Facts and Figures from Saturday night’s defeat to Granada

Montoya had his first start in 11 games/ PHOTO: MIGUEL RUIZ-FCB
Despite their 24 shots on goal and 10 corners, Barça failed to score at the Nuevo Los Cármenes

FC Barcelona suffered their fifth league defeat of the season in Granada on Saturday – here are some facts and figures form that game:

  • Gerardo Martino’s side had 29 shots – 9 on target, 10 missing the target and 10 of which were blocked. Granada had just 5 shots – but got the only goal of the game.
  • Barça had 13 corners, whilst Granada only had one.
  • Song (109), Iniesta (105) and Cesc (104) were the players who were involved in most action for the team.
  • Martín Montoya won most possession for the team -12.
  • It’s been 11 games since Montoya last played: he figured in the 3-1 defeat at Anoeta.
  • Barça set a record for possession in recent years, with an astonishing 86%.
  • The game was the fifth time that Busquets and Song  played in the same side, but the first that either of them had played at centre half this season.
  • Barça hadn’t gone two consecutive games without scoring since 2008, when they lost 1-0 to Numancia and Wisla Cracovia.
  • Sergio Busquets will miss next Sunday’s game against Bilbao at the Camp Nou after he picked up his fifth yellow card of the season.
  • Leo Messi was also booked: his first of the league season. He’s only picked up one other yellow this year, in the Cup against Real Sociedad.

Weekend round up of FC Barcelona’s professional teams

Barça’s futsal team leave it late against Ríos Renovables, but secure the win in the second half

Xavi Pascual’s men get a vital victory ahead of next week’s Euroleague match

The hockey team cruise in the European League and clinch a spot in the final four


Barça won 0-3 away to Tudela in the penultimate match of the regular season. The Blaugrana put in a good first half, but they were unable to net the chances they created. At the start of the second, Fernandao and then Ortego gave Barça Alusport a two-goal lead, and in the dying minutes, Wilde made it 0-3.


Barça defeated Río Naturaleza Monbus by 77 to 62 in a match that was decided in the first quarter. Pascual’s men, who were on target and serious, secured their 20th league win of the regular season. This victory, which is very important after three consecutive defeats, gives the team a morale boost ahead of next week’s Euroleague quarter-final.

Roller Hockey

FC Barcelona’s roller hockey team are once again in contention to win the European crown. Barça reached the final four of the European League after eliminating Valongo in quarterfinal by 10 to 3. The Blaugrana, who defeated their rival in Portugal by 2 to 3, clinched a spot in the next round in the game played this afternoon at the Palau Blaugrana. The victory was secured thanks to goals from Gual, Reinaldo, Pablo Álvarez (2), Torra, Matías Pascual and Raül Marín.

Mascherano: “The didn’t want to go in”

The center back lamented his team’s lack of accuracy in front of goal and he urged his teammates to rally for the Copa del Rey final

The Argentinian center back, Javier Mascherano, talked to the press after the game against Granada and he rued his team’s missed chances: “The ball didn’t want to go in, but we can’t make excuses. I think we created chances to score, but football can be like this.” Mascherano went on to acknowledge that Barça’s title hopes were dented by not winning the three points this evening: “The league is no longer in our hands. I don’t think the defeat in the Champions League affected us, we created a lot of chances.”

Barça will face Real Madrid in the final of the Copa del Rey on Wednesday, and Mascherano is hoping the team will bounce back for the title match: “I think we deserve to have a great game on Wednesday. We have to pick ourselves up and look forward, because on Wednesday we have a final and we cannot fail.”


“It’s a step backward. We made a mistake in the play that led to their goal and that really hurt us.”

“Sometimes it’s hard to find an explanation, we did everything we could to score.”

“It hurts to take this backward step at this point in the league, when there’s so little left for the year to be over.”


“Mentally we’re pretty screwed up, we could have won but we couldn’t capitalise on our chances.”

“We gave it our all but in the end it wasn’t possible.”

“We will fight for the league until the end, we still have games left and hopefully our rivals lose points.”

“I ask the fans to support us on Wednesday, we want to dedicate a victory to them.”

“It’s been a while since I’ve played, I wanted to show that I can play in this team.”


Martino laments lack of accuracy after defeat in Granada

“This is a match that we should have won. The rotations have nothing to do with the result,” said the manager

“We shouldn’t confuse sadness after a defeat with us giving up on the title race”

In the post match press conference after the game against Granada, Gerardo Martino said that “we no longer depend on ourselves to win the league title” and that the team “did everything possible” to fight back. In addition, the Argentinian manager was clear that “I don’t have any complaints for how my players played” and that “this is a game that we should have won.”

