What a signature, what a coach!

Has it been 3 years already? And does anyone remember when?

Forgetting for a moment about how much Pep Guardiola has aged in three seasons, let’s look back a ways, shall we?

After two trophyless seasons suffused with partying superstars, poorly timed red cards, collapses and rumors that he had lost the locker room, coach Frank Rijkaard was fired. At that time, debate raged, about not only the propriety of the firing and whether he deserved another chance, but who would be the best candidate to lead FCB into the future.

The club announced that it would be the then B-team coach, Pep Guardiola, and everyone wondered.

I post a an excerpt from a comment at The Offside, from a poster whose handle was Citizen:

Not to deflate everybody’s optimism about Guardiola as the new manager, but there’s a problem with it that hasn’t been mentioned here yet: as former captain under Cruyff, and seemingly getting the majority of his support from Laporta, who seems to worship Cruyff, just further extends Cruyff’s strange stranglehold over the club’s operations. In the past couple of years, I think that we’ve seen Cruyff offer his bucketloads of “opinions” whenever the team starts to struggle a bit. What’s Pep going to do when that happens, when his main backer turns into a critic? Cruyff is probably my favorite player and I also loved him as a manager, but I think his influence on the club is starting to have sour effects. If he wants to offer all those “opinions” on how things should be done, then he should just stand for the presidency (he’d probably win) or become the technical director (like he almost did at Ajax) or manager. He does the same thing for the Dutch national team, by the way, I think. The way things are now, Cruyff can be said to be de facto running things — do you really think they could have named someone manager without his approval? –, without being held accountable at all.

Now I’ll be ecstatic if Pep could prove me wrong and bring some discipline and drive to this team. For his own good, and the club’s, I just hope he knows what he’s getting into and has the balls to cut ties to Cardinal Cruyff and go about his job independently.

I’d say he did that, and then some. And just think what might have happened had Joan Laporta and the board not thought that Jose Mourinho’s demands were extravagant, eh? For those curious about what we had to say about things back in The Offside days, you can go here.

Guardiola, before signing on the dotted line three years ago, presented a resume that included his Way of Dealing With Things, that included bringing the medical setup into this century. We didn’t know what that meant at the time, but now we do: preventive training, improved fitness, specialized diets, etc, etc. The result has been, if not fewer injuries, fewer debilitating ones, players coming back more quickly from injuries and a mostly intact core that has led us to, during his three-year tenure: 3 Ligas, 2 Champions Leagues, etc, etc.

When we were debating Rijkaard and Guardiola, the latter was busy plotting world domination, and he seems to have succeeded. Everyone is saying that this will be his last season with the club. I remain unconvinced, but we will cross that bridge when we come to it. But for now,

Related Posts with Thumbnails

Recent Posts

Written by:

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.

302 Comments

  1. Eklavya
    June 5, 2011

    Whoa, Pep from barcastuff and fcbtransfers.blogspot.com used to comment on The Offside?

  2. K_legit
    June 5, 2011

    lol at the vid..brought back memories of that Flintstones episode and 88 fingers Louie 😀

  3. blitzen
    June 5, 2011

    See! His hair was already thinning when he signed! 😉

    Visca Pep! Long may he stay! I suspect after next season he may take a sabbatical year, leaving Tito in charge, then come back. Assuming the club is smart enough to agree to that.

  4. PhepheSa
    June 5, 2011

    I admit i was worried when they appointed Pep but my word that was the best decision the club ever made since i started following this beautiful team. I hope he doen’t leave anytime soon and i believe it will be up to the pleyers whether he stays or not as he stated that the day he feels the team is no longer motivated that’s when he’ll leave.

    Way off topic, anyone watching the tennis? Knew it was too good to be true to be so happy two weekends in a row. Can’t Fed just beat Rafa atleast once at Roland Garros pretty please! I’ts so frustrating.

    • Jim
      June 5, 2011

      Not likely at Roland Garros but if he carries his form into Wimbledon it could well be different. Nadal played the big points unbelievably well today.

      • PhepheSa
        June 5, 2011

        Yeah he did didn’t he, it’s just amazing how competitive he is. Hopefully Fed wins Wimbledon by beating Rafa though i know it’s a huge ask.

  5. Whatever
    June 5, 2011

    What a decision from Joan Laporta. I still remember that first game in Guardiola’s first season against Numancia when we lost… After that, we conquered the world.

    Visca el Barca!

  6. June 5, 2011

    For being my longtime idol, I was aware I might be a bit bias when I was excited when Laporta decided to give him the chance to lead the team. A loss and a draw at the start and not a very convincing performance in the first few games didnt help his case, but afterward, it was all history. How blessed this club is to have this group of players and this coach all at the same era. There are lot of spetial coaches, but there is only Unique one , and he’s ours.

    Will paste it with all the spelling flaws, as its one of the statements I am mostly proud of:

    “Pep , if it clicked for him, can write himself in the honor book of barcelona, and it will need more than one difficult game on a difficult field, to make me change my mind.”

    October 1, 2008 on FCBtransfer (pep) blog, at a time where Guardiola was the easy target of angry fans.

    Its scary to imagine the situation of the coach who will take Pep’s place. Really. In three years he is as unreplacable at Barcelona as Sir Alex at Manchester united. That tells a lot.

    • PhepheSa
      June 5, 2011

      “Its scary to imagine the situation of the coach who will take Pep’s place. Really. In three years he is as unreplacable at Barcelona as Sir Alex at Manchester united. That tells a lot”

      Couldn’t agree more. Just wish people give him the respect he deserves like they do with SAF but i guess that’s wishful thinking. Can’t believe how people just turn a blind eye when it comes to his achievements it’s like they started watching Barca now and don’t realise how different the team has been under Pep.

      And how come you always get your predictions right!

        • PhepheSa
          June 5, 2011

          Hahaha that is so true. But good call on almost everything. You talk with such conviction and you are almost always right. Guess i have to take your word on the Sanchez issue cos i’m now confused as to whom i think would be good for us, Rossi or Sanchez.

    • PhepheSa
      June 5, 2011

      He’s really giving it to EE Bad. Love his passion and honesty and coud listen to him talk football all day.

      I looove Xavi

    • Whatever
      June 5, 2011

      Man, what an interview.

      He really is my favorite Barca player ever.

    • Vj
      June 5, 2011

      This is part of the glory. Years ago we fought with Rivaldo’s goal to win the fourth place in la Liga. People should remember it. It was 7 years ago. We won 4th place and we celebrated so hard, we felt like we’d just won the Champions League! We got into the UEFA with Antic, ended up 6th, playing at home. Today people don’t remember how hard we fought to get to this level.

      And last season was a failure to some :O

  7. hammeronmessi
    June 5, 2011

    What an interview by xavi.he is sharp,may be one day he can come back to coach us ofcourse after his retirement.

    the person that translated that had done a terrific job.

    and nadal is such a physcial beast ,a great yes but to me federer is still the last graceful and the greatest.This graphite tennia bat and power is not to my liking.

    kudos to rafa and also to federer

  8. hammeronmessi
    June 5, 2011

    @JNICE

    can u provide me some good books on barca.

    i just cant thank you enough for all the links.

    can u provide me a torrent file for the 2 6 game

    • K_legit
      June 5, 2011

      I could reco you some book titles:
      1. Barça: A people’s passion by Jimmy Burns
      2. and not quite related to FCB but Homage to Catalonia by George Orwell

      • hammeronmessi
        June 5, 2011

        wow u also read George Orwell.hats off to you.

        only read the animal firm

    • June 5, 2011

      It’s not on Barca, but “Brilliant Orange” is a great, great book on Dutch football that gives you a much greater appreciation for Barcelona. The entire book is about the Dutch/Ajax model, their way of playing, and their way of seeing and thinking differently about space. You can see so much of Barca in the way he describes it, and it’s got a lot of fun little nuggets too.

      • Barcaleya
        June 6, 2011

        Agree. One of the best football books around. Talks about spatial awareness and intelligence which the Dutch have loads of since their geography is flat. This flatness even affects and is reflected in their art as well as football.

        Read this far too long ago to remember much else but I highly recommend this to everyone who haven’t read it as it does explain much of how Barcelona plays.

  9. hammeronmessi
    June 5, 2011

    I rembered the day when barca announced the pepster will be the gangsta of barca,i was releived and told my barca loving friend that instead of that poison mou the barca board made a good and risky option,that friends was crying that we didnt get mou and replied that wahts the meaning if we dont wining,i said i had gone through six barren years so i can go another six but there will be no compromise.

    looking back at that time and now we r one of greatest team of all time.

    have got a little complain though his transfers are not always good but seems he also is getting good at that respect.

    did anyone know if dani is his or txikis signing?

    • June 5, 2011

      The whole team buildup was the work of Txiki more than anyone else. And that’s during Rijkaard and Pep time. Its a shame that Txiki’s work will go unfairly underrated. Not sure if this team would have reached this level without him. Not only he built this squad over and over again, but he also re-engineered the initial salaries structure that helped the club to recover its initial financial setback at the same time while rebuilding the first winning squad. Laporta always insisted that hiring him as a sport director was the best decision he made at the club. I agree.

      Mind you, it was his idea to employ Pep as a B-team coach in the first place.

      Now that we’re giving credit for the team builders.

      • hammeronmessi
        June 5, 2011

        thanks for the info.

        i also think that txiki didnt get the recognizition he deserved.

  10. hammeronmessi
    June 5, 2011

    Thanks jnasty and illegit k.

    hmm i think i might have to ask jose then

      • hammeronmessi
        June 5, 2011

        thank u mate.

        i already got a HD one of that 2 6 match but unfortunately that was with spanish commentary.i need a HD with a prefably sky commentary.dont know why i like kevin keatings,armstrong and rob palmer,may be i m used to them.never heard the commentary of hudson though.

        thamk u again VJ

        • hammeronmessi
          June 5, 2011

          that should be

          thank u again VJ.

          u r from india?where in india?

