Club news, December 27, 2010

Posted without comment, just to catch everyone up.

Johann Cruijff was one of the instigators of the Eto’o/Ibrahimovic deal, he reveals in his El Periodico column: “We convinced [Laporta] of the sale of Eto’o, and the wisdom of the change to Ibrahimovic, and when we realized that we were wrong, we supported the sale of the Swedish player. And we also supported the purchase of Villa. We took a step back to make two steps forward.”

–Speaking of Cruijff, he is claiming that the club owes his Foundation EUR100,000. The dispute between he and Sandro Rosell continues.

Nolito says that if EE wants to buy him, he will go there.

Luis Suarez says that he wants to go to Spain, but did not specify a club.

–The Internet’s most popular Spanish athlete is Andres Iniesta. The remaining 5 were Iker Casillas, David Villa, Rafa Nadal and Fernando Alonso.

–Under consideration by UEFA is the club’s petition to move the UNICEF logo to the back of the shirt. The matter is pending.

–Finally, the club has said that is it coming to America in 2011, but that dates and opponents are unconfirmed.

Categorized as Team News

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.


  1. Welcome back, Kxevin!

    Do you have a source for that Nolito quote?

    And when Cruyff says “we” supported buying/selling Ibrahimovic, is that the royal we, or who else does he mean besides himself?

    1. Here’s the Nolito quote: *

    2. The headline focuses on the Madrid quote, but he also responds to Benfica rumors and general questions about his place at Barcelona. He seems aware that his time at Barcelona is up and he provides a pretty mature and professional response to the situation. Whoever asked him about playing at Madrid was just trying to trap him, and Nolito did the best a young player can do when a journalist starts playing games.

      I think the consensus around here is that Nolito is not good enough to beat out other rising La Masia talent. Therefore, I can only wish him the best and hope he keeps up with the polite and appreciative comments about Barcelona. I’ll take his honest comment about playing for Madrid over Ibrahimovic’s trash talking any day.

    3. Thanks, both of you. I like Nolito, but sadly I agree that he will never make the first team as anything more than a benchwarmer. I wouldn’t like him to go to Madrid, but he doesn’t have the same roots with Barcelona that someone like Bojan does, so there is no real reason why not. I wish him luck whatever happens.

      Unfortunately I think the next few years will see a major exodus of young La Masia talent. The fact is, there is so much talent there and only a few places available in either the Primera or Segunda teams. Bright young talents like JDS or Vasquez may have no option but to leave.

    4. It looks like the Eto’o/Ibrahimovic decision was made by Txiki and Guardiola with input from Cruyff. Or so Cruyff says in the article:

      A ‘we’ that includes Txiki, Guardiola, and Cruyff might still be considered a ‘royal we’.

    1. a history of barca shirts:


      i tried posting this earlier but it didn’t go through.

  2. Can anyone tell me where I can watch the arse0 v chelsea game online ? Villa won USSA’s athlete of the year too.

    1. Cheers, I went to the pub for it in the end. Arsenal will be eaten alive by the mighty Barca.

  3. Probably not confirmed yet, but here are tentative dates:

    30 July: Manchester United v FC Barcelona (Washington)
    3 August: AC Milan v FC Barcelona (Miami)
    6 August: America of Mexico v FC Barcelona (Dallas)

    1. 19:00 their time is what I read— so that would be 1:00 EST I think.

      Arsenal game ready to start—Cesc is starting—should I say ooooooooh!—-no I won’t.

  4. If Nolito wants to audition for other clubs at Madrid, let him..

    And its always nice to see Arsenal with a spine..

  5. Damn. 3-0 Arsenal which is great for football but that might mean curtains for Ancellotti which in turn means a bid to get Pep at the end of the season. Let’s get him tied up now.

    1. I was thinking about the possibility of Pep going to England and I just don’t see it happening. He could not play his system at either Chelsea or ManU and they wouldn’t give him enough time to bring in his own guys. I don’t think he would leave anyways. If anything, he would take a more handsoff position for a bit to rest and then come back as a coach when possible

    2. I don’t really believe it myself, Stowe, but be in no doubt Pep will be a target if he’s not signed up soon . Abramovic is a huge fan of his and could easily fund a raid on the top players in most clubs. He does also seem to want to move Chelsea over to a better style of play and the notion of a Masia-like academy.

