FC Barcelona News: 15 January 2011; Barça Take on Real Betis, Bartra Celebrates Birthday

Real Madrid (barely) did their job yesterday, will Barça also celebrate a victory today?

Guardiola: "We’ll be competing right up to the end" | FC Barcelona
"People should know that I am convinced that we'll be competing right up to the end. After that, whether we win or not I can't control." However, Guardiola has a lot of faith in his players' ambition: "There are 63 points left to play for – that's a lot of points and my sole objective is to get across to the players that we have to make these 63 points count. We've got a chance so why shouldn't we go for it?"

Spotlight on Betis | FC Barcelona
Betis spent two seasons in the second division before winning the league title and promotion in 2011 and in their last league game at the Camp Nou in 2009, they lost 3-2, with Eto’o (2) and Gudjohnson getting the Barça goals, whilst the 1-1 draw they managed in Barcelona in 2007 – with a last gasp equaliser from Sobis - handed Real Madrid a league lead they never gave up.

Guardiola's goal against Betis | FC Barcelona
On January 17th, 1999, Josep Guardiola scored Barça’s third goal in Seville against Betis. Guardiola closed out Barça's scroing on the night with an indirect free kick inside the area in the 84th minute. It was Guardiola’s only goal against Betis in his playing career. Figo and Luis Enrique had scored Barça’s first two goals.

What happened next for Bojan, Jeffren, Oriol Romeu & Hleb - how Barcelona's summer exits are faring at their new clubs in 2011-12 - Goal.com
After leaving the best club in the world, the only way is down. But not all players produce their best in the intimidating environment of the Camp Nou, where pressure to perform is at a high and where only the very best is good enough. So how are Barcelona's recently-discarded stars performing in 2011-12?

Qatar youth have great potential: FCB coach | Gulf Times
The Qatar Foundation (QF) and FC Barcelona (FCB) met on the field for the first time since their partnership began a year ago. The friendly but heated game that ended with a 3-1 win for FC Barcelona on Friday was played at the Qatar Academy football pitch.

Real Madrid survive scare to go clear - ESPN Soccernet
Jose Callejon's late strike spared Real Madrid's blushes and secured a 2-1 win at Real Mallorca to extend Los Blancos' lead at the top of La Liga. Mallorca had looked on course to claim a shock win after Tomer Hemed gave them a 39th-minute lead but Madrid drew level through substitute Gonzalo Higuain 18 minutes from time before Callejon netted an 84th-minute winner for Jose Mourinho's men.

Mallorca's Joaquin Caparros: We lacked luck against Real Madrid - Goal.com
"We had merit, but you already know that my theory is that these merits should be followed by results and, against Madrid, we lacked a bit of luck," he told reporters after the match. "We stood up to Madrid, who went for the victory in the second half, and it was very hard to keep this pressure during the entire match."

Cartoon of the Day: Demanding Di Stefano leads Cristiano Ronaldo boo brigade - Goal.com
As if losing out to Lionel Messi in the race for Ballon d'Or was not enough to leave Cristiano Ronaldo in the doldrums this week, the Portuguese attacker has come under criticism from Real Madrid legend Alfredo Di Stefano. Despite Ronaldo being in top form for most of the season, certain supporters have voiced their dissatisfaction at the performances of the former Manchester United man.

Granero in Reds frame | Sky Sports
Granero is finding his chances severely limited at the Santiago Bernabeu under Jose Mourinho. Only this week reports in Spain claimed Mourinho wanted Granero to remain, despite only three Primera Liga appearances this term. But now Granero's agent says that the 24-year-old could very well be on the move this month, and Liverpool are reported to be one of those looking to land him.

Valencia slump to home defeat - Yahoo! Eurosport
Valencia passed up the chance to move to within a point of Barcelona in La Liga when suffering a hugely disappointing 1-0 defeat to Real Sociedad at the Mestalla. Sociedad inflicted only a fourth defeat of the season on Valencia when Antoine Griezmann benefitted from a sizeable slice of luck to score with a deflected effort after 55 minutes.

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