Barca v Racing Santander LiveBlog

It’s here, and we’re ready. So get all that negativity out of your systems. Because we’re on, and our club needs the positive karma.

By Kxevin

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.

99 comments

  1. Some said we were looking at Robinho.No robinho, Juan Mata is the man. Can drop Messi into mf to help or replace Iniesta/Xavi, while a forward line of Mata/Villa/Pedro overruns defences.

    1. I’m not really convinced by either of them.
      Luis Suarez would be a good option, and afaik he is allowed to play in the CL after the groupstage (which we shall pass without him^^).

    2. Funny, Suarez doesn’t convince me. Mata is pacey,great understanding with Villa,terrific technique and is a great finisher. Plus he left footed(which would give us real width. Finally hes Spanish and a former Madrid Youth

    3. I would take Mata or Suarez over Robinho. Dont think we will get anyone though. I think we have our squad for the season, but who knows, with the way things are going we could sign Robinho for 30m

    1. Love this lineup. God cant wait for the game to start. Waiting for a ton of Golazo’s.

    2. Puyol was supposed to be in the starting lineup, but it seems he felt some discomfort in his thigh. I don’t think it’s too serious.

    1. These three people are interchangeable in their front line positions. That is the beauty of this lineup. Let me just enjoy Messi and Iniesta’s movement off the ball.

  2. One of the most critical questions the team faces this season is whether or not Eric Abidal can play with quality at CB.

    If he can then the back line will be solid. The squad has great depth at full back. As long as Abidal can move centrally the squad will also have strong depth at CB. Abidal slots in as the 4th CB and Fontas can then be integrated appropriately as the 5th CB.

    Abidal however has struggled repeatedly playing CB, especially with his positioning. The risk of experimenting with a CB is higher than at any other position.

    Pep’s plan for the back line over this long season greatly depends on Abidal. It’s a good idea to give him more league experience there against a relatively weak opponent rather than injecting him into a major match when needed.

  3. btw anybody on here as happy as I am about Inter’s loss to Atletico Madrid? They can’t get 6 trophies like we did 🙂

  4. I’m guessing this is because we don’t expect a lot of defensive work so fair enough try out Abidal as CB but it still worries me

  5. Wow, that was a sloppy game. Can any Ibra-hater tell me how many times our 40m man was offside? Great goals, but definitely several steps back from the SuperCopa Second Leg. And now International Break, right?

  6. Definitely a better performance than last year’s opening game, and an away win is always nice too.
    The team has started where they left last year, and the development of players like Maxwell and Busquets is clearly better than any additions in the market, the midfield and front line kept changing positions like it was half of the season, rust? I don’t think so.
    Keita’s performances are getting better and better that I’m beginning to feel he’s a cantera product
    The exquisite back heel from Villa deserved a better finish from Messi, the two feel like they’ve been playing for centuries together.

  7. Guardiola: “Ibrahimovic? This is not the time or the place. I wish him all the luck in the rest of his career.” (barcastuff)

    Well, I guess we’ll have to wait till Pep retires and writes a book to find out what really happened. I’m done with this now.

  8. An effortless victory without much glory, I’d say. Can’t wait for the next match.
    International break after the very first playday REALLY sucks 🙁

    Well, at least Barca B plays next weekend against CD Xerez.

    And now, good luck to Mallorca, steal some points from the EE!

  9. Come on Pep, now is the perfect time and place since with the international break coming up we will have two weeks two digest and accept your explanation!

  10. Off-topic but Milan is KILLING Lecce. Their movement, pressure, chemistry is on point. Ronnie is having the game of his life. Score is 3-0 at the half.

    1. Milan is ballin’. Ronnie is still great, forget the haters. Pato and Ronnie together is pure gold.

    2. Just so you know, I’m pretty sure Lecce just got promoted…

      Milan is my Italian team, so to speak, so I’d love for them to do well, but they have a habit of flattering to deceive. And Pato getting injured always screws them up because 1) he’s boss and 2) he’s their fastest player (and probably the youngest starter).

      Hopefully, Ibra (who has not taken the high road Txignasty style) helps them out and they have a solid season, winning the Scudetto and kicking EE butt.

  11. Never expected Pep to go into details. He just wants the whole thing over with.

    Pretty decent performance. Not as good at the Supercup but then again, that would have been difficult to repeat.

    Not too concerned about the Villa offsides. They were very tight.

  12. If he wants the thing to be over with Barça should give clarity. Mallorca almost scored right before halftime. Score is still 0-0.