“We didn’t score the goals we needed to win, we lacked accuracy. In a normal game we would have won by three or four goals,” said the manager, who was clear that his men will not give up in pursuit of the league title: “We shouldn’t confuse sadness after a defeat with giving up on a competition.”

The final

Barça’s next match will be the final of the Copa del Rey, in Valencia, against Real Madrid. “After the two defeats the players feel as though something important has been lost, but the game on Wednesday is a final and we have to win it,” said Martino.



MATCH REPORT – FC Barcelona suffered their fifth defeat of the season away to Granada (1-0)

It was a frustrating night for FC Barcelona / PHOTO: MIGUEL RUIZ-FCB
FC Barcelona suffered their fifth defeat of the season away to Granada

FC Barcelona have lost by the only goal of the match in Granada. It was one of those games in which the ball just simply didn’t want to go in. The visitors shot no fewer than 29 times, but not one of those was enough to neutralise Brahimi’s opener. This was a very different game to the ones in San Sebastian and Valladolid. At the Nuevo Los Cármenes, Barça created threat after threat, but couldn’t secure the three points, or even just one, and now find that their destiny in La Liga is once again out of their hands.

Brahimi opener

Barça started with a very different eleven to the one that lost at the Calderón on Wednesday night, with Montoya and Adriano at full back and Busquets covering for the injured Piqué, Puyol and Bartra at centre back. Perhaps it was the unfamiliar defensive line-up that caught the visitors off their guard and allowed Brahimi to break into space to latch onto a through ball and slip the ball past Pinto. In their first attack of the game, Granada found themselves 1-0 up.

Barça reacted immediately. Montoya was exceptional down the right and came close with a couple of chances. Messi and Neymar, the latter with his head, also missed by the tiniest of margins. Despite their uncertainty at the back, Barça didn’t deserve to be trailing at half-time. They had played practically all the football, but had nothing to show for all that hard work.

Goalless second half

Barça were again the better team after the break. Cesc, Neymar, Iniesta and Messi all had golden chances to level affairs, but their shots either went wide by mere centimetres, or were intercepted by an inspired Karnezis in the Granada goal.

Incredibly, Barça totalled a massive 29 shots on goal against a Granada side that did little more than sit back and defend their early lead. But absolutely nothing was going Barça’s way. The ninety minutes ended in a painful defeat, and with Real and Atlético Madrid yet to play this weekend, the Catalans’ Liga challenge now depends on those two teams dropping points in the few games left of the competition

VÍDEO – Everything is ready at the Nuevo Los Cármenes ready for FC Barcelona’s visit this evening

Iniesta's shirt is already in its place
In Granada, the changing roooms are already laid out to welcome the defending champions

Los Cármenes in Granada is the venue for tonight’s crunch Liga fixture, and the eighteen FC Barcelona shirts are already in place. The game gets under way at 8.00 PM CET, with the home side battling against relegation and the visitors still in contention for the championship crown.

FC Barcelona have arrived in Granada, the Andalusian city where they´ll be playing this evening

Messi and Mascherano were among the players on the flight / PHOTO: ARXIU FCB
The first team’s plane touched down at 11.25 AM CET in the city where they’ll be playing tonight’s crucial leeague fixture

The FC Barcelona players arrived in Granada this morning at 11.25 AM CET, ready for this evening’s fixture against the local club (8.00 AM CET). The travelling party is being led by directors Jordi Moix, Susana Monje, Javier Bordas and Ramon Pont, as well as Director of Professional Football Andoni Zubizarreta.

Once in the Andalusian city, the FC Barcelona first team will be resting at Hotel Abades Nevada Palace until shortly before kick-off at Los Cármenes.

The squad will be returning directly to Barcelona once the game is over.

MATCH PREVIEW- FC Barcelona go to Granada (8.00 PM CET) where they’ll need to put their European woes behind them

 Barça won 4-0 against Granada at the Camp Nou earlier this season / PHOTO: MIGUEL RUIZ-FCB
A crucial league fixture sandwiched between European elimination and the Spanish Cup Final on Wednesday

Just six games stand between FC Barcelona and their fifth league title in six seasons. The first of those is this evening in Granada (8.00 PM CET) and comes in the shadow of the disappointment of Champions League defeat to Atlético Madrid, and with the potential distraction of the cup final against Real Madrid in just four days’ time. But this game at Los Cármenes is also of vital consequence, for anything but three points will put Barça’s league title bid in serious jeopardy.

