News of Recently: It’s Alexis Fever in Barcelona!

Barca new boy Alexis Sanchez is in Barcelona amid rabid fans, fainting women, and frothing press, ignoring the world so hard Messi would be proud. (That might be a slight — *watches video again* — accurate depiction of events). He laid low in the club shop for a couple of moments before tackling his way through the madness, with agent Fernando Felicevich leading the way, to get to his ride to safety. A random journalist screamed out, “Hey Alexis! I got a movie proposal for ya! ‘A Car Too Far!’ Whaddya say?!” while a young girl was caught sobbing uncontrollably, “I am never washing my hand ever again!”

Alexis starts training tomorrow with Leo Messi, Dani Alves, Javier Mascherano, and Adriano at 9:00am BCN time.

– In other news, we have a game tomorrow! “Really?!” you ask excitedly. Yes, really! It’s the most important match in the history of ever! “Wow! I wonder why I haven’t heard of it!” you wonder. That’s because it’s so great the best of the rest of our B-team and some Juvenil A players will be playing in it. “Yaay — wait, what?!” you demand. Yeah! The semi final of la Copa Catalunya can’t just be played by anyone. We need some true Barca DNA and Catalaness and okay, there is international friendlies and a SuperCopa and we can’t risk our first team and awesome B-team players for it, alright?

– Speaking of internationals, the FIFA virus has hit with aplomb. We have 11 first team players called up for their respective national teams to play on Wednesday:

Spain (against Italy in Bari*): Thiago, Xavi, Iniesta, Villa, Busi, Pedro!, Valdes, Pique
Brazil (against Germany in Stuttgart): Alves
Chile (against France in Montpellier): Sanchez
France (against Chile in Montpellier): Abidal

The price of having incredible players. *harrowing sigh*

Obviously the matches to watch are Chile v France for Abidal vs Alexis and Spain for Thiago’s debut. Dani just needs to stretch his legs and not get injured.

*Interestingly enough, Bari is in the same province in Italy as Thiago’s birthplace of San Pietro Vernotico. Only a couple of kilometers away.

– On the subject of international matches, Spain U-20 is kicking some arses and taking names. Their latest opponents victims were Australia, as they beat them 5-1 with all goals coming in the first half. Our boy Sergi Roberto got on the scoresheet (in the first minute 8) ) and played the full 90 along with new signing Kiko Femenia, while team captain Marc Bartra put in a half before being subbed off for Barca B teammate Carles Planas.

Spain’s next match is against South Korea in the round of 16 on, get this, Wednesday.

– Lost Brazilian singer/footballer Keirisson is in Barcelona. He will train with the B-team until the club finds him another team to play for, according to RAC1.

Some Interesting Articles to Read This Week:

(Note: Stories/Opinions listed are not necessarily ones I support/oppose).

On the club:

“Fernando Palomo, who calls La Liga matches and is covering the tour for ESPN Deportes, gets bushwhacked by fans requests for autographs and more. For now, Palomo, is the closest the Culé fans get to the players.” Keyvan Antonio Heydari of The New York Times gives us a look into Barca’s American Tour.

John Kerr talks depth and Barcelona in the Pep era. Part One, Two, and Three.

For lulz: CL 2011/2012 ‘Dream Team’ to beat us by David Pleat of The Guardian.

On players:

Not really an article so much as a translated GQ Italia interview of King Abidal. (Wonderful, wonderful read and a big thank you to the translators at fcb_livejournal for their hard work!)

John Kerr is back and dicussing how Alexis Sanchez will fit into our attack. Part One and Two.

A nice tribute of sorts for Andreu Fontas amid the Thiago furor by Rob Paton on A Different League.

On the Fabregas to Barca Transfer Saga:

James Lawton of The Independant gives his take on la novela épica Fabregas, Wenger, and the consequences for Arsenal.

Rory Mackay adds his opinion in the Fabregas fray with tactics thrown in on NewsTime. (Warning: Thiago-Nani WTF comparison present).

Ibrahim Ayyub calls for Fabregas to end it all on Simply Football.

Categorized as Team News

By Kari

Just your neighbourhood Barca fanatic


  1. Alexis Sanchez is a rock star! Can’t imagine what it will be like when he scores his first goal at the Camp Nou.

  2. -Well at least he learned his lesson not to wear anything white 🙂

    -@Blitzen & Jnice

    Blitzen is right. Why would Pep keep on playing Carmona in all these matches while he had “better” options like Espinosa, Riverola?? I myself don’t get it but there must be something that we don’t see. I guess it’s his hustle. Look at him. He continues to run and run. I guess that is what Pep likes. Similar to Pedro. I am beginning to like him.

    I really feel sorry for this guy for the way the club is treating him. Just let him stay and give him a chance!! Oh, and a pay raise. He deserves it!

