Poll Time! Who do you want to sign this summer? + U21 LiveBlog

[polldaddy poll=5136035]

Note: the results from the Fabregas poll conducted here on BFB show a 83% of you either don’t want to sign Fabregas at all or only when the price/time is right. Just sayin’. Interesting.

Another note: I’ll be running a LiveBlog for the Spain U21 vs England U21s today. It’s at 2:45pmEST if you want to join in. You’ll see some Bojangles, Thiago, Botia, Jeffren! ….And some other nobodies like Mata and Javi Martinez.

Spain Lineup (Barca players in bold) – De Gea; Montoya – Botia – Alvaro Dominguez – Vila Rosello (aka. Didac); Thiago – Javi Martinez – Herrera (aka. Ander); Mata – Adrian – Jeffren

Bench: Mino, Marino, Azpilicueta, San Jose, Parejo, Bojan, Capel, Nsue, Jose Angel, Ruiz, Ruben Perez, Muniain

Categorized as Polls

By Kari

Just your neighbourhood Barca fanatic


    1. He couldn’t couldn’t deal with the fame.

      He has new a pet(s?) now..

      Maybe –



    2. I wouldn’t want Puyol to do that, Otherwise Mourinho might go and put that on his list of things to complain about, maybe he will Sue for naming rights

    3. I can’t believe there isn’t a memorial post up yet… it’s Queca, a member of the family.

      Oh no, what will Crackovia do with this news?

    4. Seems it should part of the official record though – it’s very sah-ah-ahd. (sorry, sorry Puyi… too early in tragedy + time = comedy equation?)

  1. Interesting news coming out about the reason Marcelo was not called up for Brazil in the Copa. He faked an injury to get out of playing a friendly in London earlier this spring.

    1. Very interesting, what is the source of this news?

      I’m amazed Marcelo thought he could get away with skipping a friendly. Brazil has such a huge talent pool that players must continually fight for their place in the squad let alone the starting line up.

      Too bad for Marcelo, as he is a very talented player who had an excellent season, but his loss is Adriano’s gain. Here’s hoping Adriano gets a chance to play in the Copa America!

    2. I got it from Graham Hunter’s twitter, but he got it straight from the Brazilian coach and apparently Marcelo himself confirmed it in one of his own emails.


    3. Seems to be true its in some newspapers as well…Brazil coach seemed to say that he is open to explanations and that he understands that he understands that sometines the players can be pressured by their clubs…oh mr. moumou 😉

  2. @Jnice

    I agree that Sanchez is better on the ball and possibly a better passer. However Rossi is better off the ball and a better finisher.

    That is why I said 50/50

    1. I’d prefer Rossi but judging by player vs team videos Sanchez looks like he can pressure opponents persistently very well. The question yet to be answered is whether Rossi is willing or able to apply pressure on the opponent like Villa/Pedro.

      Sanchez might not be a good finisher, but will Rossi be a good finisher while running around non-stop for 60-90 minutes?

      Thats why its crucial for us to sign key forward players before the pre-season begins, it helps them adjust to the work load.

      The good thing about Rossi is that he is peaking right now and he’ll do anything for success, makes him a more desirable purchase and easier for us to deal with. Sanchez on the other hand there lies uncertainty, will he handle the level of competition within the squad? plus Udinese seem to want nothing less than a bazillion dollars. I see Villarreal accept 30 mil eventually, which is a reasonable price.

    2. When I was on the Inter Offside blog reading Ramzi school the mod over there, I read some comments about how hard Udinese is to negotiate with. Seems they were right

    3. Like negotiating with Del Nido/Sevilla. But I’m still not convinced that Sanchez is the ultimate target. He’s best in the role/part of the pitch where we …. ahem! …. already have a fair to middlin’ good player.

  3. Apparently Neymar is going to Madrid in exchange for 40m Euros and Mourinho has been promised he will be the godfather to Neymar’s child.

  4. According to B.B.C,we have signed a winger from leeds by the name ELLIOT KEBBY,a 16 yr arsenal-type of signing

    1. If true I would be very disappointed. Barça shouldn’t sign up 16 yr olds from other countries, and even less so if we are (rightfully) crowing about EPL teams hawking La Masia.

    2. Apparently, he moved (back) to Spain with his mother. I don’t see him travelling back and forth for training every day, so it’s an obvious decision on his part.

      Would you be disappointed because he’s 16, or because we sign him for free (bar the compensation)? Most of our youth have played with other teams before joining La Masia. It happens all the time.

