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Neymar debut against Lechia Gdansk ends in draw

July 31st, 2013

Barcelona yesterday travelled to Poland in the last of a series of three friendlies before the Gamper Trophy on Friday. The starting lineup against Lechia Gdansk was almost exactly the same as that which played in the previous two matches, with key players still missing from the Spanish and Brazilian selections, with one exception; that of Neymar, who made his debut for Barça in the last 15 minutes of the game.

If Barcelona thought the match would go their way then they were sorely mistaken, with the hosts controlling the game from the start and scoring at the quarter hour mark. The Catalans clawed back a goal from Sergi Roberto ten minutes later, but when the half time whistle blew the scores were level.

Back on after the break Lechia came on fighting still and scored in the first five minutes to once again put themselves ahead but a few short minutes after Leo Messi equalised again for the Catalans. With the majority of the squad now made up of B team players after a mass substitution, Messi and Alexis were also brought off. On went Neymar, playing his first match for Barcelona and who instantly became the target by the home side.

Although not able to show what he is capable of in that situation, he will surely play of Friday against Santos when the squad makes its first appearance of the new season at the Nou Camp.

1-0 Bieniuk (Min 14)
1-1 Sergi Roberto (min 25)
2-1 Grzelczak (min 49)
2-2 Messi (min 56)

Barcelona dominates in second pre-season match

July 28th, 2013

Barcelona last night won the first match in there pre-season tour, when they visited Oslo to play Valerenga.

The squad was missing a number of key players once again, giving the chance for a number of B team players to show what they could do. Very quickly the Catalans showed what they are made of, with three goals inside 12 minutes giving an early boost.

By the break they were four goals ahead, and with two goals early in the second half, both scored by Dongou, all that was needed was a goal six minutes from the final whistle to put FC Barcelona on 7-0.

0-1 Alexis (min 3)
0-2 Tello (min 5)
0-3 Messi (min 12)
0-4 Jonathan dos Santos (min 41)
0-5 Dongou (min 49)
0-6 Dongou (min 53)
0-7 Joan Román lr (min 84)

Barça opens pre-season against Bayern Munich

July 25th, 2013

FC Barcelona played their first pre-season friendly yesterday evening when they travelled to Munich to play against Pep Guardiola’s new club.

The match was the first in which they showed off their new away strip, in the red and yellow colours of the Catalan flag, and while during the first half a number of familiar faces made the lineup including Leo Messi, the second half saw the Catalans fielding their B team.

In the end it was the Germans who won the match but given the number of B team players acquitted themselves well against the European champions. Goals came in minutes 13 and 85, but as a first match it wasn’t a bad result.

1-0 Lahm (min 13)
2-0 Mandzukic (min 85)

Barça signs Gerard Martino to replace Tito

July 24th, 2013

FC Barcelona yesterday confirmed Gerard “Tata” Martino as its new coach, following the shock news of Tito Vilanova stepping down last Friday.

The Argentine has recently been coaching Newell’s Old Boys following successful stints with the Paraguay and Argentine national selections. Newell’s Old Boys is Lionel Messi’s old club and prior to his appointment yesterday, Messi had already voiced his backing to Martino.

After cancelling a friendly on Saturday following the news about Vilanova, which has been rescheduled to 30th July, Barcelona’s first pre-season match will be played againt Bayern Munich tonight, whose new coach is Pep Guardiola.

Tito Vilanova steps down as Barça coach

July 20th, 2013

It was with shock yesterday that I learnt that Tito Vilanova was leaving his post as head coach of FC Barcelona owing to a recurrence of the cancer that has plagued him since late 2011.

He has undergone treatment a number of times, taking 2 months out from last season to receive chemo and radiotherapy in New York, and each time it has been hoped that he had seen the last of the disease.

However, that doesn’t seem to be the case and he has therefore left the club as the treatment he will undergo this time is “incompatible” with him continuing in the role.

Sandro Rosell and the Barça players looked visibly shaken at the news, which was announced at a hastily called press conference yesterday evening. While Jordi Roura will take over immediately, the club hopes to appoint a new coach next week.

There is no such thing as good time with things like this, but with the club just about to start playing a number of pre-season friendliest the timing is terrible. The match due to be played tonight has been cancelled, but inevitably at some point they will need to start playing.

Our very best wishes go to Tito Vilanova and his family and hope the next round of treatment finally beats the cancer.

David Leigh
Simply Barcelona Tickets

FC Barcelona fixtures – la liga 2013-2014

July 16th, 2013

Last week saw the draw for the 2013-2014 Spanish League, which for FC Barcelona kicks off this year on the weekend of 17/18 August against Levante.

After the league has started they still have the two Spanish Supercup matches to play against Atletico Madrid, before heading down to Malaga and Valencia on 24/25 August and 31 Agust/1 September respectively, and then back to the Nou Camp on 14/15 September against Sevilla. That is quite a start to the season, which the Catalan club can often be slow to get into, and so a real test.

