronaldo came really close to make it to the starting XI, but couldn’t due to association with EE.

    Thought of Adriano Correia as well for the bench, but he was, you know, broken!

    • lyd
      May 27, 2013

      One change from the bench. I’d replace Albert Ferrer with Dani Alvez.
      Had Messi started, then Dani would’ve made it.

  4. shangauri
    May 27, 2013









  5. culeasacucumber
    May 28, 2013

    Mine is a mixture of players who made me fall in love with the club (early to mid nineties)and those that I have loved purely as individuals since then for their artistry/uniqueness/entertainment value…

    ——–Puyol – Nadal – Koeman———
    Ronaldinho – Xavi – Guardiola – Rivaldo
    —–Ronaldo – Romario – Stoichkov—–

    Subs: Zubizarreta, Frank de Boer, Bakero, Iniesta, Laudrup, Eto’o, Alfonso*

    *Alfonso is admittedly a very strange choice but I was convinced that there really was magic in those white boots.

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