    3. Not because he is 16, but because I don’t like us scouting for players that young in other countries.

      Even if he is moving back to Spain with his mother I would ask the question whether he is moving back to Spain with his mother BECAUSE we have scouted him at Leeds.

      I thought all youth players lived at La Masia anyway.

    4. We would restrict our potential if we didn’t scout in other countries. We wouldn’t have Messi, for example. But I understand why you’re against it. The kid should always have the last wordt on it, ofcourse. Some just adapt better than others.

      Good question. According to Barcastuff on twitter, he moved back last summer. If he only started playing at Juvenil B this week, those two can’t be related.

      Yeah, they do. I think it’s a boarding school first and a football academy second. At least for the younger ones.

    5. Scouting for young talent in other countries is perfectly legitimate. I have no problem with that at all. If a kid is talented enough for La Masia, why should he be denied that opportunity? The difference between what Barça does and what Arsenal does is that in Spain there are restrictions on contracts and payments to youngsters, designed to prevent them from being exploited. A kid of 16 coming to Barça knows he will not be getting big money or guaranteed first team minutes. Just a good education, a lot of hard work, and the chance of a lifetime.

  5. I don’t know how true this is, but IF it is true, I’ll be very upset.

    Barcelona won’t buy back Sporting centre back Botia (22) for 1.8M. If they want him from Thursday on, they have to pay 2.5M [cat radio]

  6. The Times is reporting that Fabergas is going to make his wishes to return to Barca public this summer if Arsenal won’t complete a deal. He’s not necessarily going to put in a transfer request – but he’s going to essentially up the ante and make a public statement if need be.

    This circus is never going to stop.

    Pep is going to have his hands full keeping all of these midfield players happy with playing time. It is not going to be easy.

    On another note – the silly season can be very cruel. This talk about Thiago Silva is sort of awful. It’s never going to happen but if I had my choice of adding any one player in the world to the Barca squad he would be very close to the top of that list.

    Disappointing news about Botia. 1.8M and the team isn’t going to buy him back. I really don’t understand that. If they buy him they can definitely just turn around and sell him for at least 5M very soon.

    That would be the money they need for Jose Angel.

    Something here really isn’t adding up with Botia. Hopefully it’s not just stubbornness.

    And Rossi really wants to wear the colors. Desperately.

    1. Apparently it’s been decided that Botia should simmer for another season. The next season buyout is 2.5, which still ain’t that much, if he continues to develop.

      Antoine Griezmann’s name keeps popping up. Recall that Ray Ray was all over this dude when we played RSO, and he gave Alves fits. But who knows?

      As I’ve noted, the window opens July 1. My guess is that no later than mid-July, we will be done and dusted with all family business.

    2. Makes sense then on Botia. I just really feel that the club needs another CB and am not sure if Fontas can be relied on given his limited experience. Also don’t like a pairing of Fontas and Pique. Fontas and Abidal or Puyol would be fine. But Fontas and Pique is too much risk on the counter.

      If they bring in a LB that will suffice. I’d prefer a quality CB to keep Abidal at LB. But the biggest need is to bring in one defender – and that can be at LB.

      Griezman is one of those kind of out of left field names that I think is likely to have some substance behind it. I could see Pep liking him.

      He’s got tons of pace. He really did bother Dani. He was a guy who stressed Dani’s positioning high up the pitch. Not many attackers actually succeed in doing that as Barca always has the ball. I think he’s going to be more expensive than Barca will want to pay though.

      I agree with the point ciaran made above. I think we are going to wait until the year is up so that the austerity theme can be fluffed up. And afterwards the club will spend it’s money.

      Really odd summer. Usually you can write most of this stuff off. But the club has needs and I do think Pep wants to expand the squad.

    3. 2 seasons starting almost week in, week out for Sporting, a team that is usually under pressure defensively. I think Botia is more than ready right now.

      No matter how the papers spin this, I still don’t get Pep’s and Barça’s reasoning on this one.

      “In Pep We Trust” doesn’t fly for me in this case.

  7. @ Kxevin-

    If I’m planning a trip to Barcelona in January, what is the best way to make sure we get tickets to a game? Can I trust travel agents with this. I don’t like the idea of traveling all that way with only the hope of getting tickets the day before(note: dates of trip depend on the league schedule, we won’t try for any “premium” games, we will leave plenty of leeway for the way the FA waits to post the final time/date, CdR games are OK and one of the reasons we’re thinking about January as it may give us more options for games). Thanks

    1. Depends on what you want to see. Rare is the sold-out Camp Nou match. I’ve only seen it for the Clasic, and Arsenal Champions League matches. So usually you can just walk up and get a ticket. If you want to plan ahead, just go when non-socis can buy tickets, and acquire away.

