Tag Archives: tito

Stop the strops, warns Real Madrid boss Jose Mourinho

Stop the strops, Mourinho orders Real Madrid stars to focus on Barcelona

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UPDATED:

21:28 GMT, 6 October 2012

Jose Mourinho has urged his players to
stop complaining about team selection and focus on closing the gap by
beating La Liga leaders Barcelona at Camp Nou.

'Now is not the time for dramas if a certain player is left on the bench,' he said.

Warning: Real Madrid boss Jose Mourinho

Warning: Real Madrid boss Jose Mourinho

'I am paid to pick the team. Some players don't make the first team and that is the end of it. I pick the team on form.'

Madrid have already lost twice in the league and will be 11 points behind Barcelona if they lose.

Defeat would also hand Mourinho's rival Tito Vilanova a seventh victory and the record for the most consecutive wins at the start of a season for any Barcelona coach.

Barcelona eye Newcastle keeper Tim Krul as rival to Victor Valdes

Barcelona eye Newcastle keeper Krul as back-up for Valdes

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UPDATED:

06:17 GMT, 19 September 2012

Barcelona are ready to make a move for Newcastle keeper Tim Krul.

The 24-year-old Dutchman has caught the eye after establishing himself as the Toon's No 1.

Safe hands: Newcastle goalkeeper Tim Krul

Safe hands: Newcastle goalkeeper Tim Krul

And Barcelona want long-term competition for first-choice Victor
Valdes, reports the Daily Mirror.

Barca's current reserve keeper, Jose Pinto, is 36 years old and
is set to leave the Nou Camp when his deal expires next summer.

Coach Tito Vilanova has ordered his scouts to find him a top class
replacement

Cesc Fabregas happy to fight for Barcelona place

I'm going nowhere! Fabregas up for Barca fight as he eyes Champions League revenge

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UPDATED:

06:15 GMT, 17 September 2012

Cesc Fabregas has backed himself to win his fight for a place in the Barcelona starting line-up, quashing speculation he could leave his boyhood club.

The former Arsenal captain moved back to the Nou Camp in 2011 for 35million, and despite a flurry of goals early his career, his form has slipped and he is back on the fringes of the first team.

Fabregas recently allowed his frustrations to show in an interview with Catalan radio, leading to talk that he could return to the club where he spent eight years of career.

Not so mellow yellow: Cesc Fabregas is ready to fight for his place at Barcelona

Not so mellow yellow: Cesc Fabregas is ready to fight for his place at Barcelona

However, the 25-year-old was aware the switch back 'home' would represent a major challenge and he insists he is ready for the fight.

He said: 'I said when I signed here that it was going to be the most exciting and difficult challenge of my life. I knew I was coming to compete for a place against the best players in the world. But I like big challenges.

'If I didn’t I would have stayed at Arsenal where I was the captain, where I played every game and where I was treated so well.

'I have a big heart, a strong character and I have the courage to carry on competing for my place.'

Fabregas moved to the then Spanish champions confident of winning silverware, something which alluded him for much of his time in north London.

Disappointments: Fabregas was the main man but won little at Arsenal

Disappointments: Fabregas was the main man but won little at Arsenal

However, Barca were beaten to the La Liga
title by Real Madrid and missed out on a place in the Champions League
final to Chelsea in what proved to be the final straw for Pep Guardiola.

The former manager was Fabregas' idol
growing up at the famed La Masia academy, but now he works under Tito
Volanova and has every hope that his team can avenge their shock
semi-final exit to the 10 men of Chelsea this time around.

Speaking to The Sun, he added: 'To play in the Champions League final at Wembley would be a dream. I would love to be there, that would be something very special.

Frustrations: Fabregas was part of the Barca side knocked out Europe by Chelsea

Frustrations: Fabregas was part of the Barca side knocked out Europe by Chelsea

'Special for me because I love London so much and had eight happy years there. But special for Barcelona too because we have very happy memories there.

'Wembley is a big part of our history. It was at Wembley in 1992 that Ronald Koeman’s free-kick won Barcelona the European Cup for the first time.

'And last year Barca beat Manchester United at Wembley to become the champions of Europe again. People said it was the perfect performance, they praised the “beautiful football”.

