Barca v Xerez LiveBlog

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In my fantasy life, I’m a Barca-crazed contributor over at Barcelona Football Blog. In my real life, I’m a full-time journalist at the Chicago Tribune, based in Chicago, Illinois.


  1. Jnice
    April 24, 2010

    Valdés; Puyol, Márquez, Chygrynskiy, Maxwell; Xavi, Touré, Keita; Jeffen, Ibrahimovic y Henry.

  2. y2k156
    April 24, 2010

    Interesting line up. Should be enough still to get the job done. I am sure that if Yaya has good game today, he will start mid week.

    Looking forward to see how Jeffren and Henry play.

  3. Ciaran
    April 24, 2010

    So is it fair to say that the Chygrynskiy experiment failed?

    • Vj
      April 24, 2010

      He’s still 23.. Give him another year..

      • barca96
        April 24, 2010

        i dont know vj. he cant even cut it against xerez

        • gv
          April 24, 2010

          maxwell used to play like this too, until he was given more time to play.

  4. Whatever
    April 24, 2010

    If Toure doesn’t start instead of Busquets on Wednesday, I will really hunt and shoot Pep down.

  5. barca96
    April 24, 2010

    yaya MoM.
    too bad marquez went out early.
    ibra had a horrendous 1st half but made it up in the 2nd.
    xavi commanding as usual.
    chiggy had a horrible 1st half but was somehow spared.
    i guess pep is scared that by taking chiggy off, it will ruin his already low confidence.

    • waleed
      April 24, 2010

      Pique substitution made Chiggy look better, lack of confidence is his main problem,

  6. stephen
    April 24, 2010

    Yaya MOTM in my book too. I hope he plays wednesday, and that Keita can pick up the pace, we need him now more than ever.

    Henry, awful, just awful.

      • barca96
        April 24, 2010

        nope but he rean out of steam in the 2nd.
        in fact, in the 1st half he was the most active forward.

  7. Reagan
    April 24, 2010

    JUST IN: sneijder went of with a muscular problem, doubtful for the Barca game

  8. Ciaran
    April 24, 2010

    Not a bad thing if Sneijder can’t play. Hopefully Maicon won’t be able to lineup either. That would be sweet.
    Either way, I just hope we play our game which would be enough.

    All I have to say on the Chygrynskiy situation is thank fuck he is cup tied for the CL because he isn’t good enough to wear the jersey. I’m sorry but he is not better than Botia, Caceres or Henrique. Clearly Pep isn’t as good at talent spotting as he is at coaching/

    Zaragoza tried hard but couldn’t win us the league. Looks like we’ll have to do that for ourselves.

    • BA
      April 24, 2010

      i tried to make this point during the liveblog and was shouted down. sorry, but i’d much rather us bring up one of Botia, Muniesa or Fontàs than keep with Chyg. the money we spent on him (€25m?) was outrageous and he’s been a complete liability since coming into the side. if we’re waiting for him to improve put him out on loan, but even if he turns into a center-back of Marquez’s quality (which looks VERY doubtful…), he wouldn’t be worth €25m.

      • barca96
        April 24, 2010

        botia, fontas and muniesa is our youth player and they know our style better. they cannot be worse than chiggy

    • cliveee
      April 25, 2010

      no, i hope maicon play. i still wanna see how good he really is against us. to me, alves won the two rounds in the group stage of our clash. but in this crucial knock-out stage, maicon got the upperhand because he scored a goal against us and looked very well offensively and have a reasonable balance defensively. the best right back of today’s footballing world is still to be decided, and i want to see how will alves respond.

      if we are not good enough to beat all other team regardless of how good they are, we deservedly get knocked out.

  9. waleed
    April 24, 2010

    its more healthy not to watch EE games!!
    even when they play so bad and somehow manage to grab 3 points at the end!
    I believe the game against Villa Real, will decide the title!

  10. Jose
    April 24, 2010

    I doubt we’ll get any favors for the rest of the season. If we do, it’ll be from Mallorca.

    • stephen
      April 24, 2010

      I think the liga is ours to win, really if we look at opponents, they all just seem to give it up to madrid which is sad.

      • Vj
        April 24, 2010

        Which is maybe what their fans must also be saying.. except for Espanyol – Against us they play better than EE..

        We have racked up a new points record in La Liga with 87 points, with 4! games to go.. Sad really, this isn’t La Liga of yore, where every away game was a disaster waiting to occur..

        I wish La Liga would be more unpredictable next season..