        • Vj
          June 5, 2011

          Yeah, about that one how’s the speed?
          I was getting 0 seeders -> O kbps. Hope you have better luck.

          I’d downloaded that match 2 years ago, and it was the first time I did/could do so, so I didn’t mind the Spanish feed. It seems a loooong time ago though 🙂

          • hammeronmessi
            June 5, 2011

            i also didnt mind back at that time with the spanish commenatry.

            may be i m getting too greedy

  11. ciaran
    June 5, 2011

    Thanks for that link Kxevin.
    Those were the days, 18 replies to a post. How things have changed
    Just reading it there I spotted this gem of mine:
    ‘Pique would fill the void left by Oleguer like a full body cast for a papercut.’

    • hammeronmessi
      June 5, 2011

      i also noticed the no of comments.

      simply wow

      • hammeronmessi
        June 5, 2011

        rumour has it that u have a torrent file of that 2 6 game with more seeds and leechers then the link king jnasty.

        can u provide it for me?is it english commentary

        • June 5, 2011

          I don’t have the original torrent for it, and the only ones I can find have only 3-4 seeders on there. I downloaded it back when it was the most recent Clasico, so the # of leechers and seeders has decreased significantly…

          • hammeronmessi
            June 5, 2011

            my bad.

            thank u though.

            guess i have to rewatch that with spanish then.

      • June 5, 2011

        This is funny: Isaiah’s first ever comment. Forshadowing, anyone?

        “Nolan, of course it’s with an S. I’m an idiot. Hopefully that’s the only mistake I ever make! (actually I also didn’t include the é)”

    • Ryan
      June 5, 2011

      And now the blog usually gets 18 comments as we wait for the liveblog to load 5 minutes after it’s posted. 🙂 I started reading right as the team moved over to BFB, although it seems there have been several Ryans over the years. 😆

  12. Jnice
    June 5, 2011

    Spain u21-Russia u21 1-1 FT. Thiago played well & had an assist. Montoya was solid. Bojan only played 45 min, but he was fairly lively.

    Miño made a couple of fantastic saves, but should’ve done better on the shot that led to a goal. Jeffren didn’t do much in his 45 min.

    Botia looked solid all night in defense. Hope we buy him back from Sporting. Also, Jose Angel played 10 min, didn’t do much but was played as a left winger, not a left back.

    • hammeronmessi
      June 5, 2011

      hey dont u wanna sleep?

      my wife dont let me enter to our room.she is angry.

      whats your reason?

      and exactly how good is botia?

      wish if we could sign thiago silva

      • Jnice
        June 5, 2011

        Sleep? It’s 4 pm lol. LOL at your reason. Sorry, mate.

        Botia is really good. He always looks solid and sure of himself. There’s a reason he’s been a starter for Sporting for 2 years now. Outside of the big two, I think most would agree he’s top 5 amongst CBs in La Liga.

        I wish we could sign Thiago Silva too, but that’s nearly impossible.

        • June 5, 2011

          Yup. And for 2m? I still can’t believe we haven’t already done that. It’s a no-brainer if you ask me, particularly for a club that is going to have to answer some defensive questions, sooner rather than later. Unless Guardiola is thinking that one way to get Mascherano more playing time is to use him in the back line, until next season, when Keita’s time will surely be up.

  13. Ryan
    June 5, 2011

    How quickly Pep’s 3 years have gone!

    And did anyone else go to Boston for the USA-Spain game? I was just 8 rows behind the keeper, so I got a great view of Pique. He looks so much more serious than his twitter/FB persona. Maybe it was the lack of Cesc and Puyi around him, hehe. He has a real calmness despite enemy players closing in on him right in front of the goal. And Villa always made the USA defense tense up, more than the other Spanish forwards. His movement brought to my mind a wolf scattering a flock of sheep. 😆 Even with my trying to focus on Busi, he’s very good at being quietly good at what he does. I can see why so many people downplay his abilities, as he makes quick and painless work of his position. At least we know Xavi will be there to remind people how awesome Busi is. 😀

    I can’t wait for the DC game and getting to see 100% Barca!

    • just listenin
      June 5, 2011

      I was in Boston for the match, and have tickets for DC too. Spain supporters represented in a big way up there, continuing celebrations for the WC. Agree with your observations. It was a good example of how Villa causes chaos in the opposition box, I liked your analogy and you can see how he incites confusion well in the live match. He had some good chances and opened space for the others. Pique was very solid and anchored the back line, cleans up most messes. The more focus you put on Busi, the more impressive he becomes. I think he is misunderstood and underrated. Barca players look very odd in white.

      Thought that it was interesting that on Barcastuff over the weekend they noted that the relations between “those whom we shalt not mention” and ours in the national team are still at a low after the Claiscos, noting that the major problem was Arbeloa and Villa’s falling out. The two of them were warming up together, and it looked uncomfortable like two guys grudgingly kicking the ball “at” each other – it looked professional, but not very friendly, could be projecting, but it didn’t look collegial. Similar dynamic in my opinion between Busi and Alonso. Interesting to watch the interactions after all that’s gone on.

  14. Jnice
    June 5, 2011

    hammeronmessi, I’ve found one that is apparently HD with 8 audio tracks, Sky Sports being one of them. Problem is, it’s megaupload, not a torrent. I’ll post it anyway.

    Firs Half:
    /http://www.megaupload.com/?d=D16K1RI6
    /http://www.megaupload.com/?d=NGAG7YIE
    /http://www.megaupload.com/?d=ZWK0KL42
    /http://www.megaupload.com/?d=WTI6OH1O

    Second Half:
    /http://www.megaupload.com/?d=P66JTCJX
    /http://www.megaupload.com/?d=6UE0E00T
    /http://www.megaupload.com/?d=K0O1OTWN
    /http://www.megaupload.com/?d=335NSOAW

    Credit to adnanthebest501 at fbtz.com

    If you do decide to download it, here’s some instructions: Join with Split & Joiner File and unzip the RAR

  15. Jnice
    June 5, 2011

    barca96… I think it’s time for you to stop being mad at Thiago and Mazinho:

    Mazinho “Exit rumours? Thiago has a contract with Barcelona and he’ll stay next season. The boy is working hard, he made significant progress this season and hopefully the next one will be even better.” via barcastuff

    Don’t wanna say I told you so, but…

    • June 5, 2011

      I opened the page knowing that Jnice posted this comment already 😉

      • Jnice
        June 5, 2011

        LOL, of course.

        BTW. check out the new banner done by Patrick. Great work.

        Now I’m off to get some groceries. Adios.

  16. June 5, 2011

    What’s with the stories about RoSELL crying about how the club isn’t getting the recognition that it deserves?

    “I’m sad that some people around the club haven’t known how to enjoy the Wembley win and the great work we’ve done.

    “I want to speak up for this squad, this team and this coach. I’ve got the best team in the world, we’ve won the Champions League and the important thing is how we won it. I’m happy to speak up for the team. If this had happened anywhere else, they’d still be talking about it.”

    Wow. I’m gobsmacked. The praise and effusion that has rung down from hither and yon for this club is, even for one who loves it as much as I, verging on the absurd. If there were a story with the headline “Watching Barca gives you orgasms,” it wouldn’t shock me.

    What RoSELL is really saying, if you ask me, is “Hey! This is my club! I’m da president! Recognize meeeeee!”

    But here’s the thing. As others have noted above, build a club, then talk crap. And you will have you chance next season, if the Guardiola rumors are true. Also, Puyol and Xavi won’t be getting any younger, Keita will be gone, as well. So Mr. RoSELL, shut your face until you do something other than skate on somebody else’s coattails.

    Just sayin’.

  17. June 5, 2011

    And big, giant ups to Patrick for the new banner. Some astute eyes have already noticed it. For those who haven’t, do so. Now. Then bow down. 😀

  18. June 5, 2011

    Allas has banged out a Rossi v Sanchez video.

    http://youtu.be/1MXQe2jgmrg

    Consensus in these parts is Sanchez, right? I keep thinking about defenders, myself. Both players look the business. I think it will come down to which club is the easiest to deal with. And I’m sure that had Villarreal been easier to haggle with, the Rossi deal would already be done. Now that Sanchez has entered the picture, seems like the folks at Villarreal should contact the folks at Deportivo about what happens when you try to screw around too much. Ask Filipe Luis where he’d rather be right now. His club screwed him by being silly.

    • Vj
      June 5, 2011

      Which would lead to a battle for Sanchez with Inter, who are definitely interested. Not what one would hope for. Besides I don’t think he’ll come cheaper than Rossi. Now where did I keep my Hector Pills? DAMMIT!

  19. Cesc Pistol
    June 5, 2011

    Since we’re talking about which forward to buy I’ll post this gem from Hector a few years back

    Messi to me is the prototype Barca winger/forward hybrid which we use on the wings. Why? These to me are the requisites for a Barca “hybrid”. Note Messi has all of these is spades.

    1) Work Rate.
    One of the tenets of our philosophy is ball pressure. You have to work like a mad man when you don’t have the ball to pressure, force dangerous turnovers in the opponent half, and delay opponent attacks while the fullbacks and mids get back upon losing possession. Not every winger/forward in the world is used to this work. I’d like to see Robben or Cristiano Ronaldo be forced to do this. By Henry’s own admission, this was the part that cost him the most to adapt to.

    2) Versatility.
    We switch our forwards all over the place so they must be able to play multiple positions. All our first choice line can play the 9. Henry is VERY useful because of this attribute. Iniesta, on the other hand, has had a very hard time the few times he’s been on the right and I have at least never seen him play the 9. His versatility is related more to midfield.

    3) Finishing.
    Our forwards must all score their fair amount of goals. Henry has done this in spades. Messi does this. Iniesta… he reminds me of Messi circa 2005 with seemingly all his shots magnetically attracted to the post or the GK’s gloves. That doesn’t mean he can’t score more. I’ve noticed that Pep has apparently encouraged him to shoot more and he’s had much more quality shots on goal this season. He just has been unlucky in shots and injuries. He can score more but he will never be a Henry who is a natural 9 (one of the best in recent history).