      Rare is the match day that far off. As long as you allot a day at either side, you’ll be fine.

      Winter is a great time. I spent a couple weeks in November there one year and got 4 matches in.

    2. Do I trust travel agents that assure me they can get tickets?

      If I buy tickets from the website do they only become available when the time/date is set?

      We’ll allow Saturday-Monday for a game and I’m sure we’ll find plenty to do while waiting. Planning on being in Catalunya for a week.

      Also planning/dreaming on heading down coast to Valencia then over to Sevilla (maybe there’ll be a Valencia, Levante, Sevilla, or R. Betis game we can pick up)

      Yeah winter- colder but better hope for games, plus college age kids are home to take care of household stuff- Just hubby and I for this trip 🙂

    3. Travel agents who rely on assuring customers on ticket availability usually require a premium. In truth, it really is not difficult to handle it all personally.

      If you purchase tickets from the site or la caixa, they become available X number of days before the match – once it has been confirmed. It’s very simple to make a reservation and pickup the tickets at the main ticket counter on match day or days prior. Since it’s only two people going in the trip, you can decide for yourself if you want to reserve as soon as possible or wait for non participating season ticket holders to release their seats for the match. You can make this decision after you have decided what match to watch, the class of the rival, whether there are quality seats available early on and whatever travel plans you need to accomodate.

      In the end, it shouldn’t be too difficult to find two consecutive seats with a great view. Harder to find obstructed seats than the other way round.

    4. Thanks to all-

      I’m a hyper planner if there is such a thing. I guess I’ll just have to relax as it seems noboby usually has any problem with this.

    5. I went two times this season for Hercules and Atletico Madrid matches.. both times bought my tickets on ticketmaster.es which sells for the same price as Barça’s official site and picked up the tickets at the stadium..I also saw lots of people buying at the stadium..You don’t really need any aganet to handle this for you..It only takes 2 mins to buy a ticket online..have fun 😉

    6. When the website is working, you can successfully buy them from here: https://entrades.fcbarcelona.cat/web/en/entrades.html

      They’ll send you copies of the tickets which you need to print out in full before going to the stadium. The barcode needs to be clearly legible, as this is what is scanned at the turnstiles to gain access to the stadium.

      Do the stadium tour on a day when there is no game – on game days, only the museum is open, and access to the pitch, dressing rooms and press areas is not available.

      Email me (matdxb (at) freenet.de) if you need further details or advice. Happy to supply!


  8. A little more on the Marcelo story. Apparently he accidentally sent Menezes an email where he admitted the injury was faked. LOL!


    Serves him right. I know he’s not the first (or last) player to try to get out of a NT obligation, but you can’t outright lie and expect to get away with it. Especially if you are from Brazil, where playing for the NT is regarded as a sacred duty just slightly more important than taking communion. I can’t see Dani Alves even considering doing something like that. Or Messi, who would play for Argentina with a broken leg if he had to. When Xavi didn’t feel up to playing in the recent friendlies, he picked up the phone and discussed it with VDB, who being a reasonable man, agreed and left him out of the squad. No tricks, no playacting, just professionalism.

    Having said all that, I do think FIFA needs to take a hard look at how they schedule international games, especially friendlies. Players in the big leagues are getting increasingly fatigued and long-term injuries will be the result.

    1. And of course the most interesting point is that it seems RM ordered him to try to get out of the match. Pretty sleazy.

  9. apparently sky sports Italia just stated that Neymar has joined Madrid..can you imagine? TB, Jedward Callejon and Neymar in the same team..let the Worst Hair Style contest begin

    1. Sky Italia is notorious for reporting rumours as facts. Not saying it’s not true, but I’ll wait until I see it on a more reliable newssite.

    2. Don’t worry, K. Neymar said thats not true and then Sky Italia (which is different from Sky Sports) withdrew the story. All other spanish papers reported the story with Sky Italia as their source.

    3. That was earlier today. Neymar and the president Santos have already come out denying these reports made by Bronzetti. Bronzetti has also changed his tune to “All I said it that I read somewhere the deal was done.”

    4. I think this situation sums up a lot of what has been happening for many clubs, especially RM and Barca. Some reporters wanting attention. Throw out a rumor that they think is going to work out and hope for the best. Worse case scenario, they say that their words are twisted. If it works, then they take credit for breaking out the news first. Kxevin is shedding a tear right now over journalism and its state in Spain and football.

