FC Barcelona News: 8 November 2013; Gerard Pique Doubtful for Real Betis Clash, Andoni Zubizarreta Extends Contract

Stanley Chou

Spain call up five FC Barcelona players | FC Barcelona
Xavi and Piqué were not called up by the Spain manager, and therefore they will stay in Barcelona for the duration of the international break. The center back incidentally trained apart from the group this afternoon due to a knock he picked up in the match against Milan.

Press react to FC Barcelona's win over AC Milan | FC Barcelona
The Madrid-based daily Marca also took note of Messi’s performance as it led with the headline "Messi crises are a breath in length" after Wednesday’s victory. "He’s still not at his top level, but he’s showing symptoms of recovery and that’s all he needs to decide games ... Messi led the Blaugrana to victory over Milan."

FC Barcelona - AC Milan, the movie | FC Barcelona
The Barça-Milan movie is here. Take a look at the hours leading up to kick off and what it was like at the Camp Nou once the game had ended. The footage is taken from a first person perspective, so you’ll know what the Barça and Milan players go through before and after a high-level match.

Piqué in doubt for Betis | FC Barcelona
After beating AC Milan to guarantee themselves a place in the last sixteen of the Champions League, the Barça squad returned to work today at the Ciutat Esportiva Joan Gamper. The starters against the Italian outfit went through the usual post-match recovery routine, apart from Sergio Busquets and Gerard Piqué, who had specific exercises to do.

Messi: "I will improve little by little, I'm not worried about it" | FC Barcelona
In an interview with UEFA.com, Messi said: "I’m calm. Little by little I’m getting my rhythm back. Playing 90 minutes is great for me to get back in physical shape and for me to recover the pace I had before the injury. The two injuries were nearly back to back, and it shows. Little by little I’ll recover my form, I’m not worried about it."

Adriano Correia: "We're close to excellence" | FC Barcelona
When asked about the 3-1 scoreline on Wednesday, which incidentally kept Barça’s undefeated streak in all competitions alive, the left back said: "We’re close to excellence. I’m pleased and satisfied with the result against Milan." He added: "There are times during games when we lose possession and we’re hit with a counterattack. We have to be careful when we have possession."

FC Barcelona extend contract with Andoni Zubizarreta to 2016 | FC Barcelona
Andoni Zubizarreta will be staying on as director of football until the end of the 2015/16 season after terms were agreed for the extension of his contract on Thursday November 7. His present contract is due to expire at the end of June 2014, but he’ll now be staying on an additional two years until June 30, 2016.

Ancelotti tops coaches' pay league - Yahoo Eurosport UK
The Italian, who signed with Los Blancos this summer after negotiating an exit from Paris Saint-Germain, is said to be on an annual salary of €7.5m. Futbolfinanzas.com have published a list of each La Liga Coaches’ wages and list Barcelona’s Tata Martino as second best paid, on €5.4m a year.

Real Madrid boss Carlo Ancelotti hopeful Xabi Alonso will sign new deal - ESPN FC
Carlo Ancelotti says the return of professor Xabi Alonso to fitness is great news, and he hopes the midfielder will now agree a new contract to stay at Real Madrid for next season and beyond. Alonso, 31, is out of contract at the Estadio Santiago Bernabeu next June, and has been linked persistently in recent months with moves to either Chelsea, Juventus or Real Sociedad.

Del Bosque calls up Brazil-born Costa for friendlies - Yahoo Eurosport UK
Top scorer in La Liga this season with 13 goals in 12 appearances, Costa signed a formal letter last month stating his wish to play for adopted country Spain and ending a tug-of-war between the world and European champions and Brazil over the 25-year-old. Tall and powerful in the air, Costa has excellent touch and vision and is a handful for defences who find it tough to cope with his physical approach.

Costa joining Spain one of football's biggest, best stories by Graham Hunter - ESPN FC
The root of the problem, the man who may debut in a Spain team next week and could well be treading the turf of Spain's World Cup-winning stadium next Tuesday despite having been born in Brazil and played for the Canarinha twice -- well, his name's Diego Costa.

Valencia climb to the top of Group A after edging 10-man St Gallen 3-2 | Sky Sports Football
Valencia climbed to the top of Group A after edging 10-man St Gallen 3-2 in the Europa League encounter at the AFG Arena. The Spaniards trailed 2-1 after 66 minutes before late goals from substitute Pablo Piatti and Sergio Canales earned them the win.

Sevilla held to a 1-1 draw by Slovan Liberec in Group H | Sky Sports Football
Sevilla spurned the chance to secure their place in the last 32 of the Europa League after being held 1-1 at home by Slovan Liberec in a game they dominated. A victory would have guaranteed the Spanish outfit a top-two finish in Group H and they looked likely to achieve that after taking a 29th-minute lead through Diego Perotti's free-kick, as well as doing almost all of the attacking.

Real Betis are in control of Group I after a 1-0 win over Guimaraes | Sky Sports Football
A late goal from Chuli put Real Betis in control of Europa League Group I as they claimed a 1-0 win over Guimaraes in Portugal. The two sides had been playing out a thoroughly uninspiring encounter but the 22-year-old struck in time added on to send the Spaniards top of the group.

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