    4) “Desequilibrar”.
    This means “destabilize”. They must take defenders one on one and consistently win. With all due respect to Kevin, Henry wins 1 out of 5 of these matchups. How many times have we seen his seemingly trademark “fake outside, run inside, and let off a bad cross” move. You leave Iniesta or Messi one on one and 90% of the time that defender is a dead animal on the road. Must say that Ramzi is dead on regarding the diagonal cover. Kevin says Henry drags 2 defenders making it easier for Messi and Eto, I say Messi and Eto drag multiple defenders, giving Henry space.

    I’d like to add a fifth to his:
    5)Creativity
    To create chances for other forwards, have one-two’s in tight spaces to beat their marker. To deliver low hard passes either through the last line or one across the face of the goal.

    From what I’ve seen of both Sanchez seems to suit the criteria better.

    • momo
      June 5, 2011

      Henry fanatic much?
      Good points though 😀

      • Cesc Pistol
        June 5, 2011

        Nah. I’m neutral on Henry, as I said, Hector posted that a few years ago.

  20. June 5, 2011

    Dude Wayne Rooney has confirmed vit twitter that he got a hair transplant…happiest moment of my life!!!!!

  21. Blow-Grenade
    June 5, 2011

    Xavi is done for. He has tendonitis. He plays the games that he is playing through his pain barrier. I do not forsee him playing a full season like the previous years. Barca can come up with all the wingers they want, but, without an able midfielder who can replace Xavi, I do not foresee trophies in the locker room.

    • Jnice
      June 5, 2011

      From Xavi’s interview in Sport:

      Perfect. It hurts a bit sometimes, but it’s nothing. But yeah, I tend to avoid confrontations because the punctures hurt like hell. But that’s what cured me. I have Cugat, Pruna and RIcart to thank for it. The medical staff has been with me 100%. It was like I had something constantly weighing on my tendons, I couldn’t even walk. I didn’t think the pain would ever stop, but I kept playing. I suffered playing, and that was the first time it ever happened to me. All this pain was worth it, though.

      I know you want Cesc at all cost, but come on now. Let’s not make things seem worse than they are. Xavi is an honest guy and if he was in pain every match, he would’ve said so.

      • Blow-Grenade
        June 5, 2011

        schweinsteiger would fit the bill too.

        • June 6, 2011

          We need players to give Xavi some rest in the matches where we can afford benching him (at least 40% of the matches we play we can have a Xavi-light selection. We dont need someone to take Xavi’s place, not in the coming two years. Regardless of the fact that such player is not available.

          Thats why, I prefer to buy Afellay (quality CM), Thiago (very talented and can develop to a world class CM), use busquets as CM leaving the DM to Mascherano, or move Messi there in two years after re-engineering offense. Oh wait…

          I think Xavi will have enough time to heal now compared to last year. National team coach need to be reasonable as well, and I think he is showing so.

          • mei
            June 6, 2011

            Mascherano is a world class DM. But he cant bring the one touch that busquets has and is vital to our midfield.Against teams that will request as to circulate the ball in a lightning fashion mascherano cant be our starting DM , sadly, for all his qualities.

          • June 6, 2011

            @mei

            Busquets is better than Mascherano as a DM? Most of the time, thats true, based on game requirements.

            Is there anyone better than Mascherano as a DM for Barcelona -beside Busquets? No.

            Is there anyone in the market better than Busquets as a future Xavi? No.

            Is a Busquets+someone else in the midfield beside iniesta better than Mascherano+Busquets+Iniesta? No. Not for me at least.

            Thats how I make my case.

    • Ryan
      June 5, 2011

      Xavi has said he wants to play in the next World Cup, let alone next year for Barca!

      • 145culegirl
        June 6, 2011

        From Barcastuff,

        During Xavi’s visit to a racing circuit, multiple MotoGP world champion Valentino Rossi kneeled down and kissed the player’s feet. [sport]

        Is it real?.It’s really nice to hear.It’s quite funny.

  22. Eklavya
    June 6, 2011

    Nice to have a fresh banner! What do the subtitles mean? “El Blog, Et Torna,El que, Li Dones”.

    • Helge
      June 6, 2011

      Well, according to translate.google.com it means:
      The Blog, You Back, What, We Women
      So, there you go! 😀

      • blitzen
        June 6, 2011

        😆

        I think it means “The blog gives back what you give to it.”, ie. “You get back what you put in.”

        • Eklavya
          June 6, 2011

          That’s why I was asking, I Google translated it as well but it made no sense.

  23. Eklavya
    June 6, 2011

    Hahahahahahahaha, look at this GEM I found:

    Kxevin (2 years ago):
    Iniesta is a strong player who is still improving. Ditto for Hleb. Both will be great for Barca.

    I would say that often, people mistake laudatory or comparative comments about a player for a slagging of that player. Iniesta is the goods. No question. But Hleb does bring attributes that Iniesta doesn’t have. That’s why you have many different players on a team. And there will be sides for which Hleb is better than Iniesta, just as there will be sides for which I would rather see a Hleb/Keita/Yaya midfield. Other sides would have me very much into a Xavi/Iniesta/Keita midfield, etc.

    Some others tried to argue with him, but this what he said:

    Kxevin 2 years ago
    That’s my story, and I’m sticking to it. The season will tell, gents. The season will tell. You’ll certainly see Iniesta more often than Hleb, but mark my words:

    At this time next year, I expect a lot of “You were right, Kxevin.” And this is what I will do: 😀

    ^FAIL! ^^

    • Hehe! Well to give Kxevin some credit Hleb did bring the brand new Hlebbed atribute!
      Seriously though, no one could forsee the utter failure that Hleb would be and for me it remains sort of inexplicable the HUGE fall in career. I mean the guy failed even at birmingham. I Actually thought he would fit in well 🙁

    • June 6, 2011

      If Messi scores every time he takes a long shot we would need no other forwards in the selection.

      I’ve seen people hailing him as a god when he dribbles a whole team and score, then label him as selfish when he loses a ball he could’ve passed.

      C’est la vie!

  24. Apparently R. madrid are a step away from coentrao…25 mil + Garay =35 million. I don’t think that even moumou is that arrogant and so afraid of losing to us AGAIN to have 2 very good players for one positition. So do you think he might try to employ marcelo in another position e.g the middle?

    • Lev
      June 6, 2011

      I wonder how much money they will spend this summer. If they think Coentrao is better than Marcelo, why not? I don’t know where he would start in the middle, especially since he just bought Sahin and Altintop also.

      • blitzen
        June 6, 2011

        Altintop was a free transfer, I think. So no big outlay there.

      • June 6, 2011

        I think for someone who is distanced from the club, this all sounds like a big mess. For us following this closely, it makes more sense. Don’t get me wrong, I’m against the Coentrao signing. Against the Altintop signing. A 100% WITH the Sahin signing. I’ve been following sahin for 5 years now. Always loved him.

        To make it seem simpler. Garay is leaving. Canales and Pedro Leon are leaving (Canales on loan as Mou has told him he likes him but Canales wants a starting spot: Ozil > Canales). Lass is also gone. And so is Gago. Those have not been sold, but they are leaving the club. You also have to take into account that Kaka is injury prone and has not played more than 1 month straight without an injury in 3 years. You also have to consider that Carvalho is turning 34 and can’t handle playing 40+ games a year.

        The idea from the Coentrao signing is that Mou believes he can play at right back and link up with Di Maria very well. Mou likes Ramos at center back and wouldn’t mind using a pairing of Pepe and Ramos. I personally fail to see how this is considered the way to beat Barcelona, as it only makes our defense not as strong and our attack better. Arbeloa is a decent defensive full back that I’m sure Mou will use against Barcelona if Ramos is not available on the right.

        As for the Altintop signing, i highly doubt he will be starting games. I think he will be used as a utility man in desperate situations or in the case of extreme injuries. He can play RB, CM, AM and as a winger. So he covers for a lot of spaces. Sahin and Khedira will probably share the starting spot.

        I hope this clears some stuff up.

        And just to make life better for everyone, it seems we won’t be keeping Adebayor. Thank god!

        • Srini
          June 6, 2011

          The signings seem to be intriguing. They make Real Madrid (an already direct and sharp counter attacking team) even more sharper in what they specialise in. Question is will they play to their abilities and skill levels – in the true sense – against the Barca squad or will they prefer to park the bus and play Arbeloa instead of Coentrao to kick the living shins of Barca’s magic midgets? Will Mou translate his ‘la puto amo’ shtick from the media room to the ground? Or will he continue to Darth Vader and depend on dry grass and thickets to stifle Barcelona.

          Here is hoping a true encounter between the Barca, Madrid styles. And therefore for the entry of a Coentrao into a direct minded Madrid. And therefore for the entry of a Sanchez and a Rossi into Barca’s own carousel.

  25. mei
    June 6, 2011

    @ ramzi well I doubt anyone can disagree with this. My only concern with busquets as a future xavi, although he is the player that is the closest to what the maestro brings to the game, is his body. However most likely thats what we said about xavi in the past and look at him now.
    I pretty much thing that this club is blessed that had xavi in its ranks.Not just because of his qualities, but because of how he imposed them to the teammates : he infected them with a way of playing that is spread out throughout the team.
    Can someone be as precise and consistent as him?obviously no, but the philosophy is there and I believe that at this point it can actually work without him.Not right away, and not without a cost but eventually I think that by the time he retires he will have cemented it to everyone.
    And thats just how great this player is; he may print a style into this team’s brain that doesnt really require his presence to be evident.

  26. K_legit
    June 6, 2011

    As long as we are doing the ‘first comments’ on the offside page thingy, this is one of my first posts at the offside page..not the first one mind but you might find this interesting.