  13. Off topic, but EE really look like shit. Remember, this is a league where 2-3 losses will doom you, and Mo has never been the coach of a team than won 95% of their games, lots of draws and a decent amount of losses at Inter. The only reason he didn’t s suffer for those was because Roma, Juve and ACM all choked! Having said all of that Ronaldo will get a penalty in the 92 min and the will pull it out of thier ass, even if they are void of any ideas offensively.

  14. Milan are going to win the group against Madrid lol. The new trident of Ibra, Ronni and Pato will be amazing. Pato is the perfect striker to pair with BANGS.

    1. Don’t get blinded by a sinlge match from AC Milan. I still think that the whole defensive part of their team is too weak to compete for any title.

  15. yeah i remember how frustrating last season was – EE playing horribly and winning at the last moment

    1. Yeah, but they attacked well last season and could almost turn it on in an instant. With Mo holding his boys back for 70 minutes each game, and Madrid not playing a free flowing game, I dont see them pulling out games in the last seconds this year. Overall if Mo stifles his own players, like he did at Inter, we win the league by 10 points, if he lets them play a bit, al la Chelsea, we only win the league by four points. Lastly, goal difference will not be an issue with us this season, we will be + 30 on madrid, and Athletico may be +15 on the E.E.

  16. Its the only answer Pep could give really. Whether anyone will let it lie is another matter. .

    i enjoyed the match. We were a bit funky in places but moved the ball well enough. The effort and desire were there for all to see until we went three up.

    Sods law that after talking about a smallish squad we pick up two injuries in the first match. Hope Xavi’s is a tactical one to avoid the international but he’s not the sort. whatever, you don’t mess with an achilles problem. Leave him out for a couple of weeks.

    1. Puyol before the game. He was supposed to start before the game, but Pique took his place. Good thing too, I have to admit.

      Puyol that lacks a step or 3 and CB Abidal? Uff…

    2. Well, personally, I think those “injuries” really were tactical ones. A case of our team saying, “Man, we really got screwed because of the Mexico friendly and now they have to go all the way to Argentina?! Let’s just say Puyi and Xavi–the older players who can’t play as many matches anymore–are injured so they get a week’s break”.

      According to Pep’s twitter, Xavi said: “My Achilles’ heels hurt. I could have go on but we decided it was better to not continue”

      Hmmmm

  17. I like this comment:
    Guardiola: “Abidal played because we’ll need to rest players during the season. He’s also very confident at the moment.”

    Against the weaker opponents, it will be crucial to not play our very best line-up, this goes for la Liga AND the CL groupstage.
    Xavi has felt slight discomfort in his Achilles heels, maybe he can stay away from international duty. That would be awesome 🙂

  18. barcastuff:

    Busquets: “Ibrahimovic? That was an issue between a player and a coach, it has been solved now.”

    lol

    1. honestly though if it was between player and coach it is only fair that Pep explains the cules what went wrong, what led to us losing so much money over Zlatan

  19. Quote from soccernet

    “Jose Mourinho will surely have to change his team in the second half? With Mesut Ozil on the bench, Real Madrid have a potential matchwinner among their subs.”

    Yes sir, having to count on the kid to do something because you only have 3 shots, 1 on goal and none from inside the box….Stay classy Madrid.

  20. I’m debating whether or not I should watch the EE match. They tend to score when I do…

    1. When I do watch is what I meant. I guess it didn’t go without saying.

      Looks like they’re going for the “play like crud and score at the death” tactic. Sigh.

    1. As much as I’d love too, you can’t make assumptions on a whole season based on one game. And ONE Estadi is a tough place to play at. We somehow didn’t lose there last season.

      Slow start is inevitable, but it’s good for us if they drop points early…

      Not gonna happen though. They always find a way to score.

    2. Kari, I understand what your saying, but for me it is a combination of all the new faces, and the bus that Mo drove onto the pitch. I don’t think that a semi negative team stands a chance against us in the long hull.

    3. what bus are you talking about ? how can a line up of lass alonso canales di maria ronaldo and higuain be called a bus ? the only DM in that line up is Lassana Diarra how exactly is that a bus ? do you anything about football at all ?

    1. Actually, if the Liga ended today we’d come in second behind Sevilla.

      To be serious though, it’s a long season and we have a really tough game away to Atleti coming up…

  21. I have work to do, but two favorable results in one day makes me want to break out the bubbly!

  22. Madrid makes my day when they don’t win. It’s sad, but true. And who cares if we lost our first match of the 08/09 season… we at least played well.

    My weekend is complete.

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