'In an ideal world it would be great to play Chelsea in the final and get revenge for last season. That would be unbelievable.'

Barcelona after Arsenal"s Alex Song

Barcelona hit bum note with Arsenal as they plot 12m move for midfielder Song

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UPDATED:

14:04 GMT, 31 July 2012

Arsenal are bracing themselves for a fresh transfer tussle after it emerged Barcelona were preparing a bid for Alex Song.

The Cameroon international was one of the Gunners star performers during an indifferent season, striking up a particularly profitable relationship with Robin van Persie.

It is the Dutchman who is at the centre of another saga following the release of a statement on his website which questioned the ambitions of the club.

There is no suggestion Song himself is angling for a move, but the midfielder's contract is up for renewal in two years and he is a strong position to negotiate favourable terms.

Sing up for the Arsenal: Alex Song is being linked with a move to Barcelona

Sing up for the Arsenal: Alex Song is being linked with a move to Barcelona

Barcelona are keen to strengthen the defensive side of their game having let go Seydou Keita during the summer window. They also struggled with the defeat in the heart of their backline last season, often relying on midfielders Javier Mascherano and Sergio Busquets.

And now Catalan newspaper Sport say new manager Tito Vilanova will move for Song – a decision sanctioned by the players and coaching staff – to the tune of 12.5m.

The report also suggests Song and Cesc Fabregas – who left north London for the Nou Camp a year ago – maintain a strong friendship.

Barcelona to go back in for Daniel Agger

Liverpool's Agger interesting Barcelona after Spaniards balk at Martinez value

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UPDATED:

21:50 GMT, 17 July 2012

Barcelona are set to revive their interest in Liverpool defender Daniel Agger.

Coach Tito Vilanova wants a defender who can also play in midfield, with the other alternative, Athletic Bilbao’s Javi Martinez, too expensive.

The 27-year-old Agger, about whom Barca enquired in January, would represent much better value for money.

Reign in Spain: Daniel Agger is attracting interest from La Liga big guns

Reign in Spain: Daniel Agger is attracting interest from La Liga big guns

Spanish rivals Real Madrid have themselves made tentative enquiries about the Dane, who excelled at Euro 2012.

Agger himself is not agitating for a move, but is still getting used to live under new Liverpool boss Brendan Rodgers.

Barcelona returned to training on Tuesday.

Arsenal rival Barcelona for Toulouse midfielder Etienne Capoue

Arsenal and Barcelona in battle for Toulouse midfielder Capoue

Arsenal face a battle with Spanish giants Barcelona for the signature of 9.5m-rated Toulouse midfielder Etienne Capoue.

Arsenal boss Arsene Wenger has lined up a move for Capoue after cooling his interest in Rennes midfielder Yann M'Vila, reports talkSPORT.

Highly rated: Arsene Wenger wants Etienne Capoue in his Arsenal midfield

Highly rated: Arsene Wenger wants Etienne Capoue in his Arsenal midfield

However, reports in the Catalan
media suggest that new Barcelona manager Tito Vilanova has identified
Capoue and M'Vila as potential replacements for Seydou Keita, who has
ended his four-year Nou Camp spell to join Chinese club Dalian Aerbin.

And having spent a portion of his
summer transfer budget on Spain left-back Jordi Alba, Vilanova could opt
for Capoue, who would cost the Catalan club 6.5m less than France
international M'Vila.

Barcelona sign Jordi Alba

Alba goes home to Barcelona as Spanish giants beat United to 12m Spain left-back

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UPDATED:

13:52 GMT, 28 June 2012

Barcelona have signed Valencia full-back Jordi Alba for 11.7million, beating Manchester United to the Spain international.

The 23-year-old, who is currently on duty at Euro 2012, will pen a five-year contract once he has passed his medical, Barca have confirmed.

A Barcelona statement on the club's website read: 'Barcelona announce that today they reached an agreement with Valencia for the transfer of Jordi Alba, who will undergo his medical next week.

No pain for Spain: Jordi Alba has completed a move to Barcelona from Valencia

No pain for Spain: Jordi Alba has completed a move to Barcelona from Valencia

'The cost of the operation will be 14million euros and the player will sign a contract for the next five seasons.'