    Krish 2 years ago
    Valdes deserves at least a 8…I think it was he coming out to meet Kanoute that stopped him from scoring…
    very good game for the custodian…

    Henry was dog shit in the first half…constantly slowing the game down and at one point i was bellowing out for SPF45 but he proved me wrong in the 2nd half

    Messi was marked out of the game in the first 60 min but he shifted to the center and raised hell,,,a new number 9 anyone.. 😀

    Busquets has this great habit of getting guys sent off…hmm…this makes it two for the season

    right here
    http://barcelona.theoffside.com/la-liga/sevilla-0-barca-3-aka-most-impressive-to-date.html

    Don’t say I didn’t call the shift of Messi to the centre and Busi’s ability to get under the opponents skin 😀

    I also remember that I was the poster who got the highest rating on Isaiah’s spam filter..900 something it was..so proud I was 😀

  27. June 6, 2011

    No, you’re judging Hleb in the now, rather than the then. He was bigger and stronger than Iniesta, and had the ability to keep the ball while being hammered from behind.

    His pre-injury performances were excellent. Then he picked up the knock against Betis, and by the time he returned, the team was flying, and he didn’t seem able to make the effort to get his place back. Then came the attitude problems, and that was that.

    But I suggest that you spend as much time watching matches from back then as you spend perusing old comments, for some perspective. When you don’t, THAT for me is a fail. Huge.

    Had Hleb not gotten injured, his play probably would have proved my point. Who knows. But as with so many players, once cules make their minds up about him, that’s that. In that regard particularly, cules need to grow up.

    • Josep
      June 6, 2011

      Whoa relax man, he’s just having a go and reading old posts. It’s fun to look back, he in no way said you’re an idiot or anything. Sure maybe if Hleb stayed healthy you’d have been right but as it stands your “At this time next year, I expect a lot of “You were right, Kxevin.” And this is what I will do: 😀 ”” was way off. No problem with that.

      But you’re right, Eklavya is a huge failure. 😀

      • June 6, 2011

        Oh, I’m very relaxed. Usually always am. And what I said still stands. There’s a reason that Hleb was getting so much playing time before the injury. But memories are selective when it comes to players who have come to be a dictionary definition for failure.

        Hleb screwed himself, but we helped him. Who knows what went on in practice. There had to be a reason that he never got a shot after coming back from the injury. And he defo talked himself out of town.

        But circumstances changed regarding that situation. And without mentioning the different circumstances, it’s an incomplete thought.

        I take stands on a lot of things. I recall saying that Villa wouldn’t have many more goals than Ibrahimovic. I don’t see anyone saying “Hey, you were right. It IS hard for a first-year striker in our system.” Instead it’s “Yesh, but Villa isn’t an asshole.” Which is true, but neither here nor there.

        I take a stand, and don’t mind at all being called on it when I’m wrong. Just put it in the proper context. We will never know what would have happened had Hleb been healthy, and developed right along with the rest of the club.

        • Eklavya
          June 6, 2011

          Hmmmmm, you’re talking way too generally. Like Josep said, I was pointing out that the “At this time for the year […]” comment, which didn’t work, that’s all.

          “you’re judging Hleb in the now, rather than the then”

          Well yeah, I am. No one could have known how he turned out, I certainly didn’t think he wouldn’t work. I remember the very well his injury, Kxevin, and I recall you talking about it at the end of that season as well, and I (somewhat) agree with you. Infact, I quoted what you had said to some of friends who were bashing Hleb. I remember reading his interviews at fcbtransfers.blogspot, I remember him wanting to succeed. I don’t have a selective memory, you’re using me as a “typical culé who remembers only the end products” to prove your point (which is correct overall) but not with me, because I know his whole story (which you narrated above). I think if he had a more like Keita attitude and professionalism he would have eventually gotten his chance. Maybe he would have worked out, maybe not, but he would have gotten his second season which is so vital players in our system. But in the end, he didn’t succeed (and his future is pretty much over with us, so it’s safe to say that he won’t), period.

          • June 6, 2011

            I don’t think that a Keita-like attitude would have saved him. The side left him behind, and he wasn’t willing to bridge that gap. Recall that Keita didn’t get gapped because he stayed healthy. When Hleb talked himself out of town, that ended any chance that he had to stay on with the club.

            Maybe he thrived more in a less-stringent and demanding environment, ultimately. What we do know is that his time with us started a spiral that his career before coming to us would have argued against.

  28. barca96
    June 6, 2011

    I’ve been away for the past 2 days and now it looks like Sanchez is closer to us than Rossi is.

    Again I read that Thiago might leave. There must be something going on Jnice. These rumors start from somewhere. It’s been days already. Perhaps nearly a week already that Thiago rumors are flying around.
    I also read that Mazinho said that he’s sure Thiago is staying next year but why are there rumors in the first place?

    • June 6, 2011

      Further, if the rumors are surfacing with the speed and frequency they appear to be, there might be something going on that we aren’t aware of.

      And now, we wait, but we’ve seen lots of names come up in rumors, including Keita, Thiago, Dos Santos, Botia, Maxwell, Bartra, etc, etc. Usually they’re just rumors, or something where someone makes something up then the rest of the baying hounds run with it.

      I’m on the record as being against selling or trading Thiago for anybody right now. But maybe Guardiola knows something we don’t. Or maybe Afellay is kicking so much ass in practice that Thiago has become expendable. Who knows, except the club? All we can do is have fun speculating.

      For me, an awesome summer would be promote Fontas, bring back Botia, buy Willian, pick up a cheap utility midfielder (a De Guzman type) and an attacker (Sanchez, Rossi, whoever). I also want, even though I know he won’t, for Guardiola to give Keirrison a look. And so does Keirrison.

      • messi_fan
        June 6, 2011

        I agree totally with the last paragraph.

      • Josep
        June 6, 2011

        no one in the de Guzman family should be allowed near the Barcelona camp. 😀

        However, Giorgino Wijnaldium is pretty versatile.. and Keirrison’s agent asked that Pep include him in the first team preseason (can you seriously just ask that?)

    • Jnice
      June 6, 2011

      My point wasn’t that Thiago won’t be sold or go on loan or whatever. You said you were angry at Thiago and his father because of a silly rumor saying they wanted guaranteed playing time and all of this nonsense.

      If that was the case, Mazinho wouldn’t have made the statements he made yesterday. He has no problem speaking his mind. If they were thinking of leaving, he would’ve said so.

      The rumors are coming about because he’s one of Barça’s most promising and attractive players right now. A lot of teams are interested in him and many of the teams would love him to be included in deals for their players. Plus there’s still a bunch of Cesc speculation, so the papers try to put 2 and 2 together and figure that if Cesc comes, Thiago’s time would be very limited, so that must mean he’s leaving.

      That’s on Barça side, not his. He’s not the one going out saying he wants to leave nor is he including himself in potential deals. That was my point.

  29. blitzen
    June 6, 2011

    Did anyone watch the Real Madrid/Bayern Munich legends game yesterday? Wondering if it is worth downloading. If I do it would mostly be for Zidane.

    • Jnice
      June 6, 2011

      I saw a bit of it, but I can’t really say. Maybe highlights would suffice? There were a few nice goals, but the pace of the game was really slow, obviously.

    • June 6, 2011

      I saw it. I’m biased, since most of these players are my idols. But i can say one thing, Zidane can still start for any club in the world. He was amazing!

      • blitzen
        June 6, 2011

        Zidane is one of very few RM players that I can say I admire wholeheartedly. One of the best players ever, really, and a very decent person as well. I hope that his increasing involvement in the management of your club will help offset the “Mou Factor”.

        • June 6, 2011

          “I hope that his increasing involvement in the management of your club will help offset the “Mou Factor”

          My thoughts exactly!

  30. Cruyff article (translation TotalBarca)
    “Midfielders? If the choice is Cesc, a likely starter, then there will be four of them (Busquets, Xavi, Iniesta, Cesc) for three places, which also means everyone gets to play a lot of games. Mascherano? He’s the lucky one: he gets to play in two departments.”

    Interesting how he fails to mention Thiago in the midfielders…I really hope we don’t sell him, however I think that If we do it would be more for behavior problems and him wanting more playing time than ability concerns.

  31. Josep
    June 6, 2011

    Thoughts on Lucho?
    I love the move, in fact I was looking for a Serie A team. New American owners, Landon Donovan too arrogant to come there, Lucho and SOME Barca B players posssibly? Thats my team. plus I always loved Totti’s story.

    But the thoughts on he wanting to take Jeffren, Montoya, Oriol Romeu, and someone else (forgot who). I’d love him to take the first three. It’d be valuable playing time for all involved, but Romeu’s future is here. The others would be great loans.

  32. ooga aga
    June 6, 2011

    kxevin will like this picture:
    *http://www.fcbarcelona.cat/web/castellano/noticies/futbol/temporada10-11/06/06/n110605117885.html

    because it shows that even during the CL celebration, keita still had the “huh? what?” look on his face.

    • Eklavya
      June 6, 2011

      Wow, that’s crazy. I have the SAME poster of 2009 with the team in the same position in front of the CL cup and Keita ALSO has the SAME expression. Wow

  33. blitzen
    June 6, 2011

    And speaking of Bayern, rumour is that Miroslav Klose is off to Valencia on a free transfer. Interesting.

    • Ryan
      June 6, 2011

      If they can make Klose play in a German shirt that might actually be a great signing!

