Praise Messi! Alves Re-Signs

As was previously predicted on these very pages by wise, old sage Kevin, Dani Alves will re-sign with FC Barcelona tomorrow until 2015. We attempted to contact Dani, but he was too busy celebrating:

Chest Bumps!


Samba Mofo's!

Seriously though, this is fucking huge. We rarely invoke the name of the most holy Messi as an explanation around these parts, but this deserved it. It signifies a few important points. The first of which is that Alves chose to stay. Make no mistake, Dani could have easily left for much more money at Man City without blinking an eye. Numbers have yet to be released, but City could easily double what FCB can pay. That’s the oil trade yawl. He either has just settled into a good life here or he really likes the club and wants to win. I do not care which.


Secondly, this means the core nucleus of the offense is all signed until at least 2014 (Xavi has a team option for 2015). Like Nate Dogg (pours one out) and Warren G, Pep like 16 in the clip and 1 in the hole in terms of having as much talent as possible. This is not small deal because it is very clear that Pep cares more about having Dani rove forward and throw crosses or cut in than he does about having a hold-up classic 9. He likes Messi as a flase 9 and he wants to keep the team running like it is now. Make no mistake, Ibra was thrust on him, there was a reason he did not like Eto’o up there, but now, he’s got the best player in a position where he’s scoring 40+ goals a season on the regular. Alves is a key component, because as you all remember, any other player over there drops the play ridiculously.

So let’s party, and of course as Blitzen has showed us, Dani knows how to leave the party:

This ain't Kansas anymore, thank Messi, cause that state sucks
Categorized as Team News

By Luke

We calls 'em likes we sees 'em.


  1. I’ve already celebrated Dani’s renewal (even though I was sure he would renew), so I’m done celebrating. But since I got Hectored..

    Watched the first 15 minutes of Revista (I posted links in the last thread)….

    -Forgot to mention this last week when Graham brought this up, but last week Graham said Pep called Pique an idiot during a couple of his defensive lapses against Sevilla. After the Getafe match, they apparently exchanged words again b/c Pep was annoyed at how he was defending. It’s not a big deal, but it’s clear Pique needs to step up his game.

    -Guillem says that the Cesc situation is clear. Cesc will want to leave again, we will go for him again, but if Arsenal want more than we can afford, we will go for Borja Valero.

    1. The team needs a striker, a CB and a LB.

      But I’ve resigned myself to the fact that they will yet again focus on a midfielder this summer.

      Fabio Coentrao or Fernando LLorente would transform how this club can play. Coentrao would make the team almost completely unplayable.

      Valero is a terrific player. Not sure what the interest is but there seems to be some fire after the smoke. Probably just a player Pep really likes.

      It’s ironic – but Valero is a player RM should aggressively go after. He is perfect for what they need to do.

    2. Yeah, why the focus on a midfielder? Especially when Thiago will be promoted and Afellay is on the team. No clue.

      Of course this is just rumors, but like you said, there does seem to be some fire.

      I think Madrid fans in the know would like him to come back, not sure if Mourinho feels the same.

    3. @ Euler

      What does Coentrao have what Adriano or Maxwell doesn’t have? And if we were to purchase Coentrao, what do we do with Abidal/Maxwell/Adreano when he returns next season? Whom would you sell?

    4. I think a new CB is the most urgent transfer. Then, a forward, but as far as a LB is concerned, I think we’re doing pretty good with Adriano, Maxwell and Abidal. Adriano has surprised me positively.
      Coentrao would be a hell of a signing though. But if we cannot have Coentrao, I wouldn’t go for a LB at all.

  2. A couple of months ago I wasn’t too optimistic about getting this done. I really figured that economically Man City would make Dani and offer that would be prohibitive for what Barca were comfortable doing.

    It was very odd that he didn’t have a shoe deal this entire season. It now seems clear why that was. As Kevin pointed out his recent sponsorship deal signings were a real positive.

    Thank goodness its done.

    We can talk all we want about pay clusters by position, team financial structure, etc.

    Alves is simply integral to almost everything this club does. You could have someone else stand at the RB position but that wasn’t going to be a replacement in any way.

    He’s absolutely the best RB in the world and there’s no one particularly close to being able to do what he does.

    There’s a reason why Pep wanted him purchased for such a huge amount of money to begin with. Pep saw that Dani would allow him to implement a system which would give Messi freedom. And by giving him freedom he would be maximizing Messi’s impact on the game.

    It took great vision to see that possibility back when Alves was purchased for so much money.

    And Dani’s done nothing but delivered since then.

    He is one of the most unique players the game has seen over the past 30 years.

    And what particularly nice about this is that Dani is now likely going to spend the bulk of his career with the club. And that gives him the opportunity to become one of Barca’s true legendary players. And legendary in a way a player who stays for 4 years or so can’t really be.

    1. I was always sure he would resign. I just wanted the deal to get done ASAP. Enough of the talk and speculation. Especially during the business end of the season.

      He’s absolutely the best RB in the world and there’s no one particularly close to being able to do what he does.

      That’s why I get annoyed when people say, so and so is “kind of like Alves.” No they are not. He forces teams to change their tactics and switch positions of players as if he were an out and out attacker. No other fullback demands that much attention from opposing teams. And please don’t mention Maicon. That’s just a lazy comment people love to throw out when in all actuality, they probably watch very little of Maicon.

      And what particularly nice about this is that Dani is now likely going to spend the bulk of his career with the club. And that gives him the opportunity to become one of Barca’s true legendary players. And legendary in a way a player who stays for 4 years or so can’t really be.