18 Aug
Barcelona v Levante
25 Aug
Malaga v Barcelona
1 Sep
Valencia v Barcelona
15 Sep
Barcelona v Sevilla
22 Sep
Rayo Vallecano v Barcelona
26 Sep
Barcelona v Real Sociedad
29 Sep
Almeria v Barcelona
6 Oct
Barcelona v Valladolid
20 Oct
Osasuna v Barcelona
27 Oct
Barcelona v Real Madrid
31 Oct
Celta v Barcelona
3 Nov
Barcelona v Espanyol
10 Nov
Betis v Barcelona
24 Nov
Barcelona v Granada
1 Dec
Athletic Bilbao v Barcelona
15 Dec
Barcelona v Villarreal
22 Dec
Getafe v Barcelona
5 Jan
Barcelona v Elche
12 Jan
Atletico Madrid v Barcelona
19 Jan
Levante v Barcelona
26 Jan
Barcelona v Malaga
2 Feb
Barcelona v Valencia
9 Feb
Sevilla v Barcelona
16 Feb
Barcelona v Rayo Vallecano
23 Feb
Real Sociedad v Barcelona
2 Mar
Barcelona v Almeria
9 Mar
Valladolid v Barcelona
16 Mar
Barcelona v Osasuna
23 Mar
Real Madrid v Barcelona
27 Mar
Barcelona v Celta
30 Mar
Espanyol v Barcelona
6 Apr
Barcelona v Betis
13 Apr
Granada v Barcelona
20 Apr
Barcelona v Athletic Bilbao
27 Apr
Villarreal v Barcelona
4 May
Barcelona v Getafe
11 May
Elche v Barcelona
18 May
Barcelona v Atletico Madrid

The clasicos this year take place on 26/27 October at the Nou camp, with teh return leg at Real Madrid’s Santiago Bernabeu stadium on 22/23 March 2014. Hopefully without Jose Mourinho at Madrid the clasicos will not descend into the mud slinging and poor sportsmanship we’ve seen recently, which has mired Spanish football.

For FC Barcelona tickets for the Spanish League this season visit our homepage.

FC Barcelona fixtures: summer 2013 and beyond

July 9th, 2013

As usual Barça has arranged a number of friendly fixtures prior to the new season, starting on 20th July with a match against Lechia Gdansk, followed a few days later by Pep Guardiola’s new club, Bayern Munich, and then Norwegian club Valerenga.

And then Santos visit to play in the Gamper Trophy on 2nd August, before FC Barcelona jets off to the Far East for a short tour to warm the players up for the league, which this year kicks of on the weekend of 17/18 August against Levante.

That is followed by the Spanish Supercup, which takes place on the 20th and 28th of August (dates to be confirmed) against Atletico Madrid, with the first leg away.

Earlier today the 2013-2014 Spanish League draw took place, which is now up on the website. We’re now awaiting pricing information before we are ale to accept orders, so watch this space for more details.

This year sees the first “clasico” against Real Madrid at the Nou Camp on 26/27 October, with the Bernabeu return leg on 22/23 March.

La Liga 2012/2013 – standing after week 38

June 3rd, 2013

Barcelona finished the 2012/2013 season in style with a 4-1 win against Malaga that saw the Catalans end of 100 points at the top of the table. The players can take a well earned break until the pre-season friendlies start in July; for information on next year’s fixture list make sure you join our email newsletter for details direct to your inbox.

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Barcelona beats Malaga to end season in 100 points

June 3rd, 2013

Barcelona was looking to end the season on a high note by finishing on 100 points and they certainly went out with that aim in mind. Quickly the Catalans established the pace when David Villa scored in the second minute, assisted by Iniesta and Pedro.

Iniesta also helped set up the second goal for Cesc Fabregas in the 13th minute, with Montoya making it 3-0 just two minutes later and just about settling the result of the match; Malaga gained some focus but were unable to score.

Back on after the break Iniesta scored Barcelona’s fourth goal of the night; 115 goals in the season is a new record for the club, beating the previous record of 114 set just last year. Malaga staged a small comeback just minutes later to score their only goal of the match, but all the glory went to Barcelona.

It’s the end of another season that has gone well in many ways, but the Champions League was not to be again and neither was the Copa del Rey; Tito Vilanova suffered a reoccurrence of his cancer and was absent for a few weeks while undergoing treatment; and the familiar face of Eric Abidal, who went through his own battle with cancer and underwent a liver transplant, will no longer be seen in the Nou Camp although he has apparently been offered a staff job once his career as a player has finished.

The draw for the 2013-2014 Spanish League will take place in July and as soon as we have details they will be posted on Simply Barcelona Tickets; to receive email notification please join our mailing list.

1-0 Villa (min 2)
2-0 Cesc (min 13)
3-0 Montoya (min 15)
4-0 Iniesta (min 50)
4-1 Morales (min 54)

Barcelona wins Copa Catalunya on penalty shootout

May 30th, 2013

FC Barcelona beat Espanyol last night in the final of the Copa Catalunya, played in Lleida.

Barcelona fielded a squad full of B-team players and found it difficult to overcome Espanyol, who they played in the league on Sunday, and it was Espanyol who scored the opener.

In fact, it looked until the end that Espanyol would take the title, with Cesc Fabregas only scoring for Barça in the 89th minute. When the match went to a penalty shootout Barcelona dominated, scoring 4 times to Espanyol’s 2.

Simao (min 19)
Fàbregas (min 89)

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