  34. June 6, 2011

    For Blitzen and he who is interested, here is a download link for the charity game from yesterday. I found it enjoyable to watch. Slow paced game, but the goals make it better. Zidane and Figo looked like they haven’t stopped playing together for a minute! And zidane is too damn technically gifted. It was nice seeing Makaay for Bayern as well. Elber too.

    http://forum.rojadirecta.es/showthread.php?127091

  35. hammeronmessi
    June 6, 2011

    I may be wrong, but one of the best if not the best barca bloggers has no sense of humour.dont take it personally kxevin.

    eklavya is not a failure,he even realized that i can properly reply.

    bout hleb i think given the chance he could had been an asset for us,now it may baffels to the new cules but at the begining abidal was pretty ordinary, but he stayed healthy,worked hard and now he is the best in our backine.

    correct me if i say somethibg wrong,

    • June 6, 2011

      My sense of humor functions perfectly, last time I checked. I’m one of the funniest guys I know. But who are you to suggest that I lack a funny bone? You don’t know me. You don’t really know anything about me or how I function. It’s the same reason I don’t make personal presumptions about people on this board. I. Don’t. Know. Them.

      And “Don’t take it personally” is usually is meant to deflect the blow of an insult. Further, any words that follow are usually intensely personal, as yours were. It’s why I stay clear of such phrases.

      Now, what I don’t have a lot of is tolerance for unwarranted attacks. Nobody should, but my sense of fairness is particularly acute. It’s led me to stand up for other commenters in this space, as well as players, coaches, even purportedly evil ex-presidents. That isn’t going to change. And if that makes me humorless, so be it.

      I’d also suggest that you go back and read the exchange more carefully, if the meaning that you got from it is that anyone is suggesting that Eklavya is a failure. Far from it.

      • Josep
        June 6, 2011

        What I read from the whole exchange was Eklavya playfully reading old posts.

        You make a very bold prediction that people will be eating crow regarding their criticisms of Hleb. You then threw out the “At this time next year, I expect a lot of “You were right, Kxevin.” And this is what I will do: 😀 ””

        He was just bringing up a past comment you made, thats all. It’s funny. It wasn’t an attack on you (seems how you took it). Everyone makes wrong predictions, like your “United won’t sell Cristiano, you can bank on it.” The whole fail thing is uncalled for but its just Eklavya’s youthful exhuberance! 😀

        and I don’t think Hleb stands out still if it doesn’t get injured, he still wouldn’t have learned the language and turned out to be an idiot. Also without Hleb we are one insult short 🙁

          • Eklavya
            June 6, 2011

            How about we close this case? No one attacked nor was attacked. The end.

      • ciaran
        June 6, 2011

        ‘don’t take it personally’ is just like starting a sentence with ‘not being sexist but…’ – it’s guaranteed to be a sexist comment next. I always enjoy those sentences.

      • hammeronmessi
        June 6, 2011

        my eyesight is quite good,i dont need any spectacles.

        I’d also suggest that you go back and read the exchange more carefully, if the meaning that you got from it is that anyone is suggesting that Eklavya is a failure. Far from it.

        yah,i get that thats why i say eklavya even realized that i can reply in the proper place.

        to me eklavya comment is just to remind the old days.it was not in any way to belittle u.

        insult no way.if i want to insult anybody then i can do that in an western way not in an asian way.

        thats that.and i think both of us can forget the matter and look forward to who is better?ibra or villa?

        • hammeronmessi
          June 6, 2011

          dang again misplaced my reply.

  36. soccermomof4
    June 6, 2011

    A few things:
    1. Someone said something like “that’s the fun of Silly Season”. Well I don’t think it’s much fun. It’s like waiting for your final grade in college. You’re not sure how you did on the final exam, but you wish you were just able to get the suspense over with and know the result for better or worse. Maybe I’ll be calmer when a get a few more of these under my belt.
    2. I have the best hubby in the world. He made sure that on our anniversary we went to a happy hour at a pub that had ESPN coverage of the US v Spain game before we went out to dinner. So hard to keep from rooting for our guys when I’m supposed to be rooting for my country. Oh, and I found myself scowling each time I saw an EE player. I wonder if I’ll ever be able to enjoy La Furia Roja the same as BCO (before clasico overload).
    3. Finally, thanks for being here, BFB. I just had the misfortune of being stupid enough to read the comments on soccernet. I think I’ll stick to here. Some guy went on and on about how Messi shouldn’t play because of the HgH shots. I guess diabetics getting insulin shouldn’t be allowed either, after all, insulin is a hormone. It’s surprising how much hatred and ignorance abound.

    • Obii
      June 6, 2011

      Theres a part of me that enjoys reading those comments over on soccernet. I’m not entirely sure why. That HgH guy is a massive troll, and all he ever does is copy paste his previous comments, baiting other people to reply to him. He could also be one of the soccernet reps trying to stir up some controversy so their absolutely shoddy reporting gets more hits. Conspiracy theory. I’m turning into Mou! Noooooo!

    • Josep
      June 6, 2011

      happy anniversary 😀 lol I used to peruse soccernet like the player below says its entertaining to read the stupid comments and pure vitriol that is unfounded.

      • Eklavya
        June 6, 2011

        I’ve never been there, from the likes of it, it’s even worse than goal.com

        -Abidal on the bench for France NT vs Ukraine. Well, that way he can’t get injured.

        • Para
          June 6, 2011

          I’ve never really watched Abidal play for France- does he always play centre-back for them? Is he as awesome as when he plays for Barca? 🙂

    • Vj
      June 6, 2011

      So the happy anniversary song is for you!

      Sometimes its not worth losing your cool. Otherwise going ballistic is natural. Going through ontd during the Busi fiasco was a nightmare. So many ‘Culés’ wanted to hang him going by just a video. Shouldn’t they believe in the players a bit more?

  37. Helge
    June 6, 2011

    Marvin Martin, ever heard of him? He plays for FC Sochaux.

    Goal.com introduced him as the little Xavi, the new hope for the playmaker role in the French national squad.
    And guess what?
    In his 15 min lasting debut, he scored 2 goals for France! 🙂

  38. June 6, 2011

    Since I guess I’m the one who always brings up non-Spain/USA internationals, I guess I’ll leave this here…

    World Cup Qualifiers begin less than 10 days from now, on the 15th of June. Yeah, that’s right. In little over a week the sure and steady process of whittling down 200+ associations to the elite 31 that will join Brazil will begin when Montserrat takes on Belize :mrgreen: Two weeks later, Asia will begin its qualifications by eliminating 8 teams in two-legged ties.

    And soon enough, we’re rolling…

    Also, Africa has come up with the most absurd qualification scheme ever. Seriously, this has to be the most half-baked qualification system ever since back when they just invited countries willy nilly. So after some quick knockouts amongst the bottom teams, there’ll be 10 groups of four (40+!) teams duking it out, UEFA style. That’s not the bad part. The bad part is that the group winners will then square off, the fall before Brazil 2014, in FIVE two-legged knockout ties to determine Africa’s entries into the tournament. Getting the right draw in that battle will be worth millions. Imagine making Ghana and Cote d’Ivoire match up for a place in the finals.

    • Jnice
      June 6, 2011

      Imagine making Ghana and Cote d’Ivoire match up for a place in the finals.

      It would be 5-0 to Ghana :mrgreen:

      • Jnice
        June 6, 2011

        In all seriousness, it really is absurd. A real head-scratcher, that one.

  39. tutomate
    June 6, 2011

    Does anyone know where I can get a blau-grana tie with no Barca shield or with the Barca shield not visible?

    • blitzen
      June 6, 2011

      I’m sure you could find a blue- and red-striped tie at any upscale mens’ clothing store….

  40. Apparently some “journalists” at sport feel rosell was hard done by the complaint filed by the 3 presidenty candidates concerning the announcement of the closure of some sections of Barca. One of them (Joan Vehils) implies that by defying Rosell in like defying Pep and wonders if the 3 losers of the elections as he calls them (disgrace!) will make a complaint if Pep does actually decide to sell Thiago!
    I think Pep after leaving Barca should go to a journalism school in spain and start teaching some ethics!

  41. Jnice
    June 7, 2011

    Bored? Watch a 12 minute Alexis Sanchez compilation. Not saying you should judge him by this (watching full matches is best), it’s just entertaining: http://youtu.be/YMylCSaEGLU

    • iTs a good compilation he seems to have quite good final pass right outside the area. He seems quite creative as well. From what I’ve seen I’m not so impressed with his shooting/finishing. From what I’ve read he appears ro be a good kid as well.
      What I still don’t like though is his pricetag he seems way too expensive.

    • Barka
      June 7, 2011

      AS and Marca are saying that Sanchez is very close to joining us. Sport and EMD are more quiet about this though.

    • can_we_go_Xalvies
      June 7, 2011

      you can watch player vs team videos of Alex on youtube, he looks very interesting playing down the right wing, he never stops running and he can pass really well. Could Pep be thinking he could be the next RWB/RW hybrid?

      Alex’s work rate and dribbling skills stand out the most. He always looks like an outlet on the RW and funnily enough he reminds me of Alves.

      • barca96
        June 7, 2011

        Does he track back and pressure the defenders?

        • Jnice
          June 7, 2011

          He works his arse off. There’s a reason Bielsa recommended him to Pep. He knows what Pep wants. He wouldn’t recommend some lazy, prima donna type player.

    • barca96
      June 7, 2011

      You should help ROsell and the club out in India.

    • Barka
      June 7, 2011

      Jorge Mendes. He’s also the agent of other famous Portugues players such as Deco, Pepe,.. if I remember correctly. Even Mourinho.

      • The__K__Man
        June 7, 2011

        He’s the agent of both Mou and CR7

        • Barka
          June 7, 2011

          Yeah, Marquez too. He’s not the shady kind of agent like fat Raiola though.

      • Thank you guys fow the swift reply! Even wikipedia has a n article on him he seems quite shady and able to sell flops for LOAAADS of money

        “At the 2008 European Championships, Mendes was allowed privileged access to the Portuguese team hotel by the then-manager Luiz Felipe Scolari.In the same year, Mendes handled the deal that took Scolari to Chelsea, negotiating a three-year contract worth between £5.5 million and £6.25 million.”

        Favors for favors…

        • Jnice
          June 7, 2011

          He’s soon to be De Gea’s agent as well. He’s the one that brokered the deal bringing him to Man Utd.