      I like this aspect too. He probably won’t retire with the club, but he’ll definitely be described as one of the legends when people talk about Barça years from now.

    2. There are only maybe 2-3 players in the world who play similarly to Alves and they are not as talented or as useful. The next obvious in line is van der Weil, who will be great eventually, but he’s not there now.

    3. It took great vision to see that possibility back when Alves was purchased for so much money.

      And Dani’s done nothing but delivered since then.

      This, in spades. Dani is one of a kind in what he brings to his position, and Pep is one of a kind in knowing exactly how to use his skills to make the team, and especially Messi, more effective.

    4. Effin’ A right Euler…(about Dani) but how can you justify bringing in Fabio Coentrao, unless you pass on bringing in another CB, slowly traition Abidal into Puyols spot,, which in turn pons up LB. Cause fankly Fabio Coentrao > Adriano

  3. Immense news.

    While initially it seemed as if Alves would be gone sooner than later, information regarding the ongoing contract negotiations (including his signing of a sponsorship deal) left me feeling more and more optimistic that a deal would be reached between the two parties.

    Good to hear that his renewal is now official.

  4. Great news that he has re-signed. Does anyone know whether he got what he wanted or whether the club held firm? Ballague was adamant that there was no offer from City and that Barcelona knew that. However, the fact that it was concluded so soon after a great goal might suggest that the club upped its offer?

  5. Great news. He’s essential to the 4-3-3. Now please let’s start playing like we used to.

    1. Wish I knew they were arriving today. Would totally have gone to Newark to see them and get Messi’s autograph and a photo.

    2. Wow. I’m American and I feel immensely embarrassed for us. lmao. The front desk should know that the Argie NT was going to stay and if I were them, I would have a list of the roster, so you don’t have to feel stupid. And I’m guessing they also said “Messy, right?”

  6. awesome news.

    “And what particularly nice about this is that Dani is now likely going to spend the bulk of his career with the club. And that gives him the opportunity to become one of Barca’s true legendary players. And legendary in a way a player who stays for 4 years or so can’t really be.”

    mmm interesting comment. At first I was like, yeah!

    But then Rivaldo and Ronaldinho were there for 5 years, which is “4 years or so”, lol.

    Trying to think of a legend who stayed for 4 years or less….would Larsson qualify for turning the 2006 CL final in our favor?

    1. Lev-

      I was explicitly thinking of Ronaldhino and Rivaldo. Rivaldo was one of my favorite footballers of all time. And well what can you say about Ronaldhino. Incomparable albeit for too brief a time.

      But even as great as brilliant as they were – I think a player of Alves’ caliber who is with the club for 7 or even 8 years will have a different legacy than even Rivaldo or Ronnie.

      Maybe that’s just me. It just feels different.

      But that also could be the specific case with Dani. With this contract there’s a real chance that he will play more for games for Barca now than he did for Sevilla and I think that makes a major difference in his particular legacy.

    2. I have never been that big of a fan of Rivaldo – an admirer of his AWESOME goals, yes, but I never warmed up to him. Part of the reason could very well be that he never seemed to care about Barça or his teammates – Rivaldo was all about Rivaldo.
      Anyway I would agree that he is a legend of the game rather than a Barça legend.

      Ronnie, however… When talking about his peak we must clarify that his peak makes the Mount Everest look like a mole hill. Awesome, joy-defining, brilliant, imagination-defying. you said it, incomparable.

      And his peak lasted only a couple of seasons. Those seasons were at Barça.

      Remember his reception when he visited us with Milan for the Gamper Cup and tell me he is not a Barça legend.

  7. What does Coentrao have what Adriano or Maxwell doesn’t have?


    Coentrao is one of the world’s elite left flank players. He is immensely skilled on the ball. This is not knock on Adriano or Maxwell – it’s more that Coentrao is an elite, world class talent.

    At the same time he is generally a good defender. His work rate is high and he will fight to defend.

    Putting Coentrao on the left flank would give Barcelona a kind of bilaternal dynamism and width that would be astonishing to watch.

    Part of the issue now is that Dani is so dynamic teams will overshift to play him and to play additional defenders through the center.

    With Coentrao on the left they would be unable to do that. That’s why he would make such a huge impact on the team.

    Coetrao on the left and Dani on the right would give the team width on both sides of the pitch and would allow the front three to position switch and move off the ball with even more freedom.

    He is athletic. Has good pace. Despite being thin is strong for his size. He has a bit of a mean streak in him as well which I like from a defender.

    In order to excel in the Barca system a player needs to be able to thrive in compressed spaces because of how deep teams defend . This is one of the things Villa is trying to adapt to as he spent significant time at Valencia playing on the counter.

    Coentrao has excellent touch, handles the ball extremely well and passes well. His skill set is very well suited for closed space football.

    For me, he would be the best LB in the world for the Barca system.

    What I would do in turn would be to shift Abidal to CB almost full time to set up a 3 man rotation of sorts at CB next year. I think Pyuol is going to need additional rest next season.

    Buying Coentrao does a few strategic things for the club. The club is short at CB. Buying Coentrao would not only add a young player on the left but would also allow them to shift Abidal to CB thus addressing the lack of depth at CB as well. Abidal is the right age to bridge the gap as the youth system talent at CB matures.

    At the same time the LB situation in the youth ranks isn’t great. And Coentrao is only 23 so he also addresses the long term need to replace Abidal at LB as he ages.

    Given how good Barca is, few players in the world would have a large substantive impact on the club, particularly in the starting 11.