    5. Meh, pre-contracts are meaningless. If its not on the official site, I don’t believe it..

  10. As far as I’m concerned we need 1 defender and 1 attacker this window.

    If it was a possibility to sign Thiago Silva for €30million or less I’d sign him in a heartbeat. Imagine Thiago Silva & Pique as our defensive partnership. I agree with those who say we should sign Botia but he would ideally be my 4th choice central defender this coming year and for that money his signing is IMO a no-brainer, but Thiago Silva is the best central defender in the world along with Pique and the two of them would be devastating as a pairing.

    If we were to make €20million in player sales and lets say sign him and Rossi I’d be perfectly happy. We would have a very well balanced squad

    Valdes / Pinto
    Alves / Montoya
    Pique / Puyol
    T.Silva / Fontas
    Abidal / Adriano
    Xavi / Thiago
    Busquets / Mascherano
    Iniesta / Keita
    Pedro / Afellay
    Messi / Bojan
    Rossi / Villa

  11. In case you haven’t seen it already, excellent interview with David Villa (translation not great tho):


    Guardiola says the striker who plays on the wing on this team works harder than anyone …
    I have always worked hard, but the main position, where I played at Zaragoza or Valencia, gives you many moments of rest and on the team’s wing it’s difficult to have any quiet time. I am proud to have succeeded. What I had to learn was the defensive patterns: when to start the pressure, when you have to close. But I had a lot of help from the coaching staff. They have helped me a lot. I’ve learned a lot from watching Pedro. For me, he was the example to follow on the field.

    Guardiola has been very strict with you?
    Yes. A lot. I am grateful because he helped me a lot. Pep’s talks are special. He gives you confidence. One day I read that Alves said that if the coach asked him to throw him out the window it is because there is a good thing down there. That’s it. The coach is very close to us, he knows what you need in every moment and brings it to you. I will not name names, but I’ve had many managers and Guardiola is different. He gives you lots of information and conveys a lot of security.

  12. Also, Jordi Rios (Crackovia!Puyol) tweeted this to Carles Puyol:

    Traitor! The body of the Queco is still hot, and you’re with another …


    1. Congrats Blitzen on your NT getting a point from Panama, something we couldn’t do.
      Watching US v Guadaloupe now. It’s not the beautiful game. Digging Guadaloupe’s kits though. US defense is dire 🙁
      Ooooooooh 1-0 US as I type!

    2. Couldn’t agree more. If we controlled the midfield better we wouldn’t have to worry as much about how crappy our CB
      situation is.

    3. I have been to Guadeloupe! Beautiful island, great food, biggest cockroaches I have ever seen!

      Umm…yay, Canada? (Sorry still too depressed about the hockey game last night to be enthusiastic.)

    4. sorry ’bout the hockey. Don’t follow hockey much. Can’t see the daggone puck on my TV screen.

      How the heck did Dempsey miss that header?

    5. This game is looking better than I thought it would. US looks good on the attack right now. Tons of chances created but still 1-0. Gotta kill off the game.

    6. Donovan is looking better, but still messing up some passes. We really need a finishing touch to these attacks!

    7. This was a lighthearted Queca mourning thread until you two messed it up with your silly USNT discussion. 👿


    8. My bad—

      “Goodbye, Queca, whose long and faithful friendship those who knew you will not forget! Though her body will deteriorate, her spirit lives on quiet places, turn on the web from their
      ….oh sorry, that one was written for a spider

      Queca, may she rest in peace (Was there a real pet sheep? I thought that was just a Crackovia thing.)

    9. That’s better. Be respectful of the dead.

      Yes, Puyi has a farm and there was a real sheep named Queca that was rejected by its mother and he raised it as a pet. Not in his house like on Crackovia. 😆

      Now Puyi has posted a pic of his new pet, a calf, and asked people to send name suggestions. It’s orfully cute: http://yfrog.com/kk7x4rj

  13. Ughhhhhh!!! Only two fresh posts in the last four days. I am dying for some fresh original BFB content. Maybe a posty about the probability of each rumored transfer. I want…..

    T. Silva in a swap for 10m, Ibra + JDS, with possible JDS buy back @ +3m.

    Cesc for 37m + Jeffren and Maxwell (Clichy is on his way out, Maxwell would be a good back-up for an EPL team.

    Rossi or Sanchez @ 24-27m or Bojan + 17m or 21m + a B team defender w/ a 3m buy back.

    The best starting 11 in the world getting a top 10 defender, top 5 mid and a top 20 forward. I know that we have this supposed hard spending cap, but in order to really cement this dynasty,, we need prolific 12-15 players. Could you imagine our first 4 reserves being Masch, Puyol, Pedro and Cesc? That would be epic.