          I’d imagine he’s the richest agent out there followed by Pini Zahavi and Mino Raiola.

  42. June 7, 2011

    Sanchez’ agent is in Barcelona, presumably not to take a Gaudi tour and have a xocolata.

    • Vj
      June 7, 2011

      Apparently he’ll be off to Juve on Saturday. Quite an industrious fellow..

      • barca96
        June 7, 2011

        If he really wanted to join us, he would’ve instructed his agent not to shop him around.

        Now my feelings (Pep style hehe) for him are diminishing. At least with Rossi, we only hear positive things from his team mates and coach.

        • Jnice
          June 7, 2011

          So let me get this straight.

          He is supposed to bank his hopes on only one club? He obviously prefers Barça-that much is clear. The president of Udinese has said it’s his preferred destination. Still, Sanchez knows Barça has other targets, like Rossi, why would he tell his agent not to look at offers from other clubs?

          Also, he knows that just because he may agree terms with Barça, doesn’t mean Udinese will agree terms with Barça.

          Why should he put all his eggs in one basket?

          About the players/coach thing-we hear so much about Rossi b/c his they are asked about him. They don’t come out and say “Rossi will be perfect for Barça” without being asked. If you asked the Udinese about Sanchez, I’m sure we’d all hear the same positive things being said for Rossi.

    • just listenin
      June 7, 2011

      Saw that on barcastuff – looks like things are progressing, and we look to be in the lead. I think Sanchez would add a great dimension to the attack, good on the ball, good last pass, reads the play well. The thought of him joining is exciting. We’re going to need a strong rotational attack that adapts to different styles with the schedule being no easier next year.

      Sport and MD are running headlines today that we’re going for all three Sanchez, Rossi and Fabregas (I believe his return is inevitable), and that loans and sales will be considered to fund it, but that’s Sport and MD. However, it’s starting to look a little like this scenario could happen with a lot of smoke and maybe fire around Thiago, Bojan, loans/sales w/buy backs. It’s also being leaked that we won’t sign a CB, which bothers me for some reason despite the amount of depth and strength that Cruyff outlined in his recent article around the position due to Abidal and Mascherano stepping in and up this year – I don’t know if it is the lack of a true center back, or just the loss in “stability” that seems to come when the captain is not anchoring the line and shouting “Focus!” at Pique. Not sure what it is, but something about it bothers me.

  43. June 7, 2011

    One of the newspapers in Chile is reporting that during an interview with Franco Soldati, the president of Udinese, Soldati stated that Sanchez and Barca have definitely agreed to personal terms – 3M/year on a 4 year deal with an option.

    He also said that the negotiations between the club are ongoing but that’s what remains.

    We still have to wait and see – but Sanchez is an immensely gifted footballer. He’s going to have to go through a significant adjustment period but he’s very talented and still very young. Even if it takes him a year to adjust he’ll be 23 and still have the best years of his career in front of him.

    This signing – especially if it includes Bojan somehow – is not gong to be enough though.

    They need 5 true forwards + Afellay headed into next season. Jeffren can’t be relied on and will possibly not even be here. And it’s difficult to know what we’ll get out of Bojan if he stays.

    So Sanchez would make forward #4 assuming Bojan goes out on loan.

    They still need to get another forward – Rossi would be great.

    • Jnice
      June 7, 2011

      According to @alcalacope Rossi’s agent has just entered the Barça offices for an ‘important meeting’.

      We’ll see what happens, but I don’t think we can afford both.

      • Jnice
        June 7, 2011

        @alcalacope is Juan Antonio Alcala, journalist that works for Cadena Cope, by the way.

      • just listenin
        June 7, 2011

        Seems like this is where the press is trying to do the math by taking the existing transfer fund and adding Bojan, Thiago and Jeffren at 12M, 9-10M, and 7M respectively + Maxwell, and Milito to get to around 100M transfer kitty, or somewhere on the order of three sizable signings – that seems like a little double counting though if we’re offering less cash + players against market value like some of the scenarios suggest. Getting curiouser and curiouser.

    • Jnice
      June 7, 2011

      I love Ramzi. I think I’ve told him this 100 times on twitter. That was an easy K.O. And someone actually had the nerve to call him a troll, ha.

      • jordi™
        June 7, 2011

        Ramzi is like a Katana but with smiley face stickers.

      • Vj
        June 7, 2011

        I am someone who is secured enough to exchange opinions, respect the other point of view, and interested in football in general instead of trying desperately to create my own delusional bubble with infectious effect while having a phobia that maybe an outsider will come and scratch it so it burst (And I am answering your question: who am I).

        Ramzi lays the hammer..
        ..like a freakin’ Boss!

  44. flyzowee
    June 7, 2011

    @ jnice

    Comfirmation about Sanchez workrate is all ive been dying to here all this time in the midst of all this talk about his skill etc etc.

    All that stuff dont matter to me tbh.
    If he can run for 90min then i say we stick in an extra 3mill for gud measure.

    Too many lazy forwards in the game for me.

    But i believe there will be one last dive for Rossi just to show villareal that we da puto jefe or is it jefe puto?
    In any case we da boss!!

    What

    • flyzowee
      June 7, 2011

      I was gonna ask what languages he spoke?

      • Jnice
        June 7, 2011

        Sanchez runs and works hard all game.

        What languages does Rossi speak? English, Italian, and Spanish.

  45. K_legit
    June 7, 2011

    @ the whole Ramzi vs Inter mod guy argument
    I just take relish in the fact that if (and I want this to happen badly now) Inter face Barcelona in the CL next season, there is going to be some butthurt nerazzuros at the end of it..that I have faith in 🙂

  46. Whatever
    June 7, 2011

    If we could get Sanchez, Rossi and Fabregas as Sport suggests, that would be amazing. Amazing. But I think all that would cost us around €100-110m, which is probably too much for our financial department.

  47. Roz
    June 7, 2011

    The Inter offside is just one big black ball of hate. It’s disgusting really but im glad Ramzi taught that MAD idiot a thing or two. Its like he thinks that comment board is just for Inter fans and no one else. And since when are we “masters of the universe”. Pathetic really.

    • Barcaleya
      June 7, 2011

      Is there a link to this?

      I am now so curious and want to read what Ramzi did/say.

      Thanks!

    • Barcaleya
      June 7, 2011

      Wow! That InterMAD person is a dimwit.

      Thankfully, Ramzi is cool, calm, collected and super smart.

      Sometimes I hate reading blogsites cause it makes my blood boil when people totally lose perspective and take even objective and informative discussion as a personal attack against them and what they post. And then, when they don’t like what people say in their site – they tell them to go to other sites. Duh? Even if you own the site, you have to be able to take civil discussions since you opened your blog to the public. Otherwise, just stay on email and send messages to your private friends.

      Ramzi was only talking about our need for more forwards. Bojan was ineffective and/or injured this whole season (same with Jeffren) so it’s true that we hardly had subs for MVP. Given that we play with lots of pressing, our forwards get exhausted more than those of other teams who are not expected to press or track back as often we do. Villa towards the end of the season was obviously tired and we can see what a fresh and rested Villa can do at the CL finals and the Spain friendly.

      We compete on so many fronts, plus almost all our players are internationals, so they hardly have any rest. We do need as many players and world-class ones for rotation.

      And none of the Inter blog people seem to get this. InterMAD was just completely off-tangent as his mind was filled with haze just by seeing Barca people/posts. Others – I guess they don’t really know our squad? They think we have enough? And in their minds, everything we do is meant to hurt them. As in – Why do we need to buy a player they’re interested in?

      Anyway – wow. Sometimes, I also feel like leaving messages and correcting wrong facts/misconceptions on other sites but I get tired just thinking about it. So glad there is Ramzi and others who take the time to do this. Even if the non-Barca posters spout all sorts of vitriol, I would like to think that what we write (if well-said and objective) will plant seeds in their mind and at least give them something to think about even if we don’t necessarily convince or convert them. Just a balanced view would be nice.

  48. ciaran
    June 7, 2011

    With our financial situation, I can’t see Rossell letting Bojan go and spending €30million on a replacement. I think Cesc’s move will definitely happen but I can’t see Rossi and Sanchez both joining us. I wouldn’t imagine Bojan will leave this summer, meaning that Rossi’s move would be less likely than Sanchez’s.

    Bojan has only ever really functioned as a no.9 and Messi is always going to be the first choice and will play every possible game so there isn’t as much need for a central striker. Villa can cover centrally also.

    Picking any 3 from Messi, Villa, Pedro, Sanchez, Afellay and Bojan is a nice headache for Pep.
    Picking 3 more from Xavi, Iniesta, Busquets, Cesc, Keita, Mascherano & Thiago is also more trouble. That is probably a harder one meaning that it is possible that the Mascherano may play most of the season as a centre back.

    The main issues then maybe the left back position. Adriano has done well but I’d still prefer Abidal. Add to that, Dani has little cover at right back Adriano may be stretched. Maxwell seems unwanted and Coentrao prefers EE. Where does that leave us?

    • Roz
      June 7, 2011

      Enrique from Newcastle. He has had a good season in the EPL and he is stalling on signing a new contract. Solid spanish leftback and he could be good for Barca imo.

      • Vj
        June 7, 2011

        Yes, he had a good season, after about 2-3 mediocre ones – one in the Championship. I wouldn’t call him solid at the back either. No one from Newcastle from the recent years is solid at the back..

  49. Eklavya
    June 7, 2011

    I don’t mind seeing Bojan including in any deal, although I prefer if it’s Jeffren. Our squad will still remain a bit short since we will be trading a forward for a forward. That is, unless we also somehow get Rossi. Now that would be cool.

    Forget Cesc, save 50M and use 2M on Botia instead. And some for Jose Angel.

  50. June 7, 2011

    It’s getting hot and heavy: (all via various Twitter sources):

    Udinese says that Alexis’ Sanchez agent has informed them he’s agreed personal terms with Barca. Clubs still negotiating a transfer fee.

