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Match report

New record for Messi as Barça beats Betis

December 10th, 2012

Lionel Messi scored the two goals required to beat Gerd Muller’s record for goals in a single calendar year. Messi has now scored 86 goals in 2012, breaking Muller’s 40 year old record, a feat that looked like it might be in doubt after his injury against Benfica on Tuesday; luckily it was not as serious as first feared and the Argentine scored both of Barça’s goals for the match.

Messi’s goals came at the quarter hour mark, and then just 10 minutes later to put the visitors 2 goals up. However, Betis were never going to make it easy for the Catalans and scored seven minutes before the break and looked like they might score again at the beginning of the second half when they came on looking to dominate.

However, neither team was to score again despite coming close and when the final whistle blew the scoreline was the same as at the end of the first half. The  result leaves Barça six points ahead of Atletico at the top of the table.

0-1 Messi (min 15)
0-2 Messi (min 24)
1-2  Ruben Castro (min 38)


Goalless draw against Benfica sees Messi stretchered off

December 6th, 2012

Barcelona’s draw againt Benfica ended in a 0-0 draw last night with a deisaster for Leo Messi when he was stretchered off with a knee injury. Despite already qualifying for the next round of Champions League, Messi came on in the second half to try and surpass Gerd Muller’s record for the most goals scored in a calendar year.

Despite Barça being full of youngsters they dominated possession early on, but Benfica had a few good chances at the Barcelona goal. While Messi was on the Catalans regained control and it looked like things might go their way. However, the injury happened in six minutes before time, a devastating blow to both Messi and FC Barcelona.

The Argentine player will reportedly miss two training sessions in order to get him back to match fitness as he lies just one goal behind Muller’s record of 85 goals in a calendar year. He has four games remaining in 2012 to match or exceed the record.


La Liga 2012/2013 – standing after week 14

December 3rd, 2012

Real Madrid and Atletico Madrid faced off on Saturday at the Bernabeu, with the home team winning 2-0. With Barcelona’s win against Athletic Bilbao it means they have opened the gap with Atletico to six points.

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Win against Athletic Bilbao gives Barça new league record

December 3rd, 2012

Once again Barcelona showed what incredible talent they possess in a 5-1 win against Athletic Bilbao at a cold Nou Camp on Saturday. The win was the thirteenth out of fourteen matches and means that Barça have made the best start to the season by any Spanish team ever.

Gerard Pique opened the scoring, with a goal after 20 minutes, with Messi scoring just minutes later. With the Catalans attacking the Bilbao goal mouth at every opportunity it looked like they would soon score again, and just before the hald time whistle Adriano made it 3-0.

Cesc Fabregas scored Barça’s fourth in the 56th minute, with Ibai Gómez scoring the only goal for the visitors in minute 64. However, just five minutes later Leo Messi scored his second goal to make it 5-1, and came close to scoring a hat trick before the final whistle blew.

1-0 Pique (min 21)
2-0 Messi (min 24)
3-0 Adriano (min 45)
4-0 Cesc (min 56)
4-1 Ibai Gómez (min 64)
5-1 Messi (min 69)


Barça beats Alaves for last 16 of Copa del Rey

November 29th, 2012

Barcelona made it through to the last 16 of the Copa del Rey last night after beating Alaves 3-1 in a match that saw the visitors score first.

Alaves scored the opener at the quarter hour mark, with the Catalans not up to their usual form at the start. However, the goal made them step up to the challenge and eventually Adriano scored just after the half hour mark to end the first half with one goal to each team.

Following the break it was David Villa’s chance to shine, in his first full match since returning from injury – he broke his leg during the Club’s World Cup, almost a year ago. Villa scored Barcelona’s second and third goals just after the start of the second half to give the home team a 3-1 win and to go through to the next round 6-1 on aggregate.

Barça’s next Copa del Rey challenge will be against Cordoba on December 12th at the Nou Camp.

0-1 Viguera (min 15)
1-1 Adriano (min 34)
2-1 Villa (min 55)
3-1 Villa (min 58)


Win against Levante opens up gap with Madrid

November 26th, 2012

Barcelona gained a convincing win against Levante on Sunday night, allowing them to open the lead up over Real Madrid to 11 points, after their archrival lost against Betis the previous night.