    For me there are two players who really stick out in that regard – Coentrao and Llorente. Of the two I would likely prioritize Llorente. But I think Coentrao’s impact could be immense on how they play. It would give them such dynamism and skill on each flank from the two wing players in their modfied 2-1-4/3-5-2 formation.

    1. Now I really want Coentrao!!!!

      Llorente in many ways would be great for Barça but

      1. would he be content to not be an automatic first choice?
      2. do we really want to weaken the rest of our Liga so much further by buying the best of the rest each summer?

    2. I love Coentrao and to be honest, I don’t think that Llorente is going to happen at all. If Messi is our long term no.9, then whoever we sign would have to be able to play out wide, specifically on the right.
      Messi, Villa and Bojan are all no.9’s for our system.
      Llorente would change our dynamics so I can’t imagine it happening.
      The other thing is apparently he is Mourinho’s first choice for EE. Unless of course they keep Adebayor.
      On football manager you just sign Romelu Lukaku and it solves that problem. Maybe not so much in real life though

    3. If he is anywhere as good as you’ve described him, then yes, we should pay whatever it costs. I also like the idea of buying young for LB and shifting abidal to CB permanently

    4. I agree that Coentrao is great, but we can’t permanently use two very attacking fullbacks without sufficient cover (ie two DMs). Adriano adds a lot to the attack, but against a good team, it is a big risk playing him. That’s why Abidal is perfect for us on the left. He provides a perfect balance with Alves on the other flank. With two super attacking fullbacks, it would be Pique and Puyol alone. Teams would see that very quickly and all they would have to do is play with more than one Striker, and we would be extremely vulnerable. When we have had to play with two attacking fullbacks in some big games, Pep has tried two things (that I can recall): try Maxwell out at the Abidal role and playing more defensively, and try moving Busquets back as a third CB. Moving Busquets back as a third CB works well for the defense, but the team is left without a DM, which is huge. In the match against Atletico, Pep used Busquets as a third CB, and he moved Xavi into the DM position. But he isn’t good in that role, and it hampers his influence on the game. If Atletico played more narrow, they would have caught us out. A solution would be to play Mascherano, but that means taking out one of our attackers/Iniesta. However, I really do like the idea of a three man defense with maybe Puyol-Pique-Abidal, and Alves and Coentrao as wingbacks. Since most teams play with only one or two Strikers, we would be fine defensively, and with Alves and Coentrao providing width, our forwards wouldn’t have to provide the width, and they would cause more damage being in the box more. Maybe Pedro would go off and Iniesta would play LW (where I DO believe he plays well), but he isn’t better in the box or at finishing than Pedro is… Gosh, if we could play with 12 players, we would be perfect :).

    1. Funny, I remember seeing Coentrao in this tournament for the first time and thought he was the bright spot in an otherwise underwhelming Portugal team.

      I checked up on his wiki page from time to time, but when I saw that he was being loaned out from Benfica to mid-table Portugese clubs, I figured he was yet another bright talent who had fell by the wayside.

      Imagine my surprise to see him on the Portugal roster for the WC, and perform so well throughout the tournament! He used to play on the wing, but the change to LB seems to have done him good.

      Anyways, that’s my random coentrao anecdote.

  8. Well, Pep has 16 in the clip and 1 in the hole… but is he gonna to make some (EE) bodies turn cold?

    The next month gonna tell.

  9. Thanks, Luke, but I can’t take credit for that gif. It was posted at least three times before today, I just went back and found it because it seemed especially appropriate. 😀

    So happy, still celebrating!

  10. Isaiah, thanks for writing that post regarding the smoking ban.
    You should’ve posted it after this post of Dani Alves though.
    You’re post was really good but just like you predicted, it got lost.

    I wish I had the same luxury as Nav, to live in a country where it is not allowed to smoke. Although I don’t go to bars( I don’t drink) but I do go to restaurants.

    And yes, I think they should ban smoking in Camp Nou. And at every public place. If they (the smokers) really oppose this, just designate one room especially for the smokers where they can smoke happily.

    Recently I read that there is a 3rd hand smoke. Yes, it sticks to the walls!!

    1. LOL! I can personally vouch for 3rd hand smoke. I don’t smoke, but both my parents do. (My brother never smoked, but has asthma & allergies. Coincidence?) Anyway, when I visited my parents last fall, I took advantage of the free laundry facilities before I left, naturally. When I got home and unpacked my suitcase, I found that my clean, just-washed laundry still reeked of smoke. I had to wash it all again to get rid of the smell! Nasty.

    2. Sorry just need to to clarify that smoking isn’t banned outright in New Zealand — though with the way regulations are going, this is a distinct possibility within the next decade and a half. As of now you can’t smoke in bars and restaurants outside of designated areas.

      I’m pretty big on personal freedom so there are certain things about the ban which grate me, but from my limited reading on the matter there’s substantial evidence to suggest that second-hand smoking is harmful (Miguel? :P).

      Allow me to go on a bit of a tangent here. Even if second-hand smoking is not that harmful, the story doesn’t really end there. NZ has universal health care, which means it’s paid for by the tax payers and is available for everyone. Smoking related illnesses unnecessarily burdens our (already over-worked) health care systems. so anything which reduces and discourages smoking is fine with me, from a social utility perspective.

      I understand this argument can be applied to alcohol as well, but it should be noted that the sale and distribution of alcohol is extremely regulated. Also, there have been many historical efforts to ban alcohol but it was never very successful (lots of reasons why).

      Anyway that’s my little rant, lol.

