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FC Barcelona News: 8 May 2014; Barça Back in Control of Their Own La Liga Destiny, Dani Alves, Neymar Make World Cup Squad

Gonzalo Arroyo Moreno

FC Barcelona's title hopes revived | FC Barcelona
La Liga, just like life itself, presents us with a multitude of situations. When it looked as though the title was impossible for Barça after this weekend’s draw with Getafe, the Blaugrana were given a new chance to defend the title they won under the tutelage of Tito Vilanova.

FC Barcelona prepare for league finale | FC Barcelona
Barça will be at the Martínez Valero, home of Elche, on Sunday evening at 7.00 PM CET. Three days before that crunch encounter, and boosted by the amazing news that the title hopes have been revived by Real Madrid’s draw in Valladolid, Gerardo ‘Tata’ Martino and his players trained this morning. Xavi Hernández, who joined in with part of Wednesday’s session, worked out in isolation.

Dani Alves and Neymar Jr, in the Brazil squad for the World Cup | FC Barcelona
Dani Alves and Neymar Jr. are the first FC Barcelona players to be officially called up for the World Cup in Brazil. The Barça full back and Barça forward are both in the list of 23 players announced by Brazil National Coach, Luiz Felipe Scolari, this Wednesday. Also called up are former Barça players Henrique and Maxwell.

First team barbeque at the Ciutat Esportiva | FC Barcelona
This Wednesday, after finishing the morning training session at the Ciutat Esportiva, the Barça first team squad held a team lunch at the New Masia. The first team players and coaches enjoyed a barbeque, based around Argentinian beef, in the open air, taking advantage of the sunny day in Sant Joan Despi.

De La Pena: Enrique ideal for Barca | Football Espana
"I haven’t spoken to him and the club hasn’t yet announced who will be the Coach next season, but if it’s Enrique, I can only say that the signing is a total success," De La Pena proclaimed. "No doubt. The results are what make good or bad Coaches but personally, I see Luis Enrique as the ideal Coach for Barca. He’s the best of all possible candidates.

Barcelona star Lionel Messi has not requested Sergio Aguero signing, father says - ESPN FC
Messi Sr. strongly denied the reports, telling ARA the meeting was with the club's financial vice-president, Javier Faus, and director general, Antoni Rosich, who are concerned only with finance and have no responsibility for transfer policy. He stressed that contractual matters, clauses and figures were the only topics of conversation.

Rafinha, Bojan and Deulofeu all get the job done | FC Barcelona
The three Barça players currently out on loan, Rafinha Alcántara (Celta), Bojan Krkic (Ajax) and Gerard Deulofeu (Everton), all have reason to be cheerful as their seasons draw to a close. All are playing regularly for their clubs, and have been getting goals that have helped their teams to achieve their objectives. Rafinha’s Celta have managed to stay clear of relegation, Bojan’s Ajax retained the Dutch league title, and Deulofeu’s Everton made it into the Europa League.

Villarreal hit with fine after banana thrown at Dani Alves | Sky Sports
A 26-year-old fan, David Campayo Lleo, was later arrested by police and Alves has received support from a number of high profile players on social media.Spanish football authorities were considering a partial closure of the stadium, but instead opted for a fine after Lleo was given a life ban by the club.

Former Barcelona defender Lilian Thuram says Villarreal fine for Dani Alves banana incident is a joke - ESPN FC
"In America, they take this seriously -- Donald Sterling was thrown out of the NBA. The referees must stop the game and the federation close the ground. The Spanish competition committee does not understand racism -- it is an act of violence against a player and against the people watching the game."

Camaigners condemn Spanish FA for Villareal fine | Football News | Sky Sports
Lord Herman Ouseley, chair of Kick It Out, said: "The Spanish FA has been incredibly weak and lily-livered on tackling racism and we're seeing these types of incidents repeating themselves because they've done nothing sufficiently effective to address the problem.

Real Madrid held by struggling Valladolid as title hopes shatter | Sky Sports Football
Sergio Ramos lifted Los Blancos fans, who watched Cristiano Ronaldo go off injured early on, by hitting a superb free-kick to give the visitors the lead after they had to weather a storm from the hosts. But just as they looked to have tied up the points, Osorio headed home in the closing stages to give his side a lifeline and leave Madrid almost needing a miracle to win the title.

Did Ronaldo and Real sacrifice La Liga to protect their ‘Decima’ dream? | Eurosport
If taking him off was a precautionary measure it just goes to show how obsessed Real Madrid have become with lifting their 10th Champions League crown.'La Decima' has been a dream for all at Real Madrid ever since they lifted the famous European Cup for the ninth time when they beat Bayer Leverkusen 2-1 in Hampden Park in Glasgow back in 2002 when Zinedine Zidane won the trophy with one of the greatest goals ever scored.

Ancelotti: Ronaldo injury 'not serious' -
The Portugal international lasted just nine minutes of the game at the Jose Zorrilla, sparking fears that he had suffered a recurrence of his recent hamstring problem. However, Ancelotti has soothed initial concerns that Ronaldo could end up missing the conclusion of the Liga season and the Champions League final against Atletico Madrid on May 24.

UEFA reject Real Madrid's Xabi Alonso appeal -
"Following the protest lodged by Real Madrid CF against the caution of thier player Xabi Alonso at the return-leg of the UEFA Champions League semifinal against FC Bayern Munchen played on 29 April in Germany, the UEFA Control and Disciplinary Body has declared the protest inadmissible," the governing body stated.

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