        • DontPanic
          April 24, 2010

          Not bloody likely. La Liga is going to be even more skewed next year. Real is going to spend money, so will Barca. Valencia is going to lose their best two players (probably to RM and Barca), Sevilla is going to make a run for it at he beginning of the season and then fall off (unless they hire Pellegrini, I have a feeling he would do wonders at Sevilla). And the rest, well there isn’t anybody else. Not as a serious title contender. La Liga truly is turning into SPL.

          • jordi™
            April 24, 2010

            I dont know, money spent or not, since its after a worldcup, there probably will be a lot of injuries during the next season so that may even things out a little.

  11. Vj
    April 24, 2010

    Oh and yeah, I know everyone knows it, but we are entering what is our umpteenth crucial week.. And lets face it, its the hardest and for all the marbles..



  12. evil that women do
    April 24, 2010

    so any thoughts on Inter’s game on Wednesday? i have feeling we’re going to penalty shootout. anybody agree with me !

    • Kxevin
      April 24, 2010

      Sneidjer will play, Maicon will play. They will come out of the blocks gangbusters, to put us on our heels any maybe cadge that crucial away goal that would make a comeback nigh-impossible. If they get to the half 0-0, Mourinho parks it and hopes for the best.

  13. Jim
    April 24, 2010

    Sounds like the Liveblog was fun again ! Good going discussion. Don’t know how you can all pay attention to something else when the game is on. /i can’t take my eyes off the TV.

    I suppose the main thing is we got away with it tonight. Hopefully without injuries but a few ropey performances.

    Good from Yaya ( apart from their goal – am i the only one not entirely blaming Chygrynsky for that? ) Looked to me like it was a bad pass from Yaya, then loose control from Chiggy. Blaming Marquez is a bit steep after those shennanigans. You’d be as well blaming VV for being beaten from a steep angle at his near post.

    Better performance from Henry first half. He still gets my vote for Inter. Good to see Ibra get a goal – I think i was more impressed with the assist that he knew Henry was there at all. However, touch was still way off, imo and he doesn’t put nearly enough pressure on the opposition when we lose the ball near him. Watch the run he makes to put pressure on in the 65th minute. That’s the sort of chasing he needs to do. Wasn’t good to hear the crowd whistling him though.

    Chiggy should be left till next season I fear. He’s suffering badly from lack of confidence and he and Marquez didn’t inspire any confidence at all – and I say that as a Marquez admirer.

  14. Kxevin
    April 24, 2010

    Hooey, BA. Nobody shouted you down. What we did say is that Txigrinski hasn’t been the universal disaster that has become the popular line. He was much better before his injury, and is working his way back. Except for the culpability in the goal, which all of our defenders have had this season (Pique even knocked in an own goal, right?), he didn’t have that bad of a match.

    As for Henry, he missed a couple of good chances. So did Ibrahimovic. And Messi screwed the team by not passing. Which means what?

    Henry looked good today. Very active, moved the ball well and is aces at taking and controlling with his back to the defense, and distributing. Pedro! needs to learn that skill, frankly. The crowd whistles Txigrinski because they’re mostly dimwits of the type who want to see Krkic in big matches. ‘Nuff said. Busquets has directly cost us more goals than Txigrinski, and they love them some Busquets. He is Catalan, after all, so his grading curve is very different.

    • barca96
      April 24, 2010

      botia, fontas and muniesa cant be worse than chigwimpy for sure

    • stephen
      April 24, 2010

      agree with Kev. I think he did fine, I don’t like him with marquez though, i feel the insecurity in BOTH, now with pique in, he was much better, but we’d also taken control of the ball so it did not make its way back there as often, so.. its a doubtful situation. I think next season when he has more minutes, he’ll do fine.

  15. cliveee
    April 25, 2010

    i can’t stop asking myself why The Yaya is not playing in a more advanced role like today’s more often. Guardiola tried several times in this season to push the man mountain forward, to create offensive threat as huge as volcanic eruption. now that iniesta is injured, we keep asking who should fill in and take the offensive spot. plus the tendency of starting busquets is becoming a usual thing. i just can’t stop asking, why don’t you want that threat up front to keep the opposition’s defenders busy. i am totally calling The Yaya to do the same thing against Inter. I don’t know why he didn’t play at all. I do not have that wisdom and vision to see how not playing Yaya is a better plan. You should argue, of course, it is only Xerez and he was made to look good against a relegation side. but seriously, they did not look like they are going back to the segunda time and again. the way the giant move in space, on the ball and making explosive runs and also defending the midfield is blowing me away.

    • barca96
      April 25, 2010

      he has a better shot than keita thats for sure.
      and is better defensively.
      but the strong point of keita is that he covers a lot of ground.
      but the again, he doesn’t have many passing range.
      he did however had a wonderful assist against xerez.