    Franco Soldati (president Udinese): “His agent told us that Sanchez has a deal with Barcelona..3M a season.”

    Soldati: “The clubs closest to signing Alexis Sanchez are Barcelona, Juventus, and Inter. I think there will be a deal at the end of June.”

    Rossi’s agent has just entered the Barça offices for an ‘important meeting’

    Soldati: “We’re now starting talks with Barcelona. We know Alexis’ wish is to join Barça but we’ll see if we can also find a deal with them”

    • Eklavya
      June 7, 2011

      Now there are denial reports from their official site or something.

  51. Humphrey Bogart
    June 7, 2011

    I do not get these interistas? What is their problem? They did beat us last year on their way to the CL win, but still can not let go. Maybe it is this aura thing they are commenting about in this offside article. They did win the CL last year but are already as good as forgotten, and everybody is talking about Barca again

    • Vj
      June 7, 2011

      Its not from the CL win, it precedes that. They (that board) despised us after we won the CL in 09 not sure from where the hostility came from. And then after they ‘beat’ us, it was soon forgotten because of the WC. And in between Mou left them high and dry just having won the CL. They couldn’t emulate us with the 5 trophies and all and got duly ‘rewarded’ with Benitez.

      I think its misdirected anger, acting out on us. Couple the fact that their success in Europe sounds more like an aberration with all the adulation given to us, no wonder they want something to vent their spleen at..

  52. Mila
    June 7, 2011

    Statement Udinese president Soldati: “There’s also no meeting scheduled between the clubs to discuss a transfer.” [udinese.it]
    »
    barcastuff
    Statement Udinese president Soldati: “Statements attributed to me have no foundation. There’s no deal with Barcelona on Alexis Sanchez.”

    Guess we’ll have to wait some more 🙁

    • June 7, 2011

      Note that he is fixing the notion that agreeing to personal terms means that a deal is done. Players and clubs agree all the time, then it’s up to the selling/buying clubs to work it out.

      Dealing with Udinese is like dealing with Sevilla, by the by. It ain’t gonna be easy.

  53. Humphrey Bogart
    June 7, 2011

    I do not get VdB: Alonso was supporting the EE in the Busi smear campaign and as a present get the armband, why does he not make Marchena Captain or Villa?, always somebody from the EE, I have never seen somebody of our guys seen wearing it for Spain, even if Barca is providing the most players

    At least VV gets a cap

  54. just listenin
    June 7, 2011

    These silly season rides are fun! It’s like an amusement park

    • soccermomof4
      June 7, 2011

      No it’s not! I don’t like the silly season ride 🙁
      I don’t I don’t I don’t… *throws fit and stamps feet in childish petulance*
      Wake me when it’s over and tell me the (hopefully) good news 🙂

  55. blitzen
    June 7, 2011

    Not to spoil it for anyone, but my sentimental favourite team Faroe Islands is up 1-0 over Estonia at HT.

    Go Faroes!!!! 😀

      • blitzen
        June 7, 2011

        Still 20+ minutes to go, but Estonia had a man sent off.

  56. soccermomof4
    June 7, 2011

    Anyone know what time the Ven v Esp game is?

    Can’t find it anywhere so I’m hoping for links when the time approaches 🙁

    • blitzen
      June 7, 2011

      The Guardian site says it is at 21:30 pm, I assume that would be Venezuela time?

  57. Eklavya
    June 7, 2011

    A lot of people don’t like the transfer season. I do.

  58. blitzen
    June 7, 2011

    And some Big Angry Swede appears to have scored a hat-trick.

      • soccermomof4
        June 7, 2011

        Why the Faroe Islands love? Just asking. Did I miss anything?

        • blitzen
          June 7, 2011

          Why NOT the Faroe Islands? 😀

          Because they are small (pop. 45,000) and live in the middle of the ocean and they still manage to field a somewhat decent football team.

    • soccermomof4
      June 7, 2011

      Oh Joy…what rapture…what heavenly bliss…whatever 🙂

  59. JoachimD
    June 7, 2011

    Does anybody have inside info on Barca B and other youth players? I read at Total Barça that 5 Barça B players left (considering their age understandable). Lots of people during Silly Season want Barça to buy this and that but Barça B had a great year last year. Are their any players realistically going to be promoted to the 1st team?

    JDS, Fontas, Bartra, Thiago, Montoya and what about Soriano as back-up for Villa? Or is Bojan a better player? I have no idea myself, just curious. Just hoping we don´t regret ourselves buying expensive players that would turn out to have the same impact as our reserve players. If we get Sanchez or Rossi, I can imagine that Jeffren will move the other way (good player for most sides but Barça is gruelling).

    Last question, do we really need a Sakho or Willian? I think Pique, Abidal, Fontas & Puyol should be enough for CB. Maybe Willian or a similar player for a decent price to give competition to Adriano at LB? What about back-up for Daniel Alves? Is their player at the reserves that could step up?

    • soccermomof4
      June 7, 2011

      There’s supposed to be some “top secret” BFB Bteam/youth team scouting task force. Waiting patiently for report….

        • JoachimD
          June 7, 2011

          Oh great. Dr. Evil is our head BFB Bteam/youth scout? Or is it Gollum (or whatever his name was from Lord of the Rings)? 😉

    • Vj
      June 7, 2011

      Isn’t there a project about it going on?

    • blitzen
      June 7, 2011

      Thiago and Fontas have pretty much already been promoted, and I frankly don’t believe any of the rumours about including Thiago in a deal with another club.

      JDS, Bartra, and Montoya are all good players but not ready to be promoted IMO. I expect they will all get some first-team playing time in the coming season as part of their development plans.

      Soriano had a great season and deserves to move to a first team…just not at Barcelona. Rumour is that Luis Enrique will take him to Roma. I just don’t ultimately think he is good enough to fit in seamlessly with the likes of Messi, Villa, and Pedro.

      • JoachimD
        June 7, 2011

        Thanks for the great reply, blitzen. So do you think Bojan is a better player than Soriano as a back-up striker?

        Also, I really do not think Bojan should play the wings as Pedro, Messi, Affelay and the rumoured signings of Rossi or Sanchez are better in this position, my humble opinion.

        • blitzen
          June 7, 2011

          This season’s performance notwithstanding, I do actually think Bojan is a better player for Barca than Soriano. He knows the system inside-out, has oodles of talent, and is willing to adapt to whatever position Pep plays him in (although you are correct, he is best as a CF not on the wings).

  60. rico
    June 7, 2011

    Off subject but has anyone noticed that the US official store is closed. Anyone know what that’s about?

    • soccermomof4
      June 7, 2011

      barcastuff barcastuff
      Line-up Spain (vs Venezuela): Valdes – Iraola Albiol Marchena Arbeloa – XabiAlonso Busquets Iniesta – Pedro Llorente Villa #fcblive

  61. blitzen
    June 7, 2011

    Looks like the Spain/Venezuela game is starting now. I won’t get to see it.

    • Blow-Grenade
      June 7, 2011

      Blitzen, this is the best summer day in TO. What are you doing on your computer? I’m torn between Spain and catching some sun. I think Ill go for the sun.

      • momo
        June 7, 2011

        Are you kidding me, yesterday was waaaaay better!

      • blitzen
        June 7, 2011

        Some of us have to work for a living, Blow-G. :roll:

        It was too humid for me anyway.

  62. soccermomof4
    June 7, 2011

    eee gads- Barca players in white again–makes my skin crawl 🙂

    save VV in the first minute

  63. June 7, 2011

    I have a feeling we will sign Sanchez, Rossi and Cesc. Bojan, Jeffren, Milito, Maxwell and maybe Thiago will be sold. I would love Sanzhez and Rossi, it would make our strike force without equal in world football. It would also provide the depth we need to rest a lot of the big boys much more often and we all saw how much better a rested Villa is. Next season is going to be really tough. Madrid are only going to get better and we have a hell of a lot of games to play. We could definitely use the players.

    Cesc I am not sold on, but he wants to leave, we want to buy him and I think Arsenal have to come to terms with the fact they have to sell. I just hope they price him too high for the deal to materialise.

    • Vj
      June 7, 2011

      All three? :O Too risky, too expensive, not good if Thiago is sold. Any one from Rossi and Sanchez and we’re good, so seems the consensus.

      And our strike force is already without equal..

    • JoachimD
      June 7, 2011

      Agree with VJ. I don´t think we will go for Cesc this year, too expensive and not super important for our team at the moment. As Thiago, Affelay and Keita can play these positions when necessary (CDR for example). Besides his contract ends in 2013? So I think Barça can get a good deal next year and Xavi would be a year older also. Perhaps, in 2 years time Fabregas could be a first team player with Iniesta and Xavi becoming more a squad player. Who knows.

      Rossi and Sanchez would be insane to buy both, breaking the bank. One of those would be fine. It seems, our Barça B fullbacks are not ready to be promoted as cover for the up-coming season, so I reckon Barça should look into strengthening these areas (LB & RB) as Maxwell will probably be leaving.

  64. Vj
    June 7, 2011

    Whats with the obsession with white? Last I checked it was La Furia Roja and not Blanco :S

  65. soccermomof4
    June 7, 2011

    Goal Villa FK at least 25 yards out

  66. momo
    June 7, 2011

    Villa does his best TB impression. What a freekick!!! Why doesn’t he take ours again?

    • Ryan
      June 7, 2011

      He should definitely be above Alves in the FK order!

    • Vj
      June 7, 2011

      He like to watch Dani deposit them to Row Z..

    • blitzen
      June 7, 2011

      Because Messi is good at them too and Dani is a “free-kick specialist” according to his bio. 🙁

  67. momo
    June 7, 2011

    VdB better take iniesta off, these guys are playing like its a final.

