FC Barcelona News: 18 October 2013; Carles Puyol Declared Fit After 220 Days, La Liga to Restart Tomorrow

David Ramos

Carles Puyol back after 220 days | FC Barcelona
Carles Puyol has been declared fit this Friday. His recovery has taken 220 days (seven months and one week), his last first team appearance being the dramatic comeback against AC Milan at the Camp Nou (4-0) on March 12, 2013. During this long absence, he has undergone arthroscopy for articular cleansing of his right knee as well as surgery to remove a Baker’s cyst from the same knee.

Sergio Busquets: "Winning in Pamplona will better help us approach the Clásico" | FC Barcelona
"The match on Saturday is very important and we, the players, know that we first have to play Osasuna, they are a tough team to beat at home. We’ve always had a hard time in their stadium, but we’ll try to come back with the three points," he said during this afternoon’s press conference. He’s clear that there’s nothing better to improve the team’s confidence than to win games.

Messi and Puyol in UEFA ‘No to Racism’ campaign | FC Barcelona
Leo Messi and Carles Puyol are two of the many faces of football appearing in the UEFA, ‘No to Racism’ campaign, which is seeking to eliminate all forms of xenophobia and discrimination from the game. UEFA has produced a video that features some of the biggest names in football, including Puyol and Messi, as well as players with a Barça past, namely Abidal, Cruyff and Figo.

Antonin Panenka urges Lionel Messi to change style - ESPN FC
"I have seen a lot of players try it, not everyone with success," Panenka said. "I really enjoy it when other players today follow my idea, that it lives on and has not died, it gives me a lot of satisfaction. For me it would be very exciting, a real honour that one of the best players in history tries it. Although his own style is doing pretty well for him so far."

Gareth Bale steps up to Real Madrid return - ESPN FC
Gareth Bale has returned to training with his Real Madrid teammates, while Raphael Varane is the club’s most serious injury concern following the international break.

Valencia president Aurelio Martinez denies club sale rumours - ESPN FC
Valencia foundation president Aurelio Martinez has again denied persistent rumours that the heavily indebted club is up for sale. La Liga side Valencia are in theory owned by the ‘Fundacion del Valencia CF’, but in practice Bankia - a troubled lender bailed out by the EU via the Spanish government to the tune of €19 billion in 2012 - controls a majority shareholding.

Prieto back for La Real | Football Espana
Xabi Prieto is back to full training for Real Sociedad and could feature in their weekend trip to Valencia. The team captain has been working on the sidelines since the end of September, after picking up a thigh strain during his side’s 4-1 loss to Barcelona in La Liga.

Santander could go bust - Yahoo Eurosport UK
Mired in bankruptcy proceedings and relegated twice in the past two seasons, Santander were looking to raise 3 million euros in the first phase of the operation, the club said on their website. They hoped eventually to reap a total of 25 million euros to prevent them from folding but would now have to rethink their strategy after failing to attract anywhere near the required amount of investment.

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