    3. how dare you. why you picking on me? 🙂 i don’t smoke. i’d never be caught dead smoking in front of anybody who wasn’t a consenting adult. i’m actually glad people can’t smoke inside bars or restaurants. do i think it’s harmful? yes. but do i think it should be public policy to tell a person they can’t have a cigarette? no. i guess i’m against an outright ban but any ban bugs me in principle.

      i’m gonna go bum a cigarette off of my friends at practice now. pfff.

    4. Hahaha, I’m not really trying to pick on you :D. I’m just interested in why you think the evidence for second-hand smoking is specious is all, as from my (albeit limited!) reading on the subject, it’s not specious. I’m more curious than anything.

    5. Actually I should mention that I’m fairly iffy on the outright public-ban thing. I think the government’s plan is to wean people off it slowly and then when only a small minority smokes, ban it altogether. Cunning plan.

  11. Remember his reception when he visited us with Milan for the Gamper Cup and tell me he is not a Barça legend.


    Just to clarify – of course Ronnie is a legend. No question. But his legend is always going to be tied to a kind of wistfulness I think. What could have been…

    It never should have been such quick flame. He should have played at his peak the more mature Messi.

    From time to time, even now, when I watch messi play I still wonder about all the football he and Ronnie never played together and should have.

    He’s a legend. But just a different kind of legend than Dani will be. Dani will never approach the sheer level of brilliance that Ronaldhino achieved. But his will be a more sustained form of brilliance at a traditionally non-glamorous position. And even more importantly, he will have been one of the central players on the team which will likely achieve more sustained success over time than any other.

    Time matters. That’s all. It changes the nature of the legend is what I guess I’m trying to say.

    1. Euler , in fact I’m happy ronnie ended up the way he did back then.
      It was painful to watch , i was so angry to watch him benched at times , even wished his off form was due to the bandana thing he was wearing on his head.
      But had he not left our midfield , xavi would not have the chance to take over his maestro role.
      The consistency in xavi’s game , and his overall contribution to how barcelona play cant be compared to ronaldinho’s.
      Forget the goals , and the “looking to the other side” passes. We are talking about a player that has created a system around him for the team to play, consistently , rather being the focus of the team in case an individual moment of brilliance might come up.

    2. even wished his off form was due to the bandana thing he was wearing on his head.

      I swear by this theory. If he had took it off his head, he would’ve been great again lol.

      I get what you’re saying regarding Xavi and what not, but I still think with Ronaldinho at his peak plus a mature Messi, we could have achieved great things. And I think Xavi and Iniesta would still have major roles under Pep with Ronaldinho around.

      I think Pep would have less of “give it to Ronaldinho and see what he can do” and more Ronaldinho as part of the group.

      Regardless, he’ll always be my favorite player ever.

    3. Mei, our play could come from the right (Alves, Xavi & Messi) and (Iniesta & Ronnie) on the left. That’s insane!
      No need for Coentrao :p

    4. Part of the problem with Ronnie was that we got into an “as soon as you get the ball give it to him mode”. I remember the same happening with Dalglish at Celtic and he said he just had to get out. He used to receive balls on the touchline while surrounded by three defenders, for goodness’ sake.

      I’d love to have seen what he could do with Xavi and Iniesta but as a forward on the left. My mind keeps imagining what he would have done with the space our current team gets on the left.

    5. Ronnie was a legend…I dunno if barca can ever get another player like him…When messi scores a brilliant goal, I shall be be too amazed to even react, just shaking my head with my mouth open wondering how he did that..when Ronnie used to score, I always had a smile on my face…one of the few players who mixed fun with football..guess mindless fun took over at the end…

  12. Wistfullness? What could have been?

    Yeah sure, I suppose one could wish for an in-form Ronnie still at Barça. Or that his brilliance (motivation) lasted longer than 3/4 seasons.

    Some things are just meant to be.

    But the 3 seasons in which his star did shine, it shone brighter than any other star, ever. I’m just grateful he was with us. Cannot really wish for more.

    Again, some things are just meant to be. Had his peak lasted longer it probably wouldn’t have reached such ridiculous heights.

  13. I hope Abidal was watching Crackovia last night, because they had a nice tribute to him at the beginning of the episode.

    I am loving the new Di Maria character! 😛

    And both Jordi Rios and Bruno Oro deserve whatever the Spanish equivalent is of the Academy Award. They never fail to deliver!

  14. quotes from Zubi from the official site (i translated from the spanish):

    “Alves is a different type of player, a football player that from the wing brings a dynamism, a physicality, an arrival, a refined tecnique, but above all he brings the capacity to change the dynamic of a match. He plays with an intensity that has nothing to do with tactical themes but instead with a spirit of the game. Alves has everything….We have had a look at the market and i believe there is no one else like him, he is unique in this position.”

    and words of hope:

    “and now let’s see….if we can recuperate Abidal for the end, that would be the best signing of the spring.”

  15. Quick points:

    – THANK GOD that Alves renewed. Now most of our main players are set to remain in the team for the next few years, and most of them (Pedro, Messi, Iniesta, Alves, Pique, Busquets) are young enough to be at a peak level then.

    – On Ronaldinho, I think of him as the second most important person in our recent history after Cruyff. He was the biggest factor in our turnaround in 2004 or so, which was the basis of all our future success. Of course Cruyff’s impact from youth structure to coaching set the foundation for the past twenty years and all the success of then, but after him, I would say no other individual has had as much impact to us. Ronaldinho will be one of our all-time greats. That said, as Euler said, there’s always wistfulness when talking around Ronaldinho, and if Alves keeps on being this good while we keep on being this successful for a few more years of sustained achievement he’ll be one of our club legends, especially if we win a CL or two more.

