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FC Barcelona News: 24 December 2014; Nine Called up for Catalan National Team, Barca to Host Open Training

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Nine from FC Barcelona picked for Catalonia | FC Barcelona
The manager of the Catalan national team, Gerard López, named his team on Tuesday for the friendly match with the Basque Country on Sunday December 28 at the new San Mamés (Bilbao). Nine of the squad are from FC Barcelona, namely Martín Montoya, Gerard Piqué, Sergio Busquets, Xavi Hernández, Marc Bartra, Jordi Alba, Sergi Roberto, Jordi Masip of the first team and Sergi Samper of the reserves.

Monday the 5th of January, FC Barcelona open training session at the Minestadi | FC Barcelona
The FC Barcelona first team will carry out their traditional open training session on Monday the 5th of January at 11:00AM CET a the Miniestadi. The doors to the stadium will be opened at 9:30AM and as is custom Barça members can obtain free tickets (a maximum of 3 per member), whilst the price for the general public will 5 Euros per ticket. In both cases, members and non-members, will not be allowed into the Miniestadi without a valid ticket.

FC Barcelona 2014 statistics by competitions | FC Barcelona
In the year about to end, FC Barcelona played 56 official matches, in La Liga, the Champions League and the Spanish Cup. Here is a summary of how they did in each of the three major competitions.

Making a list of potential Christmas presents for Barcelona players and staff - ESPN FC
Barcelona ended 2014 with a powerful performance against Cordoba on Saturday and a 5-0 win, but fans will be wondering whether they have the quality to overcome a strong Real Madrid at the top of La Liga and really be a contender to win a first Champions League in four years.

Barcelona's Xavi Hernandez - Bags were packed for New York move - ESPN FC
"The season was over and I was disappointed to be on the bench for the game against Atletico Madrid and, with a new coach incoming with his own ideas and players, I felt that my time at the club was up," Xavi said in quotes translated by AS.

Barcelona want Neymar extension - agent - Goal.com
Reports earlier this week suggested the Catalan club were seeking talks with the Neymar camp in a bid to extend his deal at Camp Nou to 2020. And the player’s representative Wagner Ribeiro has backed that up, telling reporters in Brazil: "Of course Barcelona want to renew his contract. Until 2020? Yes."

Messi and Neymar photo session for the 'REVISTA BARÇA' | FC Barcelona
Leo Messi and Neymar, along with a group of youngsters, were the main starts of a photo session for the latest edition of the REVISTA BARÇA. The magazine focuses on the work of the FC Barcelona Foundation which includes partnerships with both the Leo Messi Foundation and the Instituto Projeto Neymar Jr.

Neymar opens the facilities at his social centre in Brazil | FC Barcelona
The inauguration was very much a public event with more than 100 accredited journalists in attendance along with Roberto Mourão, the mayor of Praia Grande. FC Barcelona’s representative was club director and Vice President of the FC Barcelona Foundation, Ramon Cierco.

Jose Mourinho - Chelsea couldn't afford Barcelona star Lionel Messi - ESPN FC
"Because there is at this moment the financial fair play and with the financial fair play we have to follow certain rules, certain numbers, and we obviously have no conditions to buy, as you were saying, a 'super amazing player' obviously paid with super amazing numbers that Chelsea in this moment we cannot do."

Suarez sends kids Xmas parcels | Football Espana
Barcelona striker Luis Suarez has sent 500 Christmas parcels to children and their families back in his native Uruguay. A report in the Telegraph says the former Ajax and Liverpool man showed his generous side by sending the festive gifts to the Pereira Rosell hospital in the capital Montevideo, whilst also including a message on the packages.

Five excellent goals from the youth teams to end the year | FC Barcelona
The FC Barcelona youth team players end the year in style with nine victories and some great goals. Barça TV programme ‘Next Generation’ have selected the five best strikes for us here at fcbarcelona.com. Number five is from the U8 striker Marc Bernal who beats the keeper perfectly when clean through. Goal number 4 is from U10 D player Ahmed Utassy – he picks up a loose ball to fire home from inside the box.

'There is no controversy between Cristiano Ronaldo and Michel Platini' - Pedro Pinto - Goal.com
There is no animosity between Cristiano Ronaldo and UEFA president Michel Platini, according to the organization's spokesman Pedro Pinto. Real Madrid was angered in October when Platini went public with his views on this year's Ballon d'Or race, claiming that a World Cup-winning German deserved to take home 2014's prize more than holder Ronaldo or four-time winner Lionel Messi.

Valencia chase Everton striker | Football Espana
Valencia are ready to make a move for Everton striker Samuel Eto’o in the January transfer window, according to Mundo Deportivo,. The Cameroon international only joined the Toffees last summer from Chelsea and his current contract expires in June 2016, although reports in England claim that the 33-year-old was due to be offered a two-year extension at Goodison Park.

Athletic Bilbao extend Mikel Rico's contract to 2018 - ESPN FC
Athletic Bilbao say versatile midfielder Mikel Rico has agreed to sign a new contract that will keep him at the Basque club until June 2018. Athletic say the new deal includes a buyout clause of 35 million euros.