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FC Barcelona News: 9 April 2013; Gerard Pique On Verge of Milestone, Thiago Motta Given Green Light by PSG Doctors

Manuel Queimadelos Alonso

PSG and Zaragoza mark the agenda this week | FC Barcelona
Barça are again in Champions League action this week, with the big game on Wednesday against PSG, whilst the second half of the week will see the focus shift to the league game against Zaragoza on Sunday.

Piqué will play his 50th match as a FC Barcelona player in the Champions League | FC Barcelona
Gerard Piqué will play his 50th match in the Champions League this Wednesday when FC Barcelona host Paris Saint-Germain for the return leg of the quarter-finals. The centre back, who has featured in the team’s last five starting line-ups, will most likely start against the Parisians.

FC Barcelona-Paris Saint-Germain: Did you know... | FC Barcelona
FC Barcelona’s rival on Wednesday, Paris Saint-Germain, was founded in 1970. Perhaps due to the French team’s relatively short history, there’s only been one official match between them and the Blaugrana in the quarter-finals of the Champions League not counting the match that took place last week. It took place in the 1994/95 season and the result was a one-all draw.

Barça have shown they can overcome injuries for big Champions League games | FC Barcelona
With Puyol and Mascherano definitely out of Wednesday’s quarter final second leg game against PSG and with Messi, Pedro and Adriano all doubtful, Barça are in many ways on familiar territory – having overcome similar injury crises on a number of occasions in recent years – most notably the 2008/09 semi-final at Stamford Bridge, when Henry, Milito, Márquez, and Puyol were all ruled out.

Another hat-trick, three and a half years later | FC Barcelona
Saturday night’s game was Cesc Fàbregas’ best for Barçain goal scoring terms and the first time he’d ever bagged a hat trick and he was proud to pick up the ball after the game, with three goals and three points for the team – this was a great confidence booster ahead of Wednesday night’s clash with PSG.

Pinto comes through test with flying colours | FC Barcelona
José Manuel Pinto met the challenge of stepping in for Victor Valdes and carried it off with flying colours. Since Barça’s number one keeper was handed down a four-game suspension for the incidents at the Santiago Bernabéu, Pinto has helped Barça take ten of the 12 points on offer and concede just three goals, exhibiting great security and confidence in thwarting out the opponents attackers.

Guillem Balague on how Vilanova and Mourinho lead Barca and Real | Guillem Balague | Sky Sports
The return to Barcelona of Eric Abidal after 402 days is amazing, as for someone to have a transplant like he has had and return to play at the top level is medically unheard of. So we will see whether he can play well consistently, but doctors will monitor his situation to see what science can learn from it.

Motta available for PSG | Football Espana
Thiago Motta has been passed fit for inclusion in Paris Saint-Germain’s squad to face Barcelona this Wednesday. Carlo Ancelotti has named a full-strength 23-man squad for the trip out to the Camp Nou for the Champions League quarter-final second leg this week.

Thiago Silva open to Barca switch - Soccerway
Paris Saint-Germain defender Thiago Silva says he would be open to a move to Barcelona if the Liga giants came knocking again. Barca reportedly showed an interest in signing the Brazil international last year, but he eventually left AC Milan for PSG instead.

Spain line up Ireland friendly | Football Espana
Ahead of their participation in the 2013 Confederations Cup, La Roja have been confirmed by the FAI as having agreed to play the Irish on June 11. To be played at the Yankee Stadium at 8pm local time, the game will be the first meeting between the two teams since last summer’s Euro 2012 group stage encounter, which finished 4-0 to Spain.

Pepe set to miss Galatasaray clash -
Pepe has been ruled out of Real Madrid's Champions League quarter-final second leg with Galatasaray through injury, according to various reports the Spanish media. The Portuguese pulled up during a training session with a suspected muscle problem and has handed Jose Mourinho an unwelcome selection headache ahead of the Istanbul clash.

Varane to sign with Mendes? | Football Espana
El Pais have it that Real Madrid centre-back Raphael Varane is in talks to sign with Portuguese agent Jorge Mendes. Mendes is one of the game’s most prominent agents and at Madrid alone currently represents Coach Jose Mourinho, as well as players Cristiano Ronaldo, Fabio Coentrao, Angel Di Maria, Ricardo Carvalho and Pepe.

Negredo double keeps Sevilla dreaming of Europe - Yahoo! Eurosport UK
The Spain striker netted in the fourth and 87th minutes to take his tally for the season to 17 in an entertaining clash where both sides finished with 10 men. Sevilla are 10th with 41 points and eight games left to play, six short of Malaga in sixth place and the last Europa League qualification berth.

Malaga broke the rules and must not be allowed back in the Champions League -
The European governing body announced earlier this season that Manuel Pellegrini’s side will face a one-season ban from its competitions over the next four years, leaving one of this term’s revelations to contemplate this being their one and only campaign in the Champions League before being left to scramble for a way to pay their overheads without the bonus that continental football at the top table brings.

Valladolid ask for Valencia replay | Football Espana
eal Valladolid are reportedly going to ask the Spanish Football Federation to replay the final few moments of their game with Valencia. Controversy surrounds the closing stages of the weekend fixture, when a throw-in awarded to Valladolid was taken by Valencia, ahead of a move that then led to Jonas’ match-winning header in stoppage time.

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