A Mini-Post about the Mini-Equip

Apparently it’s still international week. Dammit. I thought if I just played FIFA11 and slept long enough yesterday and this morning, it would be time for Barça again. That’s not how it works, I guess, which is okay this time because I have a party to go to tonight that should be pretty fun. Assuming I survive my own pickup game in a couple of hours, of course (not a particularly likely outcome since I haven’t been on a field in a month and a half).

Anyway, international break doesn’t stop La Segunda from rolling right along, which means our beloved canteranos in Barça B are still playing right along. But how are they doing? Who are they doing it with? And when will they face the first team in the Copa del Rey?

The answer to that last question is easy enough: never. As a reserve/B team, they’re not allowed in any competitions that the first team also participates in. Some bemoan that as tragic because it would be fun to see JDS, Thiago, Muniesa, etc take on their idols in front of a very split home crowd (and it would be home no matter what, of course), but really, it would mean an automatic win for the first team as the B team would lie down and die in order to earn the first team a better shot at the title. Think of it like when Espanyol visits RM…

On to the other questions: La Segunda has 22 teams instead of the 20 that La Primera sports. It’s also officially known as Liga Adelante thanks to a sponsorship deal, so if you hear that in the press, that’s why. But you won’t hear me use it because I also don’t call La Liga/La Primera the Liga BBVA. Because I also don’t call it Quicken Loans Arena (or even The Q), I call it Gund, like I still call it The Jake–hell, I still call it Comiskey, even Shea despite the fact that it’s been replaced. I still call the CVS in my hometown “Revco” but I think that’s cause I’m not entirely with it. So anyway, it’s the Segunda for me and there are 22 teams in it, one of which is Barcelona B.

Today marks the beginning of Jornada 7 for the second division, meaning there have been 18 points up for grabs. Real Betis, Celta de Vigo, and Rayo Vallecano have all earned 15 of them, making them 1-2-3 in the standings. The top 2 teams at the end of the season get automatic promotion while spots 2-6 battle it out in a playoff. Barça B currently sits in 7th with a record of 12pts from 4W-0D-2L (8GA, 9GF). Remember, as much as we’re rooting for Barça B to win and have a great season, they cannot be promoted to the first division (and, in fact, if the first team is relegated, the B team cannot jump them and as such would be relegated to the next level).

The team’s best match so far–score-wise–was the 2-0 defeat of Elche, though the 2-1 over 6th-place Xerez was pretty good too (and I watched that one). The two losses haven’t been good: 2-0 at Cordoba last weekend and 5-1 at Cartagena on September 11. If you thought the first team had Catalan National Day doldrums, you missed that thrashing to put things in perspective (I know I did).

So more than half of the team’s goals allowed came from that loss at Cartagena who have scored a grand total of 8 goals this season. That’s bad. And shouldn’t be repeated. Manager Luis Enrique has said he thinks his team can beat anyone in the league, but not if they play like that.

Extremely quick stats:

Leading goalscorer: Jonathan Soriano (3)
Most cards: Martin Montoya (2)

This Sunday Barça B plays CD Tenerife at 3pm at the Mini-Estadi. Because Tenerife was in the top flight last year, you’d expect them to be doing pretty well, but they’re actually in last place in the league with just 1 point from 6 matches. 4GA, 12GF suggests why. You can webstream it if you’d like to get your Barça fix and, if you’re super into it, volunteer to run a liveblog and I’ll gladly set it up for you.

Personally, I’m rooting for Alcorcón (currently 9th) to get promoted to the Primera, not simply because of the RM debacle last year (Madrid, cabron, saluda al Alcorcón!), but also because they have never been in the first division. In fact, this is their first year in the Segunda. So that’d be a great fairy tale to see and we could all yell Alcorconazo chants during their two matches. Also, please get or make me one of those Alcorconazo t-shirts. They’re the bee’s knees in trees with fleas. Geez.

By Isaiah

Isaiah is a co-founder and lead writer for Barcelona Football Blog. He currently lives in the greater New York City area with his wife and daughter.

