FC Barcelona News: 24 April 2013; Barça Humbled in Munich

Alex Grimm

Bayern Munich 4-0 Barcelona: Bayern produce an astonishingly dominant performance | Zonal Marking
Jupp Heynckes selected Mario Gomez rather than Claudio Pizarro as Mario Mandzukic’s replacement, and decided Jerome Boateng was a better option than Daniel van Buyten because of his extra speed. Tito Vilanova’s side was as expected: Lionel Messi was fit, and Alexis Sanchez started as wide forward on the left, with Pedro Rodriguez on the right.

FC Bayern München- FC Barcelona: Bayern impose their will (4-0) | FC Barcelona
Heynckes’ team came into the game on a great run of form and they continued that with a powerful performance against a Barça side who looked duller both physically and mentally, with Messi failing to live up to his normal stellar standards, but who dominated possession and can consider themselves unlucky to be on the end of such a big defeat.

Jordi Roura: "It's a very painful defeat" | FC Barcelona
After this evening’s 4-0 defeat to Bayern Munich, Jordi Roura explained that his "players are sad and frustrated." He added: "This was a game that we were excited about and the result is awful. We’re all sad but this is football. We have to keep on going. The defeat is very painful and it complicates our chances of getting to the final."

Gerard Piqué: "They were the better side, they were superior" | FC Barcelona
"They are faster and they are stronger. They played better than we did and this Tuesday they were superior. We need to pick ourselves up, play well in the return leg and win La Liga as soon as possible," said Piqué, who noted that the referee did not influence the outcome of the match.

Jordi Alba to miss the return leg due to suspension | FC Barcelona
Tito Vilanova won’t be able to call on Jordi Alba for the return leg of the Champions League semi-final against Bayern Munich. The left back was booked on the 89th minute for throwing the ball at Robben’s face when the German side were preparing to execute a throw in.

Messi: Bayern defeat a disgrace - Goal.com
Barca's loss represented their heaviest defeat in European competition and Messi conceded that the odds are against the Catalans turning the tie around at Camp Nou next week. "It's 4-0 and it will be difficult because they are a great team," Messi told reporters. "They were a lot stronger than us – physically superior in fact. It's a disgrace what happened, but we have to go on.

'The worst result ever' - but Barcelona's problems run far deeper than muted Messi - Goal.com
With Messi at full fitness, it may not have come to this, but Barcelona must learn to operate when their star man is stifled (which seems to happen more often in the biggest games now), while the defensive debacle needs to be addressed in the summer, along with the coaching situation and much, much more.

Barca in for Handanovic - Yahoo! Eurosport UK
Whilst reports of late suggest that Barca are primarily interested in Valencia’s Vicente Guaita, the Corriere dello Sport and Sky Italia both believe that Inter’s Handanovic has entered into contention. The Slovenian only moved to the Nerazzurri last year, but is seen as a candidate for Barcelona this summer, with a £25 million bid suggested as a figure.

Spain 'must stamp out matchfixing' - Yahoo! Eurosport UK
"If matches can be fixed that shows that the competition is not in the proper shape," the paper quoted Tebas as saying. "We have to take a step further in denouncing something that is happening, in isolation, but it is taking place," he added, without naming specific cases of wrongdoing.

Monaco interested in Isco - Yahoo! Eurosport UK
Isco has caught the attention this season with his form and, despite signing a new contract at La Rosaleda in January, has continually been linked with a summer departure in light of Malaga’s financial uncertainty. Monaco, who are owned by Russian billionaire Dmitry Rybolovlev are said to be interested and ready to make an offer of £24 million at the end of the season.

Unassuming Levante’s brush with an upset | Pitchside Europe - Yahoo! Eurosport UK
Ten minutes into the game, a large moustacheiod man in a tracksuit sat in the next seat. Soon after, he cursed when a penalty was awarded to Barcelona, then smiled when it was saved. This wasn’t the action of a journalist, who is supposed to remain impartial. The man was Pepe Martinez Puig, Levante’s goalkeeping coach.

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