    – On the smoking bans, if it was a matter of personal freedoms that’s one thing, but smoking in public affects people around you so imo it should definitely be banned in places where people can take up second-hand smoke. The evidence linking second-hand smoke to disease is solid enough for me. And simply the fact that breathing in smoke from people near me is irritating and makes me cough, and the soot and dust particles in that same smoke is still getting into my lungs anyway, is enough to do so for me. If drinking alcohol involved taking a sip and then spraying out bits of alcohol at my face, that’d be annoying and would rightly be made illegal in public places, imo.

    It’s that okay people should have the freedom to smoke if they want to, and people should have the freedom to be in a public place of their choice without breathing in smoke clouds if they want to. The first freedom cannot impede on that second freedom. So keep smoking legal but not in crowded or social places especially where you won’t be able to move around easily and relocate, like a stadium or a restaurant where you sit in your spot. In a place like a park where people could just move around in all those expanses, fine. But if I was watching a game and someone next to me was chuffing away I’d be really irritated, it irritates your eyes and makes you cough.

    Smoking is a social thing when it’s a group of smokers yeah, great ice-breaker and all. Not when it’s a smoker and a non-smoker, like when I go out with smoker friends. That’s just uncomfortable, when trying to talk and smoke is blowing in your face.

    – On Coentrao: haven’t seen enough of him to see how defensively solid he is, and the most crucial thing I want in any LB we get would be to be very defensively solid and have good pace. I talked about it at greater length on an earlier post, how the left-back in our system is defensively solid but also provides attacking width in the sense of a passing option waaay out on the left, even if he doesn’t have the dribbling or a skills of an Alves. What Abidal does now, in fact, providing pace and solidity in defense plus that option when we attack for Iniesta or the like to pass to and open up the pitch. Adriano doesn’t provide the solidity, Maxwell doesn’t provide the thrust.

    Agree with what Euler says though. If he is strong, fast and defensively solid but also provides that elite level of ‘occupying the flank and being a huge threat a la Alves’ that would make us very very difficult to stop.

    – On Inda leaving Marca: Kari please do update us on the repercussions this has had on Villarato Corp!

    – On Llorente: No I don’t want him to come. Messi is fantastic as a number 9 and Llorente is way too good to just sit on the bench except just when coming on as an option (esp knowing how little Pep rotates). Plus I just sincerely dislike taking Bilbao’s great hope and the player that is their talisman, just for our bench. Same for Madrid’s bench. At least Keita and Adriano are major squad players for us and cost proportionate for a top-club squad player, Albiol was used a lot in Madrid last season… But us getting Llorente for a bench spot would be the same the big two are doing with Granero, Canales and Leon, for example, from being star players of their clubs to literally not a single game at all at times (except Granero recently).

    1. I thought you only became a fan recently during the last period of Ronnie’s great period?

      Although I would love Coentrao since many of you rate him very highly here, I dont think he will get a lot of playing time next season unless Pep rotates him with Abidal at LB, which we all know, he is not a fan of rotating.

      Ofcourse the perfect scenario would be to capture Coentrao now before somebody else’ does and let him rotate with ABidal and let him learn our play slowly. Not everyone can be like Alves. Come in and straight away fit in like a glove.
      But don’t think Coentrao would agree with that, sitting on the bench.

      Same applies to Llorente. First of all, I don’t think he would fit in our system as he can only play at CF where Messi plays.
      But I do think he would fit better than Ibra.
      The perfect scenario wiht Llorente is that he is our plan B.
      But once again, I dont think he would agree.

      Crouch can be our plan B!!

      I don’t really care if we get another Spanish NT player in our team. I don’t really care if we weaken another team. Im a fan of this club not the league. All I want is for us to win. It’s not like we are doing something illegally. We pay for the players.

  16. about the smoking. I’m sorry but it is outdoors.

    to give you an analogy.

    I smoke, but I don’t have a car (I know, i know, had i quit smoking 10 yrs ago and saved all that money spent on cigarettes I could have bought a Ferrari by now)

    However when I walk in the street, there are a lot of cars. The exhaust fumes are unpleasant to me. It is proven to be unhealthy.

    The people driving them are inside the car – meaning they are damaging my health while they themselves are not bothered by the toxic fumes their car emits.

    Should we ban cars?

    1. Ban cars , along with wireless routers and antennas owned by mobile phone companies that are spread out through every city to enhance their signal!

    2. Do the cars emit carcinogens? Are the fumes emitted inside buildings and every conceivable public space? Do other drivers need to inhale your noxious fumes?

      BTW, I do think cars that burn fossil fuels need to go..

  17. Right before going to bed I checked this boog but couldn’t find any new posts only for me to wake up and realise two had been put up. Damn the timezones. Lovely lovely news about the renewal Though I was never in doubt that it would haeppen. Face it alves might sport tatoos but he’s always striked me as sensible and would want to keep winning.
    on out defense transfer I agree wit signing an effective lb who would play first choice with adriano and Maxwell playing backups while abidal plys CB fully with fontas as backup.
    Another scenario is still signing the lb selling Maxwell while abdriano plays backup. Abidal covers for both positions while we sign a CB and probaly promote fontas. But I guess this is the more complicated of the two and I kind of like having everyone know his specific role in the Team.
    Am dying to see how adriano (if pep plays him) would square off against s. ramos at the April elclassicos.

  18. About smoking in the camp nou I don’t feel it should be banned outrightly. A special section could b made strictly for smokers outside of which it would be illeg

  19. First of all I’m glad Alves signed the renewal… Although I hate his play-acting, his crosses ending in the stands more often and his defence fuckups(have to say they drastically reduced lately, thank goodness), I do like him. His play-making skills are really important for team, as is his tremendous work-rate and mostly because of the number of times he provides an outlet to Xavi out wide while the maestro is being man-handled in the middle!!