    I guess the real question is, do we take the proven quality of Rossi, or the near unlimited potential of Sanchez. As of now, Messi is the only player in the starting 11 that can talk players on 1v1. With Sanchez, we are even more of a threat. If he can play the opposite wing of Messi, with Villa up front, it would be sweet.

    Rossi is exceptional, a thirty goal scorer in La Liga, w/ Nilmar needing his shots as well. Super promising, great outeside range, a la 3m, quick and seems like a team player. Also knows Barca well and would understand his role on the team. Very unlikely to stir things up over playing time.

    Finally, I find it amazing that the two best mids in the world, are almost begging the team to add their friend Cesc, although it would most definantly mean a reduction in their playing time. That is super cool. If both Andres and Xavi give up 12 of their 50ish starts, and let Cesc feature in the Copa, I think Cesc can start 30 games or so on this team. The only problem I see is that Afellay is a CM at heart and is not being used there at all. If Cesc comes that would push him even farther down the line.

    This team is so good we could play a 4-4-2 and not play one of our starting mids, and still have one of the top 5 midfields in the world.





    This would be a bad ass line up for second leg gems in the copa that we have big leads in.

    1. Looks like someones been hitting the Football Manager too hard?

      “T. Silva in a swap for 10m, Ibra + JDS, with possible JDS buy back @ +3m.

      Cesc for 37m + Jeffren and Maxwell (Clichy is on his way out, Maxwell would be a good back-up for an EPL team.

      Rossi or Sanchez @ 24-27m or Bojan + 17m or 21m + a B team defender w/ a 3m buy back.”

      Personally I wouldnt get rid of Maxwell unless we have another replacement LB. Adriano and Abidal can play there but see what happened this season?

      We cant keep stretching the team so thin. Strength in depth

  14. Czech Republic vs Spain in the European Under-21 Championship tomorrow (12:00 pm EST).

    Hope Bojan and Muniain start tomorrow. I’m guessing Spain will have learned from their mistakes and know they need to look for the goal more tomorrow. Spain also know they must win.

    Czech Republic is a good team. It should be a good game.

  15. Say what now?! TSN and TSN2 are broadcasting the U21 tournament and I didn’t know this?! Ehhhhhhhhh?!

    Well, whatever. At least I know now…

  16. Graham Hunter is shipping the Cesc to Barça transfer really hard. I don’t disagree, but I find it pretty telling how convinced he is that it will happen.

    1. Yeah, I asked him some stuff today and he said he thinks Cesc will come out and demand a transfer. I’ve also been looking at his timeline and like you said, he seems pretty convinced the deal will happen and he is always genuine in his answers.

    2. TBQH I love his twitter, he’s awfully fun to read. Much better than Sid Lowe. And he likes punk music. 😀

      He was also pretty hard on Marcelo today. Tee hee. 😛

  17. I wish someone would give the folks at the realmadridfootballblog some of these hector pills I’ve been reading about..a few of them really do believe that Aguero is as good as Messi *shaking my head*

    1. Hector pills don’t fix that, lol. That’s just choosing to believe what you want to believe. They still like to criticize a player (Messi) that has killed them for years now. Oh, well.

    2. there are reasons why Ramzi calls them the ghosts of dead souls.

      hector pills cannot cure dead souls buddy, because their souls are dead… 😛

    3. Yes. Some also believe CRonaldo’s 8 goals after the Liga was decided will get him the Balon D’or.

  18. My eyes are bleeding after watching Dempsey miss about a dozen goal scoring opportunities tonight. For fear of going blind, I hope the U21 Spanish team does better tomorrow!

    1. Yikes! Bleeding eyes! That’s never a good thing, especially if you’re an Uchiha! ….I’ll get my coat.

  19. Hello Everyone:

    This is completely off topic, but I really need help with something. I’m trying to translate this 15 min press conference with Cesc Fabregas (in Spanish and Catalan) into English, but I’m not sure how to get it done. Transcript or subtitles would work.

    My Spanish is pretty good, but the bad audio quality is preventing me from making out what’s being said. I think a native speaker, or someone who is just better than me, wouldn’t have the same problem. Also, I don’t speak Catalan. Does anyone know of anyone here who would be capable of doing a translation like this, or who could recomend a reputable professional translator?

    Thank you! -Anne

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=x7rPAmxsAVQ (1/3)
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pNcI5g1YnH4&feature=related (2/3)
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rkFOXH_QU-Q&feature=related (3/3)

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