      Pep is being naive if he doesn’t see that his stalling over the new offer will lead to a growing interest in his situation. I don’t want to see that becoming a distracting factor and tbh I don’t know what Pep is hanging about for. Why hasn’t he signed already if he’s happy here? I’ve never understood year by year contacts as they are a recipe for continual unrest and speculation. To my mind he has everything here and as someone famous once said – if you think the pressure at the top is bad you should try the pressure at the bottom !

      However, maybe it’ll be sorted at his meal with Rosell. Here’s hoping.

  6. Kxevin, I have been holding back, but I can no longer. Your usual sterling prose is tarnished by the following, “The dispute between he and Sandro Rosell continues.” It should be “The dispute between Sandro Rosell and him continues.” Indirect pronouns always follows the proper name in subordinate clauses. Excuse the school-marmishness, but I feel that you set an example of good sports writing and I needed to chime in! Happy Holidays to everyone, commentators and posters on this wonderful blog.

    1. What better way to welcome Kxevin back than someone disagreeing with what he has written.. 😛 (No offense cliu)

      I’m wondering how much time it’ll take for someone to call him a biased idiot 😀

    2. For what it’s worth ( and at risk of seeming pedantic or making a point ) your comma before “but” is redundant.

      Welcome back, Kxevin 🙂

  7. Any deal Txiki was involved in should be investigated throughly I would suggest. It’s only my opinion but I think he robbed the club blind in cahoots with traffic.

  8. KXEVIN!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    *cue singing chorus*

    –Arsenal’s no.6–Kosielny is it?– is an absolute désastre. From Ligue 2 to Ligue 1 to EPL, poor guy looks out of his depth…

    Dunno what happened to Chelsea (perhaps the sacking of the assistant manager?), but if they can’t exploit that Arsenal defense, shaky and wobbly as it was, they are in a serious crisis.

    And I love it.


    1. That being said, we are gonna have a field day against their back four.

      Clichy aint gonna know what hit him when Alves and Pedro are tiki takaing around him!

    1. Yeah, but Djourou wasn’t too shabby. I’d say if they had him and Vermaelen as CBs, Sagna at RB and Gibbs? as LB…

      Well, I still don’t think it’ll withstand us, but it’ll be a massive improvement 😉

      –Caught by CAPTCHA again. I forgot how much I dislike it. Maybe the ‘submit comment’ button could be under the CAPTCHA, so that we’ll remember.

    2. arsenal looked their usual shaky selves but they really grew into the match. i still think we steamroll over them.

      is it just me, or can you not post urls anymore? does this have anything to do w/my posting nsfw links? :/

  9. It’s done! Although my blood still boils when I see the last half hour…

    Might as well repost the whole thing for those who are missing parts (if there are any)

    Arsenal vs Barcelona

    First Half

    Part 1: .
    Part 2: .
    Part 3: .
    Part 4: .
    Part 5: .
    Part 6: .

    Second Half

    Part 1: .
    Part 2: .
    Part 3: .
    Part 4: .

    On Ramzi’s website, the manita with English commentary has been uploaded.

    1. this’ll come in handy tomorrow at work, kari. thanks!

      so, has barca’s pressing game finally rubbed off on wenger?


      we’ll see soon enough how well these guys keep this up.

    2. Now after watching all that one must watch the Messi show in the next leg!! Highlights and Interviews here *

    3. Hi, can I get the link for Ramzi’s website? I haven’t been able to find a link for the manita that’s actually usable.

  10. I am KXevin’s biggest fan. I was silently pulling for him and his silent X during the recent spat, but I DO take Jim’s correction of my comma seriously. : ) Seriously though, I thought KXevin was WAY too hard on himself. An apology sufficed.

    1. Even when things are posted without comment, people find stuff. Not sure what to do, except to suggest that you get your hands on a Chicago Tribune stylebook. It’s the manual I use, and the one that my fingers default to when writing. We have just now switched to AP style, except in cases where we adhere to archaic spellings and word usages.

      Journalism style books often disagree with English sticklers, just as newspapers aren’t written for said individuals.

      We have incorrectly spelled words, typos and other grammatical inconsistencies that permeate this space. But it’s a newspaper style vs school learning style that brings ’em out. Thought it was safe to come back.

    2. Only joking, Cliu 🙂

      I just winced when I saw his first post back being picked up for bad grammar.

