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FC Barcelona News: 26 August 2014; Barca Enter Week 2 As La Liga Leaders, Raul Sanllehí Travels to Brazil

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Chris Brunskill

Barça sets off as leader yet again | FC Barcelona
At the end of the opening round of the new La Liga season, FC Barcelona has shot straight to the top of the table for the third season on the bounce. Superior goal difference gives Barça the edge over Celta, who sit in second place after their 3-1 victory over Getafe.

Graham Hunter on the emergence of Barcelona's Munir El Haddadi - ESPN FC
When Luis Enrique said after the Elche win: 'this kid is burning through the youth team levels at an unstoppable speed,' it was this he was referring to. The last home-developed kid to zip through three levels -- Juvenil, Barca B and then the first team -- well within one calendar year, was Messi.

Inside view of FC Barcelona's Liga debut | FC Barcelona
Barça got the league off to the perfect start with a 3-0 win over Elche with goals from. Messi (2) and Munir. This seven minute video offers exclusive close-up pictures of the day, including the arrival of the players at the Camp Nou, the warm-up, the atmosphere in the terraces and the post-match interviews in the Mixed Zone.

Luis Enrique to attend UEFA Coaches Forum on September 3 and 4 | FC Barcelona
Luis Enrique will be one of the guests at the 16th UEFA Elite Club Coaches Forum in Nyon on September 3 and 4. This will be the first time that he has attended the event that is traditionally held just before the start of the Champions League. The last time FC Barcelona was represented was by Tito Vilanova in 2012.

The Board and coaching staff meet over lunch at the Ciutat Esportiva | FC Barcelona
Following the first game of the season, the Board of Directors, headed by President Josep Maria Bartomeu, met over lunch with Luis Enrique and his coaching staff on Monday at the Joan Gamper training ground, with Sports Director Andoni Zubizarreta also present.

Board reviews sporting progress | FC Barcelona
The Board of FC Barcelona met at the Ciutat Esportiva Joan Gamper on Monday afternoon to assess the progress made in the first team and Barça B last season, as well as the transfer activity in and out of the Club. But of course, FC Barcelona isn’t just a football club so the directors also reviewed the work of the basketball, handball and Futsal teams.

Barca directors in Brazil for Douglas | Football Espana
Three Barcelona representatives have arrived in Brazil to complete the signing of Douglas. Barca's general director Antoni Rossich, director of football Raul Sanllehí and Brazilian representative André Cury landed overnight to complete the deal. The 24-year-old is set to sign a contract with the Camp Nout outfit that will keep him with the club until 2019.

Five things we learned in La Liga - ESPN FC
Javier Mascherano did not have a good season last year at centre-back for Barcelona, as he himself admitted regularly towards the end of the campaign. Javier Mascherano was then outstanding at the World Cup for Argentina, dominating games from the centre of the midfield, astutely protecting his defence while also regularly playing incisive forward balls.

Manchester United agrees Di Maria deal with Real Madrid - Goal.com
With talks between the two sides having accelerated in the last 24 hours, Di Maria has now arrived in Manchester and is expected to agree personal terms and complete a medical on Tuesday. Goal understands that Louis van Gaal's side will offer Di Maria a wage packet that will eclipse Wayne Rooney's €360,000-per-week deal, including the Argentine's €6m signing-on fee and additional bonuses.

Match report from Real Madrid's 2-0 victory over Cordoba | Sky Sports Football
Real Madrid's quest to reclaim the La Liga title began with an unconvincing 2-0 victory over promoted Cordoba. It took Karim Benzema 30 minutes to find a way past the second division play-off winners with a powerful header and Real toiled in vain for the best part of an hour with the second goal proving to be frustratingly elusive.

Match report from the 0-0 draw between Rayo Vallecano and Atletico Madrid | Sky Sports Football
Atletico assistant coach German Burgos took charge in Simeone's absence, following the head coach's actions during Friday's Supercopa second leg against Real Madrid where he was sent off during the first half after aggressively demonstrating against a refereeing decision and then tapping the fourth official on the back of the head.

Atletico Madrid coach Diego Simeone receives eight-match suspension | Sky Sports
Simeone was sent to the stands during the first half of the clash at the Vicente Calderon after aggressively remonstrating with the fourth official, who he then tapped on the back of the head. The Argentinian's ban has been made up of four different punishments and includes a combined fine of 4,805 euros (£3,800). Atletico have also been fined 2,800 euros (£2,230).

Diego Simeone remained silent over his ban after Atletico Madrid draw | Sky Sports
Asked about the punishment following Atletico's goalless draw at Rayo Vallecano on Monday night, Simeone said: "I'm not going to make any assessment, I have a lot of respect for those who make the decisions, and silence." Simeone watched on from the stands as Atletico were held by local rivals Rayo in the opening match of their Primera Division title defence.

Eibar’s lumberjacks fell their rivals in perfect introduction to La Liga | Football | theguardian.com
Only Ángel had ever played in the top flight before. No town this small has ever been there. No team this small has either. Last season, Eibar’s budget was just €3.2m; this year, their entire budget couldn’t cover Cristiano Ronaldo’s or Leo Messi’s wages. They have been built on loan deals, players coming and going every year. Traditionally, Eibar was seen as a place where young players toughened up: David Silva had played here, Xabi Alonso too.