75 comments

  1. They should organize a yearly “fun” match between the A and B teams at the Camp Nou. I bet it would be a sellout.

    1. i think the Gamper trophy match should be a matchn between a mix of A and B players. That would be fun

  2. Hell, it’s about time!
    Finally a post about Barca B. You mixed up GA and GF for Barca and Tenerife, right?

    I’m also rooting for Alcorcon, but I don’t mind to see Barca B finishing in the top6 either. Consequently, Alcorcon would even reach the play-offs if they finish 7th.

    Would be great if someone posted the squad for our match against Tenerife, I really wonder how many players we lose due to U21 Euro Play-Offs (which will start in 4h with the home leg against Croatia, btw).

  3. Inernational week so boring…This was fun though
    *http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NDdnp2WQIXY&feature=player_embedded#!

  4. nice post, good work Isiah
    actually EE have more than espanyol as their B team they also have getafe. also they almost always beat atletico DE Madrid (both home and away) and we almost always lose to the rojiblancos (except for this year)

  5. any one know where a feed of the Spain U21 can be found. and what time the game is. ive read that its at 12:30 but i have no clue what time zone this would be in.

    1. The feed at atdhe doesn’t seem to be working, but this one is:

      *http://livesport1.info/tv1.html

  6. Alcoron is terrible. Forget about the Alcoronazo, most players, fans and everyone are all Madrid fans and there would be a huge lack of atmosphere at their games.

    Betis has to go up because they got great fans, same as Rayo, with their leftwing nutters. Third team I don’t care, but Betis and Rayo are teams the league needs.

  7. Mmh… Netherlands lost at home 3-1, Spain is also one goal down to Croatia :/ Crazy U21 play-offs!

    1. Sorry, a friend of mine wanted to test my nerves, it’s actually the A national team of Croatia that is leading 1-0 (against Israel)… 🙂

  8. Thiago is too nice. What an assist for Adrian. And Spain concede right after. Anyone watching?

  9. Thiago set up the goal but then croatia scored from kickoff, i literally blinked and they equalised.SMH.

    1. Coz he aint wearing No.9 or anything close to it.
      Give him xavis No.6 and see wat happens.
      But thiago definitely has it – lots of it!

  10. do you know the line-up of spain U21?except tiago who else of barca play??great post btw!!

    1. I don’t know, he looks average to me every time I watch him play. Mostly safe, nothing too creative.

  11. we will need tiago soon.i believe xavi must have rest in some “easy” games.his injury is not a joke.

    1. For once I totally agree with you! I think Thiago is ready and I think we need him now.

    2. I’ve always felt that JDS plays safer/Xavi style rather than Thiago who is more daring/Iniesta. So if we needed a spark in midfield, I would put Thiago in but if we need to rest Xavi, then it’s JDS.

    3. I don’t know but something is wrong with xavi and he may have to rest. It scares me a lot, you know… mothereffing X-A-V-I. But anyway if things are going like this I’d love to see iniesta+thiago+busi for some harmful ball possesion (also masche or keita in the back), but this kid Thiago has to play, no need to pull the brakes with him. Also Iniesta sometimes plays in the wing and then it can be Andres with keita+thiago+busi for some more muscle and positional hole-filling. It really looks like thiago will get more minutes this year, we need even more sharpness in attack and thiago is really a hell of an offensive mid, like you said more daring. IMO thiago can just sneak inside the team and do his thing no need for much adaptation while JDS is more of a commander kind of player, little by little game by game season by season he gets inside the team and viceversa like xavi did… although every player is different and the movement without the ball xavi has won’t ever be matched 😉 What I like the most if that both JDS and Thiago have a hell of a shot, something none of xaviniesta has. And besides if teams know us so well, not only tactically but also personally as players just put there some new elements, they are young but have to get their playing minutes somewhere in primera division. If we didn’t sign anyone Thiago and JDS have to play some real games, not only la copa or sub in la liga or champions in the 70th minute. What time better than just now? I feel they could have played much more last season with the 1st team. Also Nolito, if bojan keeps like that that we have to look for other options in the attack.

  12. anyone knows what happen to granero?that came to my mind when jnice talked about parejo.mourinio is a good coach but i can.t understand how in E.E accept the fact that he will destroy their youth players.that a big difference between them and us.imagine bojan or pedro in them.