  11. hey guys…does anyone have a nice documentary film about barca in english:D
    centering around the treble might be good:D

  12. boooh to cruiff and selling etoo! xD I’ll always think he screwed up big time on that, after winning the triplete and displaying the best football the man behind the scenes thinks we should redesign the team, why? Still don’t understand it, it had to be because of etoo’s contract or something other than thinking than ibra would suit the team better than etoo because if was the latter, he showed he doesn’t know it all when talking about footy. Bad BAD call, thank god villa was still available the next year and we could buy him. ibra=caca

    can’t wait to see affelay in action he looks very fast and “goal oriented”

  13. Maybe a tad harsh, Poipoi?

    As regular readers will know I’ve never been a fan of Ibra but I have to say I wasn’t good enough to spot what was going to happen. I had this vision of a tall, hustling CF getting on the end of all our good work, offering a real aerial threat and chasing his butt off. Goes to show i hadn’t watched a lot of Ibra in action, eh? – only highlights. Not sure that the club could’ve done much differently given the haste with which we had to operate. I was up for Plan B. My only surprise was that it took people so long to see it wasn’t working in a team balance kind of way although I suppose we don’t really know the point at which Pep decided it wasn’t. What I would say is that I’d trust the instincts of both Pep and Cruyff to safeguard our style of play which is the most important thing to me.

    As I understand it, the decision was made to offload Eto’o partly for financial but also harmony issues as Pep wanted a clean slate. (Eto’o was always a little bit of a loose cannon mouth wise imo, although a great player for us). Villa was our first thought and when that didn’t work out we turned to Ibra. The rest is history which none of us really want to reopen. I would say, ‘though, that I don’t go along with those who say he cost us the CL or that he won us the Clasico. The CL, imo, was down to bad defending in the first leg for whatever reason and like or loath him he did score a reasonable amount of goals for us and has gone on to do well (so far) in Milan. Can’t excuse his behaviour since leaving us.

    It’ll be interesting to see how he does in the business half of the season – but then you could say the same of us 🙂

    1. Jim makes a good point about OUR performance. I don’t know if we’ve been on our best form recently, which probably explains why some names that we used to see in these parts, we don’t any longer. We need to get back to being family.

      Eto’o, Ibrahimovic, the state of the world, whatever, simply is. There is no right or wrong, and there can never be in a subjective debate. It just is. It happened. Now we move on.

      And hey, instead of debating the points of my grammar, how do people feel about the Cruijff matter? Greece Barca, for all the stick that he takes about the readability of his comments, had a view when he commented in a previous post that Cruijff shouldn’t be airing the club’s dirty laundry in public. That, to me, is more the point than how the sentence was structured. Does the fact that English is not Ramzi’s first language make his tactical comments any less valuable?

      More importantly, a request, simply put: Lay off. I’m wounded right now, and don’t need my scabs picked at. I don’t blow anybody else crap, and deserve the same courtesy. What’s good-natured to someone is, in the black-and-white, un-nuanced world of typeface fonts, personal to someone else.

      If you disagree with something I have to say, tell me why. “You just love/hate so and so” is worthless, because it’s a debate that doesn’t have any factual relevance or foundation. So how can it be discussed?

      We’re here for Barca. We should never, ever forget that. Our team is playing about the most beautiful football in its history right now. We should rise to that level of performance. This space feels different now. It will never be The Offside, just as The Offside was irrevocably changed during the Eto’o debate. Change, like life, just is. What defines us is how we roll with it.

    2. what? ramzi isn’t a native english speaker? wow! I love the writing on this blog. No, it’s not perfect, but i must say that even the non-native speakers, like Greece Barca, have better posts than some native commenters i’ve read on other blogs. Thanks for the great writing and input guys

    3. HA. LOL That would be me. When i think the comment in my head it makes perfect sense but once I press the submit button I sound like an idiot. Watch….seee?

  14. And before I forget, registration is being discussed. Yes, this means no more Captcha, and no more dancing about posting Web links. Any serious fors or againsts should probably be aired now.

    1. Cue the restrictions on being socis below 14 jokes..

      I can see many benefits of membership, just make sure that registration isn’t a hassle

    2. Registration seems good idea. Especially as most of us do post regularly and as long as the browser remembers user name/p/w, it should not be a problem.

