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FC Barcelona News: 18 April 2012; Barça Return to Stamford Bridge, Real Madrid Lose Against Bayern Munich

Lionel Messi of Barcelona shares a joke with team-mate Javier Mascherano during a training session ahead of their UEFA Champions League semi-final first leg match against Chelsea at Stamford Bridge on April 17, 2012 in London, England.
Lionel Messi of Barcelona shares a joke with team-mate Javier Mascherano during a training session ahead of their UEFA Champions League semi-final first leg match against Chelsea at Stamford Bridge on April 17, 2012 in London, England.

Guardiola: "It will be a tie with very few goals" | FC Barcelona
Josep Guardiola assured the packed press room that his team is very aware of the difficulties of tomorrow’s Champions League semi-final match at Stamford Bridge. The Azulgrana manager said that tomorrow’s match "is against one of the best teams in recent years," and that "it will be a tie with very few goals where small details will decide which team makes it to the final."

Cesc Fábregas ready to show his home improvements on return to London | Football | The Guardian
Eight months later, Cesc Fábregas returns to England a changed man. The stage will be familiar, his face too, but the Barcelona midfielder insists the footballer is not. He has evolved since returning home. Less decisive perhaps, less dynamic too, but better.

Cesc: "I signed for Barça to face challenges like the one against Chelsea" | FC Barcelona
The player, who arrived to FC Barcelona this summer, recognised that "I came here to improve and to have challenges like the ones that are waiting for us, Chelsea and Madrid. These are the types of games that I was expecting to play and enjoy." Along these lines, the Catalan added that lifting the Champions League trophy is "a great dream and I hope to realise it as an Azulgrana."

Terry and Puyol, club captains and icons | FC Barcelona
Chelsea and Barça have plenty of experience in their defences. And at the heart of one and the other are John Terry and Carles Puyol. Both are captains, both have a wealth of experience and both have experienced similar careers. The Englishman is 31 years old and the Catalan is 34, and both grew up through the youth systems at their respective clubs and are considered living legends by their supporters.

Chelsea - FC Barcelona: Did you know...? | FC Barcelona
Chelsea have won five consecutive matches at Stamford Bridge in the Champions League this season. They’ve scored 16 goals and only conceded 2. Barça, before drawing at the San Siro against Milan, had a four-match winning streak in the Champions League away from the Camp Nou.

David Luiz out of both legs with hamstring injury -
Luiz has a hamstring injury, which forced him off in Sunday's FA Cup thrashing of Tottenham. "It's a big loss for us," said manager Roberto Di Matteo. "He's a fantastic centre-half who was in good form. "We hope to get him back in two weeks, maybe, and hopefully he will be ready for the end of the season."

Where are they now? Tom Henning Ovrebo - Yahoo! Eurosport
Unlike Frisk, though, Ovrebo - who is no stranger to controversy, having been dropped before by both UEFA and FIFA following blunders at international tournaments - chose to solider on, refereeing in Norway’s professional league while working as a psychologist, although he quit international matches after being snubbed for the 2010 World Cup.

Bayern Munich 2-1 Real Madrid: what type of player to use as the number ten? | Zonal Marking
Mario Gomez scored very late to give Bayern a slender advantage going into the second leg. Bayern were the better side over the course of the game here – Real started poorly, got better in the second half, and then conceded a late winner when the game seemed to have died.

Mourinho: First goal offside - Yahoo! Eurosport
"I don't criticise the referee, I accept his decisions," said Mourinho, who has a reputation for doing exactly the opposite. "They scored a goal which should have been disallowed but that doesn't give me any reason to criticise. "A draw would have been a fairer result. This is football, whoever scores wins and the game ends when it ends, nothing else."

Jury still out on Mourinho's Madrid: Real yet to prove their credentials against Europe's elite after Bayern defeat -
Munich proved a difficult destination for Real once more on Tuesday, although this time the Spanish side will be eager to return to Bavaria in a month for the competition's grand finale. Should they do so, however, they must perform dramatically better than what they managed last night.

Betis suffer Juanma blow - Yahoo! Eurosport
Real Betis midfielder Juanma has been ruled out for at least four weeks with a hamstring tear, effectively ending his season. The 30-year-old suffered a "grade I-II tear in the distal portion of the top of his right femoral bicep", the Sevilla-based club said. The injury makes the former Levante player a major doubt for the rest of manager Pepe Mel's season, which ends in just under one month.

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