Super Pinto! - Denis Doyle
The Barcelona players react to yesterday's 1-1 draw at the Santiago Bernabeu and Dani Alves comments on the problem of racial abuse. Elsewhere, Marc Muniesa is registered as a B team player as he enters the final stage of his recovery from a serious knee injury
The Brazilian admitted this Thursday that the team "left the Bernabéu unhappy because of the circumstances of the game." He added, "we didn’t take advantage of the chances we had and now the tie will be decided at the Camp Nou. It’s a marvelous opportunity for us. We deserved to win and return from Madrid with a better result."
Without specifically mentioning Wednesday’s match, the FC Barcelona defender confessed that he’s upset with the racial abuse he was subjected to: "I know that we’re fighting against this type of behaviour, but for me it’s a lost war. I’ve been playing in Spain for 10 years and it’s been going on since the first day."
Arsenal have made an improved bid for David Villa, according to reports today. Barcelona have consistently said they are not willing to sell the Spain international, but reports today suggest Arsenal are looking to test their resolve with a bid of between £10m-£12m.
Real Madrid assistant coach Aitor Karanka believes Real Madrid's 1-1 draw with Barcelona in the first leg of their Copa del Rey semi-final shows there remains little to choose between the sides despite their current Primera Division positions. He said: "The real difference between the teams you see when we play. It is quite competitive. It was a great effort from all of the team because there were a number of players out of position."
Marc Muniesa will officially play for Barça B after the Club enrolled the player in the reserve side this Thursday. The defender is currently in the last stage of recovery after he sustained an ACL tear in his right knee. Muniesa picked up the injury during the pre-season match against Hamburg on the 24th of July.
Barcelona and Ajax Amsterdam are currently in negotiations for the loan of the 'azulgrana' wide man Isaac Cuenca, according to 'Mundo Deportivo.' The academy player is coming out of an injury that has kept him off the pitch for eight months, and coaches belive it's best for him to get minutes at a club with a philosophy like that of Ajax. However, the deal is yet to be closed and there are a number of teams that are chasing Cuenca's signature on this last day of the winter transfer window.
Turkey international Emre Belozoglu has rejoined Fenerbahce from Atletico Madrid for €350,000 after an unsuccessful spell in La Liga. The midfielder made over 100 appearances for the Turkish giants before joining Atletico in May but struggled to make an impact in Spain.
Chelsea are set to do battle with Barcelona in Europe again after the two club's youth sides were drawn together in the last 16 of the NextGen Series.