    • Tim
      April 25, 2010


      Catalan news site Sport described an unusual occurance that took place at the end of the match between FC Barcelona and Xerex CD. As soon as Muñiz Fernández blew the final whistle, the azulgrana players were handed t-shirts to wear as they applauded the supporters who had come to the stadium.

      Pep Guardiola and his team want to convert the fanbase into the ‘12th player’ this coming Wednesday against Inter Milan. Barça needs to overcome their 3-1 defeat to earn their place in the grand final of the Champions League in the Bernabéu, and the campaign to support the players is already under way.

      On the front, they promised, “Nos dejaremos la piel (we will leave behind our skin),” referring to the expression Barcelona has been using as their motto this season to garner the support of their fans. It means they promise to play their hearts out during the return leg of the Champions League semifinal match against Inter Milan. On the back: “El miércoles a las ocho, todos en el Camp Nou. Remontada (Wednesday at eight, all in Camp Nou. Overcome.).”

  16. Eklavya
    April 25, 2010

    JDS is out for 3 weeks according to totalBarca.

    more YAYA!!!

  17. Hilal
    April 25, 2010

    I know a lot of ppl are pointing the finger at Chygy for the goal, but really it was more Yayas fault than Chygy. HE received an absolutely awful pass from Yaya, under pressure from two players and was always likely to lose out. He is not Xavi, Iniesta or Messi and really shouldnt be expected to be able to receive the ball under such pressure, expecially already being low on confidence. Then everybody was out of position, cant really fault Marquez for that one either.

    I just wanted to point that out because Marquez and Chygy get a lot of shit, whereas our man mountain tends to get a lot of protection. This time though I dont think you can really lay the blame squarely on Chygy or Marquez. It all started with a bad bass from Yaya and I find it odd that nobody it pointing that out. There is a tendency to find a scapegoat and blame them for all the mistakes and it just aint right. Players like Chygy, Marquez, Ibra and Busquets seem to get shit whenever they are anywhere near a bad play, even if they are not really to blame.

    LEts be fair, besides the goal, Chygy played a pretty decent game, didnt do too much wrong. When Pique came on I didnt see either of them put a foot wrong. Defensive pairings are all about communication and understanding and maybe there isnt much of it between Marquez and Chygy cos once Pique came on Chygy looked a diff player.

    The potential is there. He could be a great centre back for us one day and I find it very sad that so many ppl are writing him off already. Nothing is more dissapointing than hearing one of our own players being booed or jeered by their own fans. That is just NOT the way to treat your own.

    • barca96
      April 25, 2010

      it would be totally different if it was a barca youth product.
      the crowd would cheer them on instead of booing. but thats just natural.

  18. Lumi
    April 25, 2010

    Why did Pep not rest Xavi. Is it that without him and messi we cannot salvage a win? If it’s so then the pep project was not a complete success. My take on Wednesday. Yaya should be instructed to man-mark Sneijder. One of our wing backs should stay home more. Henry should start the first half and if his performance is average he should be subbed for Pedro. Busquets should start instead of keita. We do not need any iron or steel in the middle. Alves should learn how to cross(apart from assissting). Messi should do anything magically possible for us to qualify. Even if it requires him taking drugs(which i do not recommend) and Lastly Ibrahim should Brace the hell up. It is now or never. THE MEETING ON WEDNESDAY IS A DO OR DIE AFFAIR.

    • Jim
      April 25, 2010

      Anything else ? 🙂

      Seriously, you have a point about our reliance on Xavi but who wouldn’t rely on him and don’t forget we have Iniesta missing which is huge imo.

      It is fair to say that we had to bring Pique and Messi on to ensure a win in the last game and I am a little disappointed that was the case and also at the immediate change in the game. The others shouldn’t be bit part players at their salaries but the fact is that any team lucky enough to have Xavi, Iniesta and Messi will end up relying on them. It’s human nature I’m afraid. I remember years ago when Kenny Dalglish played for Celtic I watched a game against my own team St Johnstone and literally every single time they got the ball they looked for Dalglish . . . . and he duly obliged by screwing us. I’m sure that was what made his mind up that he had to move on.

      That’s why i’m not one you’ll find complaining about Messi’s contribution. His presence itself is huge for us – as much for the belief he brings to the rest of the team as anything else. Not saying we can’t call him for things but for me that has to weighed against the fact that if you don’t try the unlikely you seldom achieve it. Any run he goes on at some point you could say he should pass it but think of the goals we wouldn’t have been able to drool over this season if he had. If anything I think we are too careful in the last third. I’d like more shots at goal and more of the team committing to trying to go past opponents.

      I’ve just realised that I’ve spent time typing this out and that Kxevin’s review is now due. Mercy, Kxevin, give me ten minutes before posting it and consigning me to oblivion 🙂

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