While the first half ended without a goal, just two minutes after the break saw Barça’s first from Leo Messi after being set up by Iniesta. Five minutes later the Argentine made it 2-0, once again thanks to Iniesta, who was perhaps man of the night; minutes later he put the ball into the Levante net to make it 3-0 to the Catalans, and he helped create the fourth goal for Barça, scored by Cesc Fabregas.

All in all a useful win against Levente, who went into the match in the number four spot in the league. They have now dropped to six, but even so have made leaps and bounds in the last two seasons when they were considered one of the weakest teams in the league.

0-1 Messi (min 47)
0-2 Messi (min 52)
0-3 Iniesta (min 57)
0-4 Fabregas (min 63)


Barça secure place in Champions League knockout stage after 3-0 win against Spartak Moscow

November 21st, 2012

A goal from Dani Alves and two from Lionel Messi in the first half ensured that FC Barcelona qualified for the next round of Champions League last night in a cold night in Moscow.

After the setback in Glasgow, the Catalans came on with a real sense of purpose. The second half saw a couple more opportunities for Barcelona but they failed to capitalise on them and while the home team mounted a comeback it was short lived and they failed to dent Barcelona’s defence.

0-1 Alves (min 15)
0-2 Messi (min 26)
0-3 Messi (min 38)


Barcelona beats Zaragoza to make it 11 out of 12

November 19th, 2012

FC Barcelona won their eleventh league match of the season on Saturday night, in a game that saw the welcome return of Carles Puyol after his elbow dislocation; and with Gerard Pique back too, Barça’s defence was back up to full strength.

The Catalans stared off well, taking the lead at the quarter hour mark thanks to a goal from Leo Messi. The controlled the match completely, quickly retaking possession from Zaragoza whenever the visitors gained the ball. However, when Zaragoza did get the chance to attack the Barcelona goal they broke through and were able to equalise from the resulting corner. Five minutes later though, Alex Song scored his first goal for Barça after being set up by Messi.

While Zaragoza created some chances, after the break Barcelona once again reigned and in the 58th minute Messi scored from a Montoya cross. It was good to see Carles Puyol receive a standing ovation when he was substituted with Bartra, but the defence remained pretty much impenetrable. Cesc set Iniesta up twelve minutes from the end only for the shot to hit the post, and the score stood at 3-1 when the final whistle blew.

Out of a possible 36 points from the twelve league matches played, Barça has now taken 34, a truly remarkable record for Tito Vilanova in his debut season as coach.

1-0 Messi (min 15)
1-1 Paco Montañés (min 23)
2-1 Alex Song (min 27)
3-1 Messi (min 58)


Barça beats Mallorca as Messi passes Pele

November 12th, 2012

Barcelona continued their record breaking streak of 10 wins in 11 league matches after beating Mallorca 4-2 last night, while Lionel Messi passed Pele’s 1958 tally of 75 goals in a calendar year with his 75th and 76th goals. The record stands at 85, by Gerd Mueller in 1972.

Barça dominated the first half, and by the half time whistle were three goals ahead thanks to Xavi, Messi and Tello. However, after the break Mallorca came on fighting with Pereira scoring the first for the home team in minute 54. Three minutes later Barcelona’s lead was cut to a single goal after a penalty was awarded to Mallorca for hand ball, with Victor putting the ball into the back of the net.

However, the Catalans reacted well and when Alves crossed to Alexis, who controlled the ball, Messi was able to finish and the match was back under control again.

0-1 Xavi (min 27)
0-2 Messi (min 43)
0-3 Tello (min 44)
1-3 Pereira (min 54)
2-3 Víctor (min 57)
2-4 Messi (min 69)


Celtic deals blow to Barcelona in second defeat of season

November 8th, 2012

FC Barcelona won their second match of the season last night against Celtic in the group stages of Champions League. The Scottish club had few chances on the Barça goal, but those they did were capitalised on and the home team went two goal up thanks to Wanyama in the 20th minute and Watt in the 82nd.

Barcelona’s only goal was thanks to an injury time goal from Lionel Messi to end the scoreline 2-1 and had they won this match, the Catalans would have qualified for the next round already.

1-0 Wanyama (min 20)
2-0 Watt (min 82)
2-1 Messi (min 90)


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