    No one can reject an offer to be part of the first team. I wouldn’t have doubts. I wouldn’t mind staying at the B-team either.

    It’s not just this comment but all of his comments are really nice. And look what happened to Nolito. He continues scoring goal left and right.

  3. Blitzen is right. Why would Pep keep on playing Carmona in all these matches while he had “better” options like Espinosa, Riverola?? I myself don’t get it but there must be something that we don’t see. I guess it’s his hustle. Look at him. He continues to run and run. I guess that is what Pep likes. Similar to Pedro. I am beginning to like him.

    Sorry, but I can’t agree.

    Pep is playing Carmona because he’s 24 and knows he has no shot with the first team. He’s giving him a chance he would otherwise not have when the regular season comes around. Also, Riverola and Espinosa don’t play on the wings where Carmona usually plays when he gets in. Armando played in some matches last pre-season, but we all knew he had no shot with the first team. It’s no different in this case.

    You can like who you want, but I don’t see what there is to like. He works hard, cool, but so do most of the players that step on the pitch for us. Apart from working hard, there’s no comparison to Pedro. Pedro can finish, Pedro has pace, Pedro thinks quickly, etc. He made a couple of nice passes during pre-season and worked hard, but dude isn’t good enough. You should’ve seen him in training when the team was in Maryland. He doesn’t think or move quickly enough as the rest of the team.

    And if the dude couldn’t hack it on the B team last year, how is he supposed to be our new Pedro? I’m sure I sound mean and it seems like I have an agenda against the guy, but this is just how I see it.

    1. I’m sure I sound mean and it seems like I have an agenda against the guy, but this is just how I see it.

      Jmean is in the house yo! 😛

      I agree with all your points, I don’t see Carmona as the new Pedro or the new-whoever-it-is. he’s noot good enough, imo.

    2. Pep is playing Carmona because he’s 24 and knows he has no shot with the first team. He’s giving him a chance he would otherwise not have when the regular season comes around

      Are you saying Pep prefers giving chances to players who don’t have a chance come regular season? Isn’t it better to give chances to players who could actually have a chance and break into the team instead of someone who has no hope at all?

      If that is the case, I would rather Pep play a player on the wings who actually does have a chance as an experiment, like what is happening to JDS.

      Also, Riverola and Espinosa don’t play on the wings where Carmona usually plays when he gets in.

      If I were Pep, I would try that out as an experiment and since our midfield is stacked, they might as well be versatile in order to have playing time in the future.

    3. Jnice’s comments tend to be sarcastic. He does have a different perspective on things though. This one is a classic example.

  4. For the Dream Team to beat us in the Guardian, David Pleat’s team: Petr Cech; Sergio Ramos, Lúcio, Vincent Kompany, Ashley Cole; Javier Zanetti, Steven Gerrard, Wesley Sneijder; Cristiano Ronaldo, Carlos Tevez, Wayne Rooney. That team would get ripped to shreds. Gerrard of recent seasons, or Gerrard at all? He’s neither defensively airtight no technically impeccable, and he’s regressed enormously recently. And Ramos gets ripped to shreds every time he plays us. And six EPL players in here? Hahaha not unexpected.

    The commenter moBbad’s team is a much better bet, Cech; Arbeloa Pepe Carvalho Cole; Zanetti Cambiasso; Sneijder; Tevez Aguero Rooney. So he picked Arbeloa Pepe and Carvalho cos they could kick the crap out of our players and get away with it, but that is a good point, the Inter mids were good in the 2010 semis, and Aguero is a good shout. They’d have to play defensively and kick us around of course but a far far better shot than EPL 6+5 XI feat Steven Gerrard.

    1. Sneijder and Gerrard vs Busquets and the Xavi, Iniesta, Messi triangle in midfield?


  5. Thank you for the links Kari.

    I saw a couple of links of a blog of Barcelona (not as great as this one though). Could you guys pass me some links?

  6. I bet Alexis was shock with the reception he got yesterday…

    welcome to FC Barcelona land, Alexis! get used to it! 😀

    1. I didn’t know Australia also used the word bum. Good info to know before college (hopefully).

      Fun seeing Leo and Dani hang out together in real life, especially being all James Bond on a jetski… Wa-wa-waaait is that a cigarette in Leo’s mouth in image 3 (and 8)?

    2. Looks like food more than a cig b/c of how it looks in his mouth. Otherwise, he doesn’t know to smoke one properly.

    3. That cig lookalike scared me at first as well…but its too big and too green for that. Plus his face looks more like he is eating a lollipop 😉

    4. Of course it’s a lollipop! There are lots of pics around testifying to Leo’s love of lollies.

    5. outerspacedout: If you go to Australia or New Zealand, NEVER use the word “fanny” to describe a bottom/bum/posterior. It is slang for another part of the female anatomy!