  13. and i agree with barca96 about jds but the question is why pep don.t give him chances until now.i understand that barca b need him much more this season.i am sure if barca b after 20-25 games are safe in segunda that some players will have many chances(fontas,muniesa,romeu,rochina)

  14. and something that make me start believe that a transfer in winter maybe is gonna happen.EMD have suarez in front and an interview with him who said that”barca is the best team,i can play left,right or as a nine”xmm..something smell here!

  15. I’m sure Pep realised when Ibra left that there was a hole in our depth that would have to be filled so it’s no surprise that the Suarez rumours are resurfacing. However, he has Thiago and JDS available so if he isn’t using one or other of them there is a reason in his mind.

    We’ve been here before with young players. Unless you’re Messi you don’t just slot into the best club side in the world. As Kxevin has imo rightly said about Bojan, once you’re in the side we can’t make allowances if you can’t hack it ( not giving up on Bojan yet btw). Bojan and GDS were brought in recklessly, Pedro came in for his limited minutes and outperformed all expectations resulting in a place but may well find it harder now in his second season. You can do a lot more harm than good by pitching someone in for full games at a time when we can’t afford more dropped points. Not to mention that you build their expectations about being a first team player and they get itchy feet when you can’t deliver that constant first team time.

    Our priority just now must be to get the front line working well and get the mids a bit more offensive in terms of breaking into the box and shooting. I think there have been signs of that happening.

    Not against either of the young ones mentioned – they will be our future I’m sure but let’s not get ahead of ourselves.

  16. Everyone thinks that only JDS can operate like Xavi, but that isn’t true. Like I said before, Thiago is very versatile, and he can be different things when the situation calls for it. During the summer for Spain U19, he operated deeper and was their “Xavi”. When he has to play it safe and just keep the ball moving, he can do that better and quicker than JDS from what I’ve seen. They are both good players, but if Xavi is out and Pep wanted to play one of the two, right now it would be Thiago no question.

    1. Agree, the only quality i can see jds having over thiago is his workrate and general willingness to get stuck in.

  17. However, I wouldn’t mind bringing Klose in during the winter. Now that’s a plan B! The only problem is that he wants to leave Bayern for a place where he can play regularly.

    1. HA! It’s true! I love Klose, but he is definitely better on the international level than the club one.

    2. Playing in Spain is considered international to him since he has never played club football outside Germany.

    3. I start to consider Llorente as a long term option for us, I’d love to see him in blaugrana in winter but that would be respectful to Bilbao and all that. he’s great, really skilled for the size and strength he has, the vasc drogba 😀

    1. i dont know about nolito. in the game the other day what did he do that was so great? do a couple moves to spring to the end line? take a point blank zero angle shot at the keeper?

      yeah he looks hungry, but i cant remember anything in his play that made him look like he was on the same page as his teamates

    2. He’s 23 years old. He was making his debut for the A team. There was no pressure on him, so he was relaxed and tried to play his game. Bojan gets nervous when he gets the ball, and His place in the A team is secured to an extent (even as a sub) which makes him somehow less motivated. Nolito had to impress and make his presence felt.

      Bojan has talent. He plays great when he gains confidence. Like Late Last Season. In Other times like Early last season he doesn’t play that well. He should be Confident all the time !

    3. No way could you describe Bojan as “not motivated”. If anything its the opposite. Not even sure he doesn’t have confidence. It’s just that at the moment things aren’t going for him.

    4. I didn’t say he is not motivated. I said he’s LESS motivated than Barca B players. They get a couple of minutes through the whole season to prove themselves. They play their hearts out during the time they’re on the pitch.

  18. U guys have gt to stop saying this. Bojan has far more responsibilty and pressure in da team than any of those kids (thiago, nolito etc) have eva known

    just look back to bojans first seasons to see hw playing w/o pressure can do to u.

    1. i thought this was on @3:30 eastern for some reason.

      *http://atdhe.net/25581/watch-barcelona-b-vs-tenerife

  19. great win!congrats to everyone for that team.it s so big thing that our b team play in the second devision of spain and look in the eyes teams who are more experience.with 19years old players.

  20. in other news:tevez said that he is not enjoying football!busi wants a rise in his contract and ramzi after reading his article in football mood is a fan of adebayior!haha!just kidding!

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