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FC Barcelona News: 23 August 2018; Preparations Continue for Valladolid Match, Jasper Cillessen Injured

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FC Barcelona v Paris Saint-Germain - UEFA Champions League Round of 16: Second Leg Photo by Michael Regan/Getty Images

La Liga players angered by ‘disrespectful’ agreement | Sky Sports
The Spanish players’ union (AFE) held a meeting on Wednesday with a host of top players, including Real Madrid captain Sergio Ramos and Barcelona’s Sergio Busquets. The AFE says the players were unanimously against the proposal.

Real Madrid-Barcelona Clasico in New York ‘not viable’ - La Liga president | ESPN
La Liga president Javier Tebas has defended plans to stage a regular-season game in the United States starting this season but insists the Clasico between Real Madrid and Barcelona will not be the one selected. Tebas signed a 15-year agreement with Relevent, the organisers of the International Champions Cup, to promote the sport in North America and expand La Liga’s brand.

Preparing for the match against Valladolid | FC Barcelona
FC Barcelona’s first-team continue preparing for their first away match of the 2018/19 League campaign against Valladolid. On Thursday, Ernesto Valverde and his squad trained on pitch seven at the Ciutat Esportiva Joan Gamper, and were joined by Jokin Ezkieta, from Barça B.

Cillessen suffers intercostal muscle sprain | FC Barcelona
The Dutch shotstopper suffered the injury in this morning’s training session. Although he did not feature in the LaLiga opener against Alavés, Cillessen was one of the most frequently used players on the club’s U.S. Tour and played 45 minutes against Boca Juniors in the Joan Gamper Trophy game.

Exclusive interview: Ernesto Valverde looks ahead at the new season | FC Barcelona
Ernesto Valverde has given an exclusive interview to BARÇA MAGAZINE as he goes into his second season in charge of the FC Barcelona first team. He not only discusses his own players and his plans for the new campaign, but also fields questions on the World Cup in Russia, the introduction of VAR and Cristiano Ronaldo’s departure for Italy.

10 years since Messi’s Olympic gold | FC Barcelona
Barça’s new captain was a key player in Argentina’s victory in the 2008 Olympic Games held in Beijing. During the tournament, Leo Messi scored two goals; one against the Ivory Coast in the group stage and another against Holland in the quarter-finals, whilst Ángel Di Maria scored the winner in the final. Wearing the No.15, since the No.10 was Riquelme’s, Messi was the star of an Argentina side that retained the title after the 2004 squad had been successful in Athens.

PSG are willing to pay 90 million for Ivan Rakitic | Sport
PSG have been circling the market in the last two weeks but they’ve finally asked Barça to begin negotiations over a transfer for Ivan Rakitic. The French champions are ready to present an offer close to €90m - his buyout clause is €120m - and want to speak with the player to see if they can reach an agreement with him.

‘A great signing’ or ‘a huge mistake’ - Rebellious Rabiot the right kind of character for Barcelona? | Goal
His fiery attitude has been called into question on many occasions before, with his decision to remove himself from France’s reserve list prior to the 2018 World Cup having caused huge controversy. Labelled petulant, immature and ungrateful by a stunned press, the 23-year-old then continued to hit out at coach Didier Deschamps for omitting him from the full squad.

Boca reject Barca’s Belardi bid | Football Espana
Barcelona have seen a €4m offer for defender Leo Belardi Rossa rejected by Boca Juniors, according to reports in Spain. The 19-year-old has not yet made a senior appearance for the Argentine giants but is said to be among his nation’s most promising young talents.