    Regarding that legendary status that we are talking about… I don’t think Alves would ever be considered a more Barca great than The King Ronnie. True he was at his peak for just 3 years but that was sheer brilliance, joy and magic. He’s a greater legend than any other player who donned the blaugrana except for Johann Cruyff because while the Dutch gave an entity to the club Ronnie lifted it from the hollows of misery!! All the rest are continuing the legacy

    About Coentrao, I’m one of those who believe buying a new LB, moving Abi to the center to rotate with Pique-Puyol and promoting Fontas would be a better solution than buying a new CB. I have a few reasons to believe so… We’ve all witnessed how the few defenders that we brought in during the recent past have struggled to adapt to our style. It’s going to be a similar story in case we buy one now too, at least for the first year. So better have the reliable center-half in Abi to rotate with the main pair than risk another budding player. Also it would be easier to ease Fontas into the team when we don’t have to worry about making another youngster adapt to the style. And as others have already mentioned we’d have to find a worthy successor to Abi’s throne sooner or later. For that Coentrao would be perfect. He’s good at defending and really good at providing the width. I think NewCastle’s Jose Enrique would also do a good job.
    Maxwell would have to leave. I love him but I think it’s time. He lacks pace and might end up being a liability because now we need our LB to attack too.

    Regarding the Fabregas and Borja Valero rumors, do we really need another midfielder!? What haps to Afellay and Thiago if we buy another star
    !? Not to mention Messi is now more than capable of filling in the void if one our midfield generals isn’t available, what with his maturity in providing the killer passes after the WC. He’ll also be heading to Copa America this summer, which means he’d get even more experience being the creator!!

    Regarding the backup CF, I’d love Llorente but not a feasible idea. He costs a fortune and is a starting 11 quality for any other European super power out there, not good to keep someone so good on the bench for the dressing room atmosphere sakes. Also he’d definitely not want to be a bench player with the Euros fast approaching!!

    Finally what do you guys think of this Salomon Rondon of Malaga? He was linked to us last summer but ended up at Malaga. He’s been huge this season. Is 7th on the top goalscorers list having scored 12 goals, as many as Aguero! He’s been statistically the most clinical striker in the country this season. Young CF with a nice aerial ability…has the exact profile to be our bench striker me thinks.

  20. If we’re looking for a backup forward, it is going to be hard to get young world class players. It just doesn’t make sense for Llorente to come to Barcelona because he won’t be in the starting eleven and he’d be worried about losing his place on the National team.

    What about signing Forlan? He’s a great player who hasn’t had the best season at Atleti so they might feel it is time to move him on. He’s also a great finisher and more than capable of creating chances. Perhaps at this stage of his career he’d like to play with a team that is always in contention for lots of trophies and plays in the Champion’s League (which Atletico Madrid won’t be in next year) even if it means he doesn’t start every game.

  21. Everyone knows my votes for signing during the summer: Thomas Muller and Gareth Bale. I don’t care how much they cost.

  22. rondon.a pacey,athletic player also good in the air.he will not cost a lot and he is not world class ala loriente,so he wont mind sitting in the bench.

    No to nilmar,rossi and borja.any 1 of the tripletes will improve us a lot,but i dont like barca hunting players from other liga teams.the tripletes will not be an automatic buying them we may improve but the other team will be weakend significantly.i m completely against this unless that player is a starting 11 ala villa.

    Havent seen coentrao except in wc,but what bout monreal of osasuna?he is good.

  23. to quote a xavi

    barca players like to feel the ball,but madrid players are hungry for winning,they never give up.

    Not the exact quote.

    But i cant but feel we the barca fans are very fragile and negative about our team unlike madrid or manu fans.why?the comments section of the getafe review.some of the fans are trembling like a ringing bell.especially a person by the name of blaunero.thats why AS invented cagumetro.why?we barca fans are always nervous.

    Criticize your team when they deserve it but have faith in this team.

    I think most of us here hadnt gone through the 99-04period.i did and still back then i have faith in them.

  24. oleguer .that will be awesome.pique may play a moc moc beardy game with him and bojan may seek help from him to grow beards

  25. Yeah as hammeron says none of Nilmar, Rossi and Valero are better than our starting 11 players, at the same time each of them are good enough to be a regular starter for any of the European super powers out there. Having such a talent on the bench is not good for team chemistry. Also I’m all in for ‘do not weakening the fellow Liga teams’…by constantly killing them we, along with EE, are reducing the level of competition in the league which means we are reducing our own standards. By facing very weak opponents week in week out we won’t have an idea as to how powerful the competition would be around Europe… Don’t want a case of SPL happening to this league!!

    Also Rondon would be good, right? A young targetman kind of striker to learn trade from our excellent players won’t mind sitting on bench until he’s ready full time. Having such an option on the bench means the plan B has arrived baby!!

  26. Luke, Bale just renewed his contract last week so we can forget about him.

    I second the opinions of those here who say the LB has to be defensively solid. Admittedly don’t know much about coentrao but from what Euler and co. say he sounds like the perfect signing. How much would he cost?

    Also like the idea of getting Rondon. Would be the first criollo in Barça (not counting a certain wing forward who would rather represent Spain even though he will never get a call up than to represent his home country)

    1. Benfica are very difficult to do business with. They have their valuation and stick to it.

      I’d guess Coentrao would be 30M+. He will be very expensive.

