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FC Barcelona News: 17 January 2012; Barça Lose Former Captain, Fontas Surgery Date Set

The team is excited about playing at the Bernabeu again.
The team is excited about playing at the Bernabeu again.

Juan Carlos Pérez, Barça's captain in 1973/74, dies | FC Barcelona
Juan Carlos was born in Santander on February 14th, 1945. In his footballing years he was known by all, when he arrived to FC Barcelona from Racing in 1968 he was one of the best midfielders in Spain. His work in the middle was extremely valuable to the team, he was one of the few players that successfully united his technique with his sacrificial attitude on the pitch.

Rosell offers his condolences after the death of Juan Carlos | FC Barcelona
Today is a sad day in Can Barça. FC Barcelona lost one of its most emblematic captains, Juan Carlos Pérez, this Monday. President Sandro Rosell lamented the captain’s death: "it’s sorrowful news for us. He died before his time, but that is life. I wish his family strength. We are with them. If they need anything, we are here for them."

Pep Guardiola backs Barcelona to handle cup cauldron - ESPN Soccernet
Barcelona coach Pep Guardiola believes his players can handle the pressure of a Copa del Rey quarter-final against great rivals Real Madrid despite trailing them in the Primera Division title race.''It's a (cup) tie not a league game. I have not noticed any signs in my players that they do not want to win titles,'' said Guardiola in quotes reported by Marca.

Xavi: "we will be as bold as ever in the Bernabeu" | FC Barcelona
Xavi also reckons there will be no need for special incentive for the game: "these games have an extra motivational factor, which means the team are really fired up from the start. They are a historic rival and it's a special ground." The Catalan also commented on Mourinho's team's current form: "they are now going toe to toe with us. They pressure us more up the pitch. Theirs is a very direct football, with players who can kill you on the break and are really fast up front."

Barcelona's Dani Alves: We love playing against Real Madrid - ESPN Soccernet
Barcelona right-back Dani Alves says his side always relish the prospect of locking horns with arch-rivals Real Madrid, as the two clubs prepare to do battle in the Copa del Rey. Wednesday's quarter-final first-leg at the Bernabeu will be Barca and Real's eighth meeting in just nine months, with the previous outcomes three wins for the Catalans, one for Los Blancos and three draws.

Barcelona defender Eric Abidal emerges as the inspiration to a young boy with a brain tumour -
He was soon granted a hospital visit from Abidal and Garcia Serra went on to speak of the emotion in the room after the former Lyon man's appearance produced tears from his son. "He [Abidal] was affectionate, gentle, sympathetic and didn't stop hugging him for 10 minutes. He said: 'Come, come, brother, I'm here to cheer. I'm also fighting this disease and I'm glad to set up a foundation for sick kids.'"

Fontàs to undergo surgery this Saturday | FC Barcelona
Andreu Fontàs will be operated on by Doctors Ramon Cugat and Ricard Pruna this Saturday for the ruptured cruciate ligament he suffered in Pamplona last Thursday. After the operation, at approximately 13.00, both Doctors will hold a press conference at the Ciutat Esportiva Joan Gamper.

Barca: No Neymar deal before 2014 - Yahoo! Eurosport
Barcelona president Sandro Rosell says the Spanish and European champions will not sign Neymar before 2014. The brilliant Brazil striker has been repeatedly linked with a move to either Barcelona or Real Madrid but has so far refused the lure of Europe to remain with Santos.

Cristiano Ronaldo: I don't feel pressure for Barcelona tie - ESPN Soccernet
Real Madrid star Cristiano Ronaldo insists that he does not feel the pressure ahead of Wednesday's Copa del Rey match at home against Barcelona. Ronaldo has only hit one goal in his last four games for Real and was anonymous in his side's 3-1 La Liga loss against Barca back in December 2011. However, the Portugal international will not be treating the Clasico any different to any other game.

Real Madrid's Pepe doubtful for Barcelona Copa del Rey clash -
Real Madrid coach Jose Mourinho could be forced to make do without the services of defender Pepe in the first leg of the Copa del Rey quarter-final against Barcelona on Wednesday as the Portuguese centre-back has picked up a thigh injury. Pepe sustained the knock during last Saturday's 2-1 La Liga win over Real Mallorca, and was forced to sit out Monday's squad training due to the thigh problem.

Real Madrid's Angel Di Maria to miss Barcelona clash after picking up new injury - report -
The 23-year-old sat out the team's past few matches due to a thigh problem, but resumed regular training action again last week. Di Maria was widely expected to make his comeback in the home game against Barcelona, but Marca reports that he has suffered another knock, and will have to watch from the stands. Madrid are yet to confirm the absence of the 23-year-old, but head coach Jose Mourinho is expected to clarify the situation of the winger at a press conference later on Tuesday.

Atlético's favourite son Diego Simeone returns to light up the Calderón | Sid Lowe |
The performance was not quite as sparkling as some in the media have made out and Villarreal were awful but there did appear to be a greater application about Atlético; more communion between manager and players and fans. Simeone made a point of embracing the players he replaced and leading the applause of the stands – Diego, in particular, got an impressive ovation – bringing a unity sorely lacking before.

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