Attacking left-back Alba, whose contract with Valencia was due to expire in June 2013, is no stranger to Barcelona.

Born in the Catalan city of L'Hospitalet, Alba spent seven years at Barca's famous La Masia youth academy from 1998 to 2005.

Afterwards he played for local lower-league side Cornella for two years before joining Valencia in 2007.

At the Mestalla, Alba was part of the Valencia reserve side that was promoted to Segunda B before spending the 2008/09 season on loan at Gimnastic Tarragona.

Pastures new: Jordi Alba (right) will hope for more success at his new club

Pastures new: Jordi Alba (right) will hope for more success at his new club

On returning to Valencia he soon became a regular in coach Unai Emery's first team, making 74 league appearances in three seasons, scoring five goals.

That earned him international recognition, with his debut coming against Scotland last October. He has won 10 caps to date and has been an ever-present in Spain's five Euro 2012 matches so far, helping them through to Sunday's final.

Alba is Barcelona's first signing of the summer as they build towards next season under new coach Tito Vilanova, who has replaced Pep Guardiola.

Arsenal"s Thomas Vermaelen pictured with Barcelona"s Carles Puyol in Ibiza

Getting cosy with the Barca boys Arsenal ace Vermaelen pictured with Puyol in Ibiza

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UPDATED:

12:52 GMT, 20 June 2012

It's a picture Arsenal fans would rather not see: their inspirational centre-back Thomas Vermaelen enjoying a night out with Barcelona defender Carles Puyol at a restaurant in Ibiza.

The Catalan giants are considering a bid for Vermaelen after hitting a brick wall in attempts to sign Thiago Silva from AC Milan.

Nou Camp boss Tito Vilanova made Silva his top central defensive target but the Catalans set aside less than 30million for the deal – while sources in Italy claim Milan have already turned down a 32.5m bid from Paris Saint-Germain.

Fancy seeing you here! Vermaelen and Puyol pose for a snap in Ibiza

Fancy seeing you here! Vermaelen and Puyol pose for a snap in Ibiza

Belgium international Vermaelen, 26, fits the bill because of his ability to also play at left back and in midfield, but Arsenal are likely to resist any approach.

But Gunners fans will not be reassured to see Vermaelen and Puyol together with talismanic captain Robin van Persie's future still up in the air.

Arsenal remain determined to get their skipper to sign a three-year deal worth 130,000 a week with a 5m loyalty bonus.

Van Persie's representatives have held two rounds of talks with Arsenal, when the 28-year-old said he was not ready to sign new terms.

Who's next Captain Van Persie's future remains unclear

Who's next Captain Van Persie's future remains unclear

Tito Vilanova signs two-year Barcelona deal

New era at Barcelona begins as Vilanova pens deal as Guardiola replacement

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UPDATED:

12:04 GMT, 15 June 2012

Life after Pep Guardiola has officially has begun at Barcelona after his replacement, Tito Vilanova, put pen to paper on his two-year contract with the La Liga club.

Guardiola announced in April that he would be leaving Barca following four trophy-laden years at the Nou Camp. The 42-year-old Vilanova was Guardiola's assistant.

Sign here: Tito Vilanova has officially put pen to paper on a two-year deal

Sign here: Tito Vilanova has officially put pen to paper on a two-year deal

End of the road: Pep Guardiola

End of the road: Pep Guardiola

Vilanova, having been named as Barca's new coach immediately after his old boss announced his decision to step down, was formally confirmed in the post on Wednesday and on Friday signed his contract at the office of Barca president Sandro Rosell.

A statement on the club website confirmed: 'Vilanova has signed his new contract as first-team coach until June 30, 2014 in front of president Rosell, sporting vice-president Josep Maria Bartomeu, sporting director Andoni Zubizarreta and the coach's representative.

'At this same act, Jordi Roura has signed his new contract as assistant coach of the first team, and Aureli Altimira as fitness coach.

'With Tito Vilanova on the bench of the first team, the continuity of a model of play that is recognised throughout the world is assured. Girona-born Vilanova becomes the 16th Catalan coach in the club's history.'