    6. Now I am finally convinced that the rumours of Messi and Antonella having split up are wrong 🙂

    7. continuing from K_Legit

      doesn’t suit her face! 🙂

      She has this cute tiny little face…

  7. Loyalty extends both ways and the club should extend it to Soriano as well. I personally really like him, he was one of the upcoming stars for the pericos but then abandoned by them. Barca B picked him up and he trusted them enough to go to the tricera and the relationship between club and player has helped them both.

    Now he is injured and cannot get the best deal he would have due to last season’s high. He needs to be showcased with the senior team – if for nothing else then to reward his contribution.

    In news that no one else cares about – Mainz played really well to a) Get the lead and then hold on to it against Neverkusen. Fluid in transitioning between attack and defense and quite quick, dare I say they have improved over last season. Bayern were well, what can you say about a team that loses to relegation battlers. There is hope, though.

    Moving on to Ajax- That team looks completely alien to me. I always wonder what would happen if they could hold on to its players for 3-5 years. Anyhow between a desperate defense almost scared of the ball, a shaky keeper (he seemed better 2-3 years ago when subbing for Steke) and a quick and deadly attack there was something missing. Apparently it was an entire midfield. Anita coming on did help matters on that front but man, Ajax are going to leak goals this season. FdB has a tough task and would do well to buy a decent CB. Seeing Blind at CB made me LOL. The attack was good Boerrigter and Sulejmani played really well down the flanks attacking with pace and skill. That Sith guy was decent too.

    1. Oh. Danny Blind’s son is in the 1st team now? I wish I could still follow Ajax.

      You are right about keeping players for 3-5 years. Heck, we can’t even keep players longer than 2 years. I’m still amazed that Van der Wiel hasn’t been snapped up by a big league team yet.

    2. I agree on Soriano too. It’s really bad the way Pep handles him. Why not give him a shot. It doesn’t cost us a cent to let him promote him to the 1st team.

  8. I said it on twitter but I’ll say it here as well. I’m soooooo pissed off that Joachim Löw has decided to rest Ozil and Khedira for the high profile friendly with Brazil! It’s the 2nd time he does this…

    1. Co-incidence right. I have a feeling that Mourinho had a say in this. Last season there were a few internationals “rested” as well or had some “injury” only to play the next match for club.

    1. Why does Messi likes to sit on balls??! It’s not the 1st time I see him doing that. I was told when I was a kid in Holland that it will give the ball an egg-shape.

  9. Here we go:

    Xavi won’t play the ESP friendly against ITA because of problems with a right calf muscle. He returns to Barcelona. #fcblive [via efe]

    So should be hope that its just to avoid playing the friendly or is his injuries really bad enough for us to want to really sign Cesc?

    1. please tell me that is just a light injury and he’ll recover soon! 😕

      is Xavi condition worse than we know?
      is that why Pep and Xavi want Cesc so bad?
      do we really need Cesc?

      will RoSELL pay the damn money?

    2. This is why the “we don’t need Cesc” discussions seem a little naive to me… and the, “we should wait and get him cheap in the future” discussions seem misguided – we need him or an equal caliber player now, not in a few years. To minimize the effect of adapting to the Barca style of play, they are looking at the obvious place. In a few years we have Thiago who would be ready to take on the highest levels of competition, which he was supposed to mature into by subbing for a while longer to Iniesta and Xavi. I am convinced that no matter how much we don’t want it to be true, that Xavi’s wheels have logged a lot, a lot!, of miles, and he is just not going to be able to continue to play in all competitions all the time. This is why I believe Fabregas is a priority for Barca, Thiago needs to continue to develop under a Iniesta and Xavi/Cesc midfield. Anyone whose played any sport at a competitive level, and is aging, knows that these kinds of injuries have a cascading effect. You hurt a tendon, and you play through it, and compensate by using muscles in unusual or slightly weight shifted ways to relieve strain and pain and this create new problems, and it snowballs and gets hard to untangle.

    1. Didn’t we also sign a <10 year old kid called Kai from England a few weeks back??

      If you have your way, we wouldn't be having Messi, Iniesta and Xavi just to name a few.

      I for one am very proud that we got some of our players at a very young age that we can call it our own. Remember what Laporta said?

      I remember in 1999 or 2000, Madrid shocked the world, or my little world at least, by signing a 10 year old Swedish kid. That was the talk of our playground & football training grounds back then. I wonder what happened to that kid.

  10. I posted a comment but it didn’t appear anywhere so I attempted another one and it says this;

    Duplicate comment detected; it looks as though you’ve already said that!

  11. Nice news round up Kari thanks. However The Rory Mackay link goes to the Romeu piece Sid Lowe did. Fix it! 😀

    1. It took 39 comments for someone to tell me this?! FFS, you guys really don’t read the stories I link to, do you (except Roz)? 😀

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