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FC Barcelona News: 24 September 2011; Barça Face-Off Against Atlético Madrid, Gerard Pique Given Medical Green Light, UEFA Change Calendar

Michel Platini has given in to the demands to reduce the number of international friendlies.
Michel Platini has given in to the demands to reduce the number of international friendlies.

UEFA set to reduce international friendly calendar - ESPN Soccernet
A UEFA statement following the meeting read: "The overriding support was for a calendar made up only of double-headers and no single friendly dates, in particular in the month of August, which would help to streamline the competition calendar for national teams and help avoid clashes with domestic leagues.

Guardiola expects fantastic game |
"People coming to the stadium will see a fantastic football match" said Guardiola, as he also rightly said ahead of the game with Valencia. A game against Atlético Madrid always promises excitement, and asked to comment on his rival coach, Manzano, the Barça boss said "it is a completely different team to a few years ago.

Gerard Piqué declared fit |
Piqué has been sidelined for a month with a hamstring injury which has meant he has yet to play any Liga games and also missed the European Supercup game in Monaco and the Champions League meeting with AC Milan. He hasn’t appeared for Barça since the second leg of the Spanish Supercup game at Camp Nou in mid August.

'Real Madrid play like a small team', says Barcelona legend Carles Rexach -
"You cannot say they lack attitude, but they are far from playing like a big team," he is quoted as saying by Marca. "They play like a small team and with the players they have, they should play with less aggressiveness and more possession of the ball."

Cesc one short of César and Ibra record |
Ever since signing for Barça, Cesc Fàbregas has proved his ability to find the net. He has scored six goals in eight appearances, including four in the league. Only the legendary César and Swede Ibrahimovic have ever scored in more consecutive games from the start of a season. If Cesc scores at the Camp Nou on Saturday, he will have matched the achievement of those two great strikers.

Messi starts voting for FIFPro |
Leo Messi has cast the first vote for the FIFPro 2011 Awards, which recognises the best player in the world and the best eleven, promoted by the World Association of Professional Footballers. Last year’s winner posted his vote at the Ciutat Esportiva Joan Gamper in the company of representatives of AFE and FIFPro.

Feyenoord's Jordy Clasie: I would have turned down Arsenal, Chelsea & Barcelona -
Feyenoord midfielder Jordy Clasie is very pleased with life at the Rotterdam side and has stressed that he would not have left the club - even if Arsenal, Chelsea or Barcelona had made a move for him during his younger years.

Real Madrid's Jose Mourinho: Crisis? What crisis? - ESPN Soccernet
"Some people are talking about a crisis, a dramatic situation in which we couldn't even fight to stay up,'' he said. ''There are people interested in talking about this crisis and people that just stick to the facts: that there is no crisis, rather that we have not played well the past week.

Shin bone fracture floors Igor | LFP
Athletic Club forward Igor Martínez picked up a serious injury during the second half of Wednesday’s meeting with Málaga. Medical staff confirmed on Thursday that the player has fractured his right shin bone.

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