  68. soccermomof4
    June 7, 2011

    Spain’s back line looks shaky- it wouldn’t surprise me if Venezuela gets one

    • Humphrey Bogart
      June 7, 2011

      Albiol and Arbeloa are terrible, VdB should pray that Puyi and Capdevilla have an other tournament in their legs

    • Ryan
      June 7, 2011

      Valdes is gonna do his best to prevent that!

  69. Helge
    June 7, 2011

    What a difference such an important and beautiful CL final goal makes, he? 🙂

    David Villa plays with the same desire and confidence as he used to do. El Guaje is back!
    Please preserve the shape for the complete next season.

  70. Vj
    June 7, 2011

    Its getting rough out there.. Isn’t this a ‘friendly’?

  71. Barcaleya
    June 7, 2011

    So great. Earlier it was all Barca – Iniesta, Busquets, Villa to Pedro.

  72. soccermomof4
    June 7, 2011

    0-3 goal that EE guy I used to think was OK Alonso

    • Barcaleya
      June 7, 2011

      Haha. Same thought here soma4.

      I truly loved him before. From way back Real Sociedad time. How easily Mou has rubbed off on him is terrible.

      • blitzen
        June 7, 2011

        I unfortunately have to agree. Mou has ruined Xabi for me. 🙁

  73. Para
    June 7, 2011

    Just caught onto the game in time to see that Villa came off for Silva (I think?). I’ve seen the original line-up, but have there been any other changes from that?

    • Barcaleya
      June 7, 2011

      Villa, Iniesta and Xabi (I think) came out for Silva, Cazorla and Manu del Moral.

  74. Ryan
    June 7, 2011

    Is that a new move Pedro pulled just now? I’ve never seen him try any tricks, rather than just running and maybe a stepover or two.

    • Ryan
      June 7, 2011

      Looks like he wanted to put as much power as possible… if it plays out like the US game, since he just missed a sitter, Torres will now score in a few more minutes. 😛

      • Barcaleya
        June 7, 2011

        I hope so. He should score even for these non-bearing games. It will help him a lot. I want his confidence back for the Euros!

        • Ryan
          June 7, 2011

          Doh, all he did was mess up another 1v1.

          He better find his form again, as there are so many players chomping at the bit to get some playing time.

  75. soccermomof4
    June 7, 2011

    I’ve lost count of how many times VV has saved Spain’s back line’s butts.

    • Barcaleya
      June 7, 2011

      Yeah. Great save too! Ugh. Iker si coming in….

  76. Barcaleya
    June 7, 2011

    I take our boys for granted so much.

    I can’t believe that for all that we think Pique doesn’t focus enough…I realize now how much more faith I have in him than any of these guys now playing defense for Spain.

    Then I’m wondering how the balls seem to get lost more quickly….and I realize it’s because it’s not Xavi or Iniesta or Messi who have the ball at their feet. And why does Spain have less possession? Again, it’s Spain and not Barca.

    • Ryan
      June 7, 2011

      But it’s Spain without Xaviniesta. With them in the team they swallow up tons of possession and never give up leads.

      • Barcaleya
        June 7, 2011

        Yes, yes, exactly. But I watch Spain sometimes thinking that it’s Barca too. And since it’s in a tiny stream screen…I forgot that Xavi/Iniesta aren’t there. And esp in the 2nd half, I was irritated at how little possession we have. Then I realized they weren’t there. And of course, defense was bad cause there was no Puyi and Pique.

        But oh well. It will do 😀

      • Ryan
        June 7, 2011

        At least the shaky defense allowed VV to display his skills. 😀

        • Barcaleya
          June 7, 2011

          True. Would have been awesome terrible if Iker let in a goal….

          Jeffren should have played for Venezuela. I’m sure he will have a place. Unlike at Spain.

  77. June 7, 2011

    Re: Inter board stuff

    I think it’s been well documented that that place is a angry ball of hate, not worth our worry. The key is to not judge Inter and its fans based on the few trash fans (like the Inter Offside bloggers) that you encounter. I don’t know where it comes from, though I agree with Xavi’s comment that just 6 months after they won the UCL nobody talked about Inter. Even at the beginning of the season, Barca still considered the best team in Europe. And by now, absolutely nobody cares or talks about that treble-winning Inter team. Maybe that’s what continues to grind their gears, and it’s why interistas talk about Barcelona more than cules ever talk about Inter.

    Also, Ramzi is boss 😀

    • Barcaleya
      June 7, 2011

      Yes. Also the kind of people who populate a site is determined by how the site is set up. If there’s a lot of hating and is condoned, guess most threads will be of that flavor and persuasion.

      Surely there are Inter fans who are balanced and could appreciate the way Barca plays.

      It just boggles the mind how some people just spew hate non-stop until they have no sense of objectivity left. They don’t even say it as a joke, the way they do. They positively seethe with vile and venom. This at RM blog as well.

      We get really angry too but mostly justified, I think. Oh well. And I don’t mean to come off “goodie” which is what they hate us for. We all get mad as much as they do. But I don’t think we’ve ever lost balance nor have unjustly attacked them the way they do us. Whatever 😀

      Let’s just be happy with our team and continue supporting them and let’s all stick together. Who else could we share all these happiness and pride with? Everyone else just wants to make us miserable.

      • Barcaleya
        June 7, 2011

        **the way WE do** ack! so many mistakes

      • June 7, 2011

        This at RM blog as well.

        The new RM blog is not like this at all, I find. Sure some are just stupidly irrational when it comes to Barca, but the environment is generally very, very pleasant. It used to be real bad, months ago, until Bassam and Corey laid down the law (they also had a similar “hammer-laying” clean up years ago, I think).

        I think popular sites like the Offside can easily attract hateful posters, and that can ruin the discussion for everyone. The Inter site is the extreme example of this, because they seem to hate everybody, Roma, Juve, Milan, Barca, everybody seems to elicit vitriolic reactions.

        We get really angry too but mostly justified, I think.

        That’s why I keep coming back. Some of us might become stupidly irrational sometimes, but the community quietly corrects it. We never collectively become unhinged. Maybe I have. When it comes to Arsenal. But hey! I still like them.

        • Barcaleya
          June 7, 2011

          Oh, is the new RM blog better now? Haven’t been in a while. Andres and some regulars were being irrational the past posts I’ve read. They’re still going on and on about Busi and how we dive and cheat without them ever acknowledging their own diving and kicking and stomping.

          I also mentioned to Bassam [here in our blog] that I thought they didn’t treat Barca posters well in their new blog whereas we welcome him/others here. Sometimes they’re very rude to the few Barca supporters who leave comments. He said it’s because they also have a lot of trolls, etc.

          Anyway – I don’t know why I even bother to drop by other sites, really. Except for the Man U one linked by someone here – they were all praises for FCB after their loss. Amazing. That was nice to read 😀

          • Barcaleya
            June 7, 2011

            Oh – haha. That’s bad form from us then.

            I wasn’t reading this blog then. I only started after the World Cup, I think.

      • Vj
        June 7, 2011

        Here’s the thing, usually the posters are the ones who spout poison, the mods are the sane ones, but for that board, its the opposite. The posters are objective, some like us, but what can I say, the mods must be MAD..

  78. Ryan
    June 7, 2011

    Anyone about to watch the USA-Canada game? It’ll be a rude shock seeing the hoof and hope style after watching good soccer all afternoon, but let’s go USA!

    • blitzen
      June 7, 2011

      I love hate the fact that I am in Canada and can only find a Spanish feed for this game.

    • Barcaleya
      June 7, 2011

      Ryan – there’s your USA goal.

      So many long balls and how bad is Canada? Sorry to all Canadians here!

      I say this in relation to how I used I am to seeing Barca play. Now everyone is bad. I can’t understand now when players can’t keep possession [unless it’s our opponents, of course] and when they have so many turnovers. Bad, bad Barca. So spoiled for beautiful football.

        • Barcaleya
          June 7, 2011

          Yes, blitz. Sorry.

          I mean – how can US look so good now (granted they didn’t have their best players last Saturday) when they looked like sh*te against Spain?!

          I don’t think Canada have strung three passes together…

          • Ryan
            June 7, 2011

            Donovan adds a lot to the team. Nobody else on the US team really has that eye for the pass or the quick counter, in my opinion.

            Also, Bradley and Dempsey I believe were added in the 2nd half vs Spain, and after that Spain only added one more goal. There’s no excusing that first half vs Spain tho… it should have been 4-0, had it not been for Silva’s goal being called offside.

            The US look semi-decent out there, as long as you keep Barca far from your mind! The teenage Agudelo is impressing; it’s always nice but surprising when a player decides to play for the US rather than his previous country/country of his parents.

          • blitzen
            June 7, 2011

            I bet Faroe Islands could beat Canada. 🙁

          • Barcaleya
            June 8, 2011

            Ryan – where is Agudelo from?

            If he came from a country that has tons of good players and you think there is a slim chance of making it to the NT, then might as well play for the US, right? You’d be the best among not-so-good players and it’s a well-supported team compared to other NTs.

            Yeah, Donovan is okay and Bradley and Dempsey too. But Spain in the 2nd half didnt have Xavi and Iniesta either. So kinda evens out 😀

  79. momo
    June 7, 2011

    Why wasn’t Messi born Canadian? WHYYYYYY??

  80. momo
    June 7, 2011

    Oh Canada… (sigh)

    Also my ears are bleeding, one of the commentators is trying to convince us that Tim Howard is one of the TOP 5 goalkeepers in the world…

    • June 7, 2011

      Univision is streaming all the Gold Cup matches for free on its website, great quality, decent (inoffensive) Spanish commentary. I think they’ll be doing the same for the Copa America too. Love Univision.

      And that’s FT. Damn Canada.

  81. Lev
    June 7, 2011

    @momo (and Kari) (and Blitzen, I think)

    Canada will never be a good soccer country. 6 months of snow a year means your kids simply can’t practice enough.

    But at least you are good at hockey, eh?

Leave a Reply