    3. yea, I would appreciate registration. That would be fun. But i’m about to start traveling for a few months. so if I miss out on a registration window, it would be sad to miss out 🙁

  15. From Barcastuff :

    Tweet Puyol: “My best friend Javi Perez joins Barça. Very happy to train with him every day…”

    Do I know this person? Footballer?

    1. a quick google search says he’s a spanish defender. plays for Persijap Jepara. never heard of him though.

      I would agree that we need more CB depth, although Abidal has been doing well there

  16. Yes on registration.

    Javier Perez… i remember that name from Puyol’s twitter-following list

    #javipobla javi perez
    Poder entrenar con mi amigo de toda la vida @Carles5puyol serà rememorar nuestra infancia.

    From what i understand, he’s like having a free training with his lifelong mate… and nothing more.


  17. About Javi Perez,

    note: today is “holy innocents’ day” in spain, the local equivalent to april fool’s day, a day for pranks.

    via Pep @ Barcastuff..

  18. Last time I posted I said that for every goal that Ibra scored it cost Barca 2 possibly 3 goals. I said that the canteros wouldn’t be able and shouldn’t be put in the position to lead the team in significant games. I was told essentially to fuck off and that I was to be censored.

    I’ve played and coached youth soccer for 30 years, traveling to every major tournament in the US including regional ODP finals.

    I’ve watched every game possible of Barca for many years now. I continue to be in awe. I suspect many people who visit this site have similar and substantially more experience in the game.

    This is easily the best english speaking blog for Barca fans. Kevin is at the center of it with the tremendous amount of work and effort and writing talent he puts into his articles.

    He also never ceases to offend with his crude remarks, denigrating assessments, nasty counter attacks on opposing views, but most of all from his high and mighty view point as he considers the best players, team and coaches of our generation and quite probably of all time.

    If you are wounded it comes from your own arrogance. Working yourself into a lather doesn’t make you right. You could be really great with a little humility.

    Now you return with a mea culpa but add that you want every one to register? For what purpose? Cordial arguments are the center of makes the discussions interesting. Not lapdog tongue waggers saying how awesome your crap is. And especially not with the most malignant mouth here holding the censure button!

    1. um…dude…this was supposed to be constructive and help us get back to “normal” how????

      Can we all just get back to discussing this team?!!!!!!!!

    2. For an old dude (lady?) you seem kinda angry. How bout retirement or something you seem like you need it.

    3. kxevins in a tough place. the blog thrives because of his incessant interjection of strong opinions. they get a reaction, which makes for lots of blog activity. sometimes i think it is more of a journalistic tactic than what he really thinks. could be wrong. but journalists make a name by having strong, often polarizing opinions… frankly, by being big Egos. yes, it is amazing and frustrating how he finds fault with possibly the best team of all time, considering, by his own admission, that he has never played soccer in his life. on the other hand, it would be boring and a less interesting blog if he didnt. maybe.

    4. Kxevin has strong opinions, true, but they are not polarizing in my view, just strong opinions not any stronger than our own opinions sometimes. Anyway that is not the issue the problem is when people are disrespectful like some of those on my ignore list. Like Kxevin said it is not that it is bad to disagree with him it is just that if one does one should have something tangible rather than ambiguous accusations of favoritism and “being on a high horse”

      Personally I’m glad Kxevin finds faults in this team even when they play fabulously cause you know who does the same? The pepster.

      By the way this is not exactly directed at you BallBeav but rather in conjunction with your comment.

    5. “considering, by his own admission, that he has never played soccer in his life.”

      I think one needs to be aware of this fact before “lashing out” at Kxevin.

    6. So, let me summarize what you just posted. First you say that this the the best English speaking Barca blog there is, yet those who say how awesome Kxevin is, hence the blog, since he is at the center of it, are lapdog tongue waggers.. Which means you are one too..

      See, if you find Kxevin ‘offending’ you should probably take it up at that time with solid, insightful arguments.. Its his space, he is allowed to say whatever he wants, and that is one of the many reasons that make this blog the best, as you concede..

      And lastly, I don’t understand these kind of posts.. You accuse us of being arrogant and want cordial discussions yet you yourself use terms like ‘lapdog tongue waggers’, ‘malignant mouth’ etc. You say working oneself into a lather doesn’t make you right, shouldn’t the same hold for you? Hypocrisy much?