    2. that is true. I always wonder how come the Portugues teams are able to sell their players for so much money, while Eredivisie teams seem to let their stars go for a lot less…

      30M+ for a left back, though? That is crazy. The only back that cost that much was Alves, and he is one-in-a-kind

  27. Luke,

    Mueller is a great idea. He also would be a potentially very high impact signing. His ability to play on the right wing and also play as a shadow striker in the middle would be tremendous.

    Mueller could start wide on the right and come in centrally to link up with Messi when he drops deep. That way Villa/ Pedro could stay wide left with Dani maintaining width on the right. Mueller’s height would also be a nice addition.

    Mueller isn’t a player I really think about much however because just find it very difficult to think of what would make Bayern sell him. Mueller is well on his way to being a national hero in Germany given his international play and he seems like a particularly valuable foundation piece for Bayern’s future.

    Schweinsteiger, Lahm and Mueller are three players I just can’t see Bayern letting go unless there are extenuating circumstances. Bayern would sell Robben or Ribbery far faster than they would Mueller. And in general Bayern is very financially solid.

    But on the whole – Mueller is a great idea. He’s skill set would work very well.

    1. I was just kidding, though I would love both. Mueller couldn’t be had for any less than $40M and Bale’s stock is with an English up-and-coming club, meaning it would require no less than $35M to get him, if not much more.

      Mueller though, he would be an amazing signing. He’s going to be amazing.

    2. I was just struck by the Mueller idea because he really does fit very well in terms of skill set.

      I just never even thought about him in the Barca system before as I never figured he would ever leave Bayern.

      The example does clarify issues related to skill sets at the striker position.

      I think he’s probably better on the wing than in the middle as a shadow striker the way Bayern play him now. There’s been some talk about them perhaps selling Robben.

  28. People are saying we are back in it for Cesc this summer….or that other spanish midfield dude Borja Valero, but if Affelay is any indication of how Ajax players integrate into our system, shouldn’t we be looking at Christian Eriksen, who said he would turn down liverpool for us, and is about 1/3-1/4 what cesc would cost

    1. That’s because Erikson doesn’t like England, neither does his dad, after his 2-3 failed trials at Chelsea. Don’t know why he’d want to leave Ajax at such a young age. A brilliant, two footed player too. We have players like him in the B team though, only one footed.

    2. he doesn’t want to leave. he said the only way he would leave is if Barcelona came knocking…

  29. Haha so I hype up Coentrao for a few months and no one cares, then in one post Euler manages to persuade 90% of the posters. Screw you guys! 😀

    Yes, Coentrao would be almost the perfect signing. He would slot in right away at LB, IMO. Not just spot-starter. Pep is realizing what Adriano’s presence at LB does, now imagine someone who is basically Maxwell-Adriano’s good parts, with a little temper.

    I posted in the last thread how you hated him from the beginning cuz of one play. So, are you holding all of Alves’ little whines, and Biscuits’ peek-a-boo against them? Let it go!

    Luke’s shout of Muller is amazing. I completely forgot about him, what a perfect signing. He could roam the top three positions for us, it’d be brilliant. Other signing we’re linked with that could work are Neymar, Alexis Sanchez… and I personally wouldn’t mind the young Dentinho. All can play along the whole front three and are VERY young.

    According to barcastuff we’re looking at signing an LB,CB, and ST this summer. no mention of a mid. Which is good because we have two signings practically there already, Afellay and Thiago. don’t count out JDS either.

    My wishlist is Coentrao, we don’t necessarilly need a CB perse… but we definitely need to give Fontas minutes before seasons end. If the kid proves himself good enough we’ll have Abi, Puyi, Pique, Fontas, plus makeshift CB in Sergio. Thats fine right?

    If we do sign a CB I’d prefer we go young, as Abi and Puyi are getting up there. We need a pacey CB. We should’ve gotten Otamendi who was sold at such a bargain last year.

    Of all our signings, I really hope none come from La Liga. I wouldn’t mind Hulk, but I don’t think he’d be content to not start week in and out. Otamendi possibly would, but i guess we should get a more proven player.

    Oh two last things, I know he played for EE, and is a little punk, but Robben said he couldn’t dare play in the Europa.. and speaking of EE. WTF happened to Ezequiel Garay?? He was supposed to be the next best CB, and have EE even played him?

    1. He started in a good sum of games last season, especially when Pepe got injured. But then he was injured for around 4 months at the start of the season and only got back to the squad a month and a half ago. At that time, he made two appearances. He has Pepe, Albiol and Carvalho ahead of him.

  30. Finally he re-signs!I knew it was going to happen. I don’t think that he would be able to leave.

  31. So what’s all this about a strike, then?

    Well, the president of the LFP, José Luis Astiazarán is certainly looking to right that wrong by calling for a suspension of the round of matches scheduled for the weekend of April 2 and 3 – a stoppage that would see la Primera finishing the season on 11th June, some three weeks later than planned.

    The root cause of the LFP taking such dramatic, not to mention ludicrous, action is cash – and it is supported by the Spanish FA. The Spanish League want the government to end the legal requirement of one game a week being broadcast for free to punters, a move that would supposedly bring in more income to the league’s coffers. The LFP also want the government to allow them a bigger share in betting and lottery revenue.

    They just don’t make it easy for us La Liga fans, do they? All my EPL-supporting friends will be laughing up their sleeves at me. 🙁

    1. “The Spanish League want the government to end the legal requirement of one game a week being broadcast for free to punters, a move that would supposedly bring in more income to the league’s coffers. The LFP also want the government to allow them a bigger share in betting and lottery revenue.”

      The spanish gov’t has a law that says one game a week has to be broadcast on TV. Not Pay tv.
      The teams want that game so they can sell it and get more money for themselves.

