FC Barcelona has expressed its solidarity and sympathy for the victims of the attacks in the city of Paris on Friday night. The Club, its president Josep Maria Bartomeu, and several members of the professional teams have published messages of support on social networks. This Saturday, flags shall be flying half-mast and there shall be a minute’s silence before all events on the Club premises.
Argentina and Brazil drew 1-1 in Friday night’s 2018 World Cup qualifier, which kicked off 24 hours later than scheduled after originally being suspended due to a waterlogged pitch. Javier Mascherano played all ninety minutes in the centre of Tata Martino’s midfield, while Barça's Brazilian duo of Neymar Jr and Dani Alves also played the full match at the Monumental in Buenos Aires.
At the moment, good news is seemingly never-ending for the Blaugrana: the team is beginning to hit its stride, big players are in the best form of their career and the biggest of them all, Lionel Messi, has just returned to training. When contrasted with Real Madrid's poor form and constant trips to the physio room, it is easy to get carried away, but would it perhaps be wise for supporters of the league champions to temper their expectations in the build-up to the Bernabeu?
Lionel Messi continued his recovery plan on Friday as he aims to get fit for the Clasico on November 21. As explained earlier, the Argentine star arrived at training despite Luis Enrique gifting the squad Friday, Saturday and Sunday off. We don't know what Messi will do on the weekend days, but on Friday he decided instead of training alone he would work with Barcelona B.
Friday was a very productive evening indeed for Barça’s European players that were involved in international friendlies. Spain, Turkey and Belgium all collected wins against England, Qatar and Italy respectively. Vicente del Bosque started all of Gerard Piqué, Marc Bartra, Jordi Alba, Sergio Busquets and Andrés Iniesta in Spain’s friendly against fellow Euro 2016 finalists England at the José Rico Pérez in Alicante.
There is no Liga action for the first team this weekend because of the international break, but there is plenty else going on at the club, and a lot of it is happening in the Palau Blaugrana. Here’s a round-up of the highlights on Saturday and Sunday (all times CET).