      Lastly, if you think the registration thing is about censorship, you are way off the mark.. Please research more before commenting and you won’t be told the essentials..

    7. “First you say that this the the best English speaking Barca blog there is”

      It seems to me that statement speaks more about the (poor) quality of the rest rather than paying a compliment to this one.

    8. This! ^^^^

      We ain’t the best. We’re good, but there are many things that we lack, and might never gain, frankly. I think of the XTC song, “Mayor of Simpleton.”

      We have very good writing, strong points of view and a knowledgeable family of commenters to keep us honest. That’s a good start. We’re working hard on the rest.

    9. I’m taking that as a no to Registration then?

      Seriously, that would be an issue if it were the case that the mods started pulling registrations if someone offended them but do you actually think they would? The success of a site such as this comes from its participants. I’ve always found Kxevin and the rest to be respectful of opposing views while not necessarily shifting ground – which is their perogative.

      My issue is with your tone. Are you making a serious point about the pitfalls of registration? If so, then it is lost in the gratuitous swipe at Kxevin. Such intemperate language is exactly what many of us would like to lose completely on this site and will, I fear, only lead to a rash of counter posts. I like to think this wasn’t your intention but its difficult to look beyond that as the motive for a post like this.

    10. Owwwwwww nooooooo u didnttttttt…… get em’ boys, defend our dear leader!!!!!!

      Ps. ur a douch.

    11. I’m with you on the first passage. Felt very much the same myself.

      At the beginning, I had overestimated Zlatan’s potential “in air” and, more importantly, the staff’s ability to change his mindset, increase his work rate and acceleration. Towards the end of the season I have realized the mistake I made.

      Not the only one to come to terms with this, few here tried to share the “revelation”. They were greeted with a steady dose of “it’s only his first season in the system”, “intangibles he is (supposedly) bringing” and hair short from a guarantee that “next year he’ll score 40 goals”. That was a general sentiment here.

      Some were loudly reminding us how many goals Zlatan scored. Note: the number per se is not enough. We need to look at the number of high probability scoring opportunities it took him to get there is what matters. 21/35 is not as same as 21/50.

      That being said, I think you are either off mark or wrong with the tone on the last three passages.

  19. Anyone got a good link for the Catalunya friendly? If I can’t get a Barca fix soon Im gonna (yes I know it should say “going to”, English majors) burst. Since I can’t get a full Barca fix, I’ll take a small dose of Puyi, VV, Busi and CT (I guess that would make this game the equivalent of Barca methadone).

  20. Boy, they are really missing Xavi in the midfield!

    Valdes is captain. 😀

    Love the kits, I want one!

  21. *

    here’s another one in case it crapped out on you.

  22. Well I guess we know where Bojangles stands on the snood issue. 😛

    ‘nother one:


  23. TotalBarca with a host of links in case


    1. victor valdes, puyol, busquets, bojan, sergio garcia, maybe verdu? i’m not really sure who else. i’ve been trying to search for the lineup too.

  24. Catalonia lineup: Valdés, Damià, Puyol, Victor Ruiz, De la Bella, Busquets, Verdú, Javi Márquez, Sergio García, Coro y Bojan

  25. Here is a really nice fullscreen link to the game:


  26. Oh Bojangles. Why can’t you do this for us on a regular basis? Or is it the power of the snood?

    If so, wear it. Wear it always.

    (It could also be that it’s ‘only’ Honduras and a friendly. But this is the third year in a row he’s kick ass for Catalunya. Proud Catalan? 😛 )

    (And moltes gracies to blitzen for the link)

  27. I’m really digging both of the Catalan keepers’ kits. Can’t decide if I love the feild players’ kits; the numbers are pretty crazy.

    1. This is him saying, “See, Pep, all I need is some real playing time!”

      Also, snoods for all!

  28. mardia, this is a little late, but Ramzi’s website is here:


    Website full of badassery. And the good kind too.

    –SoMo4, I actually don’t have the CL final vs Man. Utd. on my laptop at all, so I can’t really upload it.

  29. NOOOOOOOO! I missed what ever Miguel, blitzen and SoMo4 are talking about!

    Bojan scored, didn’t he? Daaaaaaaaaaaaamn!

    But I get to see Bartra make his debut!!

    1. Not only scored, but scored beautifully from a perfectly timed run into the box. This is the Bojan we love to see.

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