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El Clásico round-up: two days to go

What their saying…

Spanish Prime Minister Jose Luis Rodriguez Zapatero 

The PM predicted on Friday that Barcelona will crush Real Madrid 4-2. He said: "Barcelona caresses and cultivates the intelligence of football and converts it into something more than a physical contact sport. Sometimes it recalls a game of chess."

He also said he respected Real Madrid’s tough-talking Jose Mourinho, but in terms of personality he prefers Barcelona’s Catalan coach Pep Guardiola and that he prefers Leo Messi’s “dribbles” over the playing style of Cristiano Ronaldo.

Gerard Pique

"You can’t say this game will decide the League title, but it is certainly very important. Maybe this season the distance between other teams has shortened but I’m sure that Barcelona and Real Madrid will be the two teams that fight for the League title till the end. Right now this is the best or one of the best games in the world. So it makes sense that there’s much talk about it.”

"Pep is a coach who likes to have everything completely under control, he wants everything to be tied, and not leave anything to chance. He prepares very well for matches, studies them to the maximum."

"Real Madrid have two years without winning anything and it’s logical to seek a shock, something new. They have a good coach, you can’t deny that. In England he succeeded, as he did in Inter. In his team, everything revolves around him. He is an incentive to try to keep winning. No doubt he has had a positive effect for Real Madrid, but he has inspired us, is an extra motivation.”

Carles Puyol

"Both Barça and Madrid are playing well and confidently, and have few injury concerns. We have the advantage of playing at home, but I still think it’s 50/50."

"Madrid are very strong in defence, they place themselves well. They have very fast players on the counter and they make all the difference. If you give them space, they are hard to control.”

“Nothing motivates us more. Madrid is always an important match… but the league will not be decided by this game”. 

Read more …

Filed under Carles Puyol FC Barcelona Gerard Pique Sergio Busquets el clasico Iker Casillas Jose Mourinho David Villa Cristiano Ronaldo Gonzalo Higuain

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El Clásico round-up

Four days to go and what they have to say…

Xabi Alonso

“This Barca team is very good, and are still very good. In recent years they have won many titles, and we will fight hard to beat us because it will be crucial. The two matches, both at the Camp Nou and the return will be very important.

“However, there are many more points also to be played for, so the match will not be decisive, but the result will still be important for those with aspirations of the title. This team has great potential in attack, with great scoring ability. If we play well as a team, and are strong in attack and defence, that is the recipe to win at the Camp Nou.”

Sergio Ramos

“Barcelona are a team full of good players, such as Iniesta and Xavi, but if I could remove anyone, it would Lionel Messi.”

“The match at the Camp Nou will be very difficult. Both teams arrive here in great form and mood, and although this match seems like just three points, it is a very special match and I think this year we will win.”

Alvaro Arbeloa

 "It will be a clash between two of the best teams in the world, each with its own style and characteristics. Each has its own weapons and options. It’s hard to say which team is better. I side with mine, naturally, but things are very even as of today."

"We have no anti-Messi or anti-missile plans. I’d rather none of their 18 men played (laughs). They are a great team. Messi, Xavi, Pedro was phenomenal the other day… Barcelona are an enormously competitive team. They have quality players that make a difference. Seriously, I want all of their best men on the pitch on Monday. I am confident we can defeat the best Barcelona."

"Cristiano and Messi are currently the two most decisive men on either side, but it would be unfair on others to focus solely on them. There will be 20 more players on the pitch and all should be followed closely."

Xavi

"It’s an important game and we’re favourites because we’re playing at home. We are in form and playing well. We respect Madrid a lot and will try to win the game.”

Pedro

“We are all excited by el clasico. We come with confidence, we are playing well and hopefully we are able to take all the points at Camp Nou.

Gerard Pique

"These games are at 50%, no matter the form the teams arrive in. I think we are at a good level. The team has a lot of confidence and we are going to be at home. The conditions are optimal.” 

Filed under Alvaro Arbeloa Real Madrid Sergio Ramos Xabi Alonso xavi hernández Pedro Rodriguez Gerard Pique FC Barcelona el clásico

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Piqué: “Barça are El clásico favorites”

(photo credit: @gerardromero)

El clásico: "It is clear that at home we are favourites, but anything can happen in this match. However we know that we are able to win, and we are very confident. Whether or not this Real Madrid is stronger, the culture of Madrid is winning, and they win many games.”

Mourinho’s relationship with the media: “He [Mourinho] seems to speak much of Barcelona, but in the end, everyone responds to the questions they are asked. We know that there are many people who believe in what they read in the media, and of what Mourinho says, but we are not concerned by it. If we do what we know, within ourselves, then we can move forward.”

"…seems that in Madrid there is more freedom of expression. Everything they say is fine. But what we say in Barcelona seems to be wrong.”

Filed under Gerard Pique FC Barcelona

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Piqué strikes again!

Remember this? Yesterday during the game against Ceuta history was repeated when Piqué was busy playing, the game a prank from the stands.  

and watch it here

Today Piqué posted two pictures with the victim of his prank Juanjo Brau, Barça physio, on his facebook page. 

He said he was glad to have been on TV with his “pipas” (sunflower seeds) and that he’s working in gym with Juanjo. Also Puyi tweeted the first picture and said “their friends again”. What a crack!

Filed under FC Barcelona Gerard Pique

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Interviu magazine says that Joan Laporta spied on Ronaldinho, Deco, Eto’o and Gerard Pique during the 2007-08 seasion.The spying on Pique, one of the only four still in the club, lasted for a week, 24 hours a day, though they didn’t find anything to disapprove.

Interviu magazine says that Joan Laporta spied on Ronaldinho, Deco, Eto’o and Gerard Pique during the 2007-08 seasion.The spying on Pique, one of the only four still in the club, lasted for a week, 24 hours a day, though they didn’t find anything to disapprove.

Filed under gerard pique FC Barcelona