  32. Ahem. I SAW COENTRAO LIVE! 🙂 (Portugal vs Argentina)

    He goes forward a lot, like Alves. He was linking up with C.Ronaldo pretty well. He’s good with the ball, which the best quality a barca defender can (must) have.

    1. Hey Eklavya,

      Did you get your pictures to work?

      3 more days until it’s my turn to see Messi!

    2. 3 more days only?! Dayum, time flew by!

      I hope you get to see him, and that the crowd doesnt boo him lol.

      And no the pictures aren’t working. I tried uploding them on Facebook with modified settings but only my “friends” can see them Oh well…

  33. Coentrao and Rondon in… Font as and Thiago promoted.

    Henrique, Keirriron, Caceres, Gleb, Maxwell, VicSan and Milito out. Regarding Bojan the jury is still out. I think a chance to impress on the right wing is the last one he got. If he does well ship Jeffren out. If not keep Jeffren and loan Bojan to a mid table LaLiga club

    1. And if it’s not a LB but a CB that we are intent to buy then has got to be Botia… I don’t think there could be a CB out there other than him who could slot right into our style

    2. Thiago Silva could. I’m not saying we buy him just giving an example.

      Botia has looked good but I don’t know sometimes.

  34. Bandwidth exceeded on the gifs..

    Also, what effect will this renewal have on Alves’s buyout clause?..last I heard it was 90 mill…

    1. Alves Buyout Clause – Apparently, it’s $150M, then it goes down by $25M a year until it reaches only $50M on the last year

  35. yep that one and i think he is a very good one.

    Now calm down guys.we still has 12 games left and if we are as awesome as in from october to december then 15 games.

    Then we can think of summer signings.

    And if rOSELL and the board wants a marquee signing then its gotta be alexis sanchez

  36. @Josep’s
    Rondon?? That striker for

    Yes it’s him… He’s been awesome for the relegation threatened Malaga. Although he’s been out for around a month with injury he’s the seventh highest goal scorer this season. Statistically he’s been the most clinical striker in Spain, along with Pedro! Scored as many as Aguero!! Scored against the likes of Villarreal, Valencia and Sevilla too. I think he’s the next big thing, the fact that he’s been scouted by the big two last year and this huge season affirms to that. I think if he scores a few more goals by the end of season he’ll be able to save Malaga from relegation and will attract many eyes in the summer

    1. @lev

      Haha whom do Spurs not want!? Of course no body wants to go to them that’s a different story :p

      I think if Pathetico be able to retain Aguero, Rondon could make a deadly pair with him. As good as their previous magic pair involving Forlan!

      But I really believe this kind of the guy would be the ideal substitute striker in our squad. Provide the plan B as well as be content to be on the bench while still learning the trade. Proven in the league too, could be said because he had two really good seasons already. I would have loved to see Carroll here, although he’s English, but looks like that train has passed. I’m not saying Rondon is the perfect player for us, just saying he has the ‘profile’ to be the perfect player who could improve this squad

    2. I agree. I would be ok with Coentrao, Rondon and if we can find a lefty CB to replace Milito…

      They said we would have 45 million euro right? Plus the 25 million that we would get for Ikeahimovic?

    1. thats true besides its not harmful to dream.

      So here i go.
      Alexis sanchez,rondon,monreal and djourou.why djourou?cause fonta,pique r slow,puyi is becoming old and we only have abi as a pacey CB.djourou has pace and i think he has all the attributes to be a great barca defender

  37. @xavi,
    i have seen some rondon.he really can improve us and he will provide us a targetman who is not lazy and slow ala BANGS.
    Good player though he is that is BANGS,He is not a team player

  38. someone mentioned that it was pep who persuaded to buy dani at a hefty price.dont think pep can yield that kind of power at that was all danis stunning one man show for sevilla.

    Pep is awesome,but dont trust him with the transfers very much.see BANGS and Chygsy.if it is la masia then its all pep.

  39. a nice little interview with zubi by skysports:
    At the end of the day, the only thing that can keep Guardiola going is his passion for the job, keeping the hope alive and the passionate feeling that bubbles up inside when you walk through the gates of the training ground every day. And of course, it’s a heavy pack that he’s carrying on his back. How long can he keep that up for?,19528,11096_6828670,00.html

    i didn’t know it was dinho’s 65th birthday a couple of days ago. 🙂

  40. @Jim yeah we might get Ibra back…(gulp)

    but gee, if we get him back we will have a whole summer to find a buyer. Dare I say we could get 25 million for him? Or maybe even more?

  41. Things are a little slow during international break, and transfer speculation isn’t my cup of tea, so here is a game we can all play!

    What would be your dream Barca XI?

    Just to make it more fun, here are the rules:

    1. Barcelona players only.
    2. Players must have played with the Barcelona first team for at least one full season.
    3. You may pick no more than 2 of the current Barcelona squad.
    4. You may not play anyone out of position. (That means no moving Busquets to LB, for example, although you could put him at CB if you wanted.)
    5. No Figo. 😛

    Now I’m off to think about who I would pick.

    (And I’ll probably get hectored too)

    1. zubi
      dani, koeman, puyol, gio
      laudrup, deco
      luis enrique, ronaldo rivaldo, dinho

      easy peasy.

    2. i don’t know how to strike. 🙁 ronaldo’s name was supposed to have been crossed out.

    3. How difficult! I realized I liked so many of the new squad that it’s difficult to choose just two. Hmmm….

    4. Damn thats a tough one.



      Yeah I put 3 of the current Barca squad, blame me.

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