So these are hardly ideal circumstances, and the team suffered another blow on Friday when Marc Bartra pulled his right hamstring in training. Although the injury is not likely to be too serious, it’s enough to keep him out of the travelling party, which means the Catalans will be facing Granada with a worrying lack of defensive resources.

With two other regular centre backs, Puyol and Piqué, also out through injury, Gerardo Martino only has one natural player for that position. Mascherano will probably be teaming up with one of Adriano, Song or Busquets, all of whom have some experience of covering in that position in the past.

Granada, meanwhile, are a team in dire need of points. They are three clear of the drop zone at the moment, but manager Lucas Alcaraz is preparing himself for a nervy run-in to the end of the season. For this match, he regains both Recio and Ighalo, but loses the suspended left back Brayan Angulo and injured striker Riki.

Still unbeaten, @FCBHandbol have won the Asobal League with five games to spare

Unbeaten FC Barcelona have won their fourth league in a row / PHOTO: FCB ARCHIVE
Xavi Pascual’s side have beaten BM Aragón to win the Spanish league title with five games in hand

Arpad Sterbik was the star this evening on the night of his return from a two-month meniscus injury

There were 3,044 spectators in the Palau Blaugrana this evening to watch as Barça clinched the Asobal title with a 48-22 win against an Aragón side that put up a decent fight for the first ten minutes, but from then on was simply steamrolled off the court by the all-conquering Blaugrana. It was a doubly special night for goalkeeper Arpad Sterbik, who was back in action for the first time since breaking a meniscus in his right knee against Paris Saint Germanin two months ago.

The 2013/14 Liga Asobal title is Barça’s fourth in a row, and also the fourth consecutive title for coach Xavi Pascual, and means the team is now just one championship short of equalling the famous five-in-a-row of the legendary Dream Team of the nineties.

Giants of history

And the club’s 21st Spanish league championship extends their runaway lead as the club with the most national crowns to its name. Barça are now eleven titles clear of the next club in the all-time ranking, fellow Catalans BM Granollers who have ten, followed by Atlético Madrid with nine and Ciudad Real with five.

But this season’s championship has been the most spectacular of them all. Barça shared the lead with Granollers until the sixth game, but a comfortable 20-34 win in the derby made them outright leaders for the first time, and they haven’t needed to look back since. Amazingly, they have gone on to win every game so far this season, and have mathematically clinched the trophy with five games to spare. Ciudad Real, in 2009/10, is the only club to have gone a whole Asobal season without losing a game, but Barça are well set to equalise that record this season..

Seven out of seven?

FC Barcelona are also through to the quarter finals of the European Champions League and the Final Four of the Spanish Copa del Rey, and with the Catalan Supercup still to come, they are still on course for repeating the amazing seven-out-of-seven major titles conquered in the 1999/2000 season.

MATCH REPORT: The U19 team have beaten Schalke 1-0 to reach the UEFA Youth League Final

Munir grabbed the winner at the Colovray Stadium, Nyon / PHOTO: UEFA
FC Barcelona have beaten Schalke 04 in the semi-finals of the UEFA Youth League and will face Benfica for the championship on Monday

Adama was outstanding down the right and Munir scored the only goal of the match


Schalke 04, 0
Juvenil A, 1

FC Schalke 04 (0+0): Wellenreuther, Koseler (Avdijaj, min 77), Friedrich, Starke Hedlund, Neubauer, Itter (Bodenröder, min 84), Müller, Multhap, Pick (Lohmar, min 80), S. Sané & Platte.

Juvenil A (0+1): Jose Suárez, Godswill (Palencia, min 82), Riera, Rodri, Quintillà, Ortega, Kaptoum, Enguene (Ros, min 90), Adama, Maxi Rolón (Moha, min 69) & Munir.

Goals: 0-1, min 71, Munir.

Referee: Pawel Raczkowski (Poland, asisted by Marcin Borkowski & Paweł Sokolnicki). Yellow cards for Koseler & Sané of Schalke, and Quintillà, Kaptoum & Rodri of FCB.

FC Barcelona are through to the first ever final of the UEFA Youth League. In today’s semi-final in Nyon, the side coached by Jordi Vinyals outplayed Schalke 04 with some very attack-minded tactics. Adama and Munir were the stars of the show, but the midfield and defence also posted solid displays. The final is on Monday 14 at 4.30 PM CET against Benfica, who slammed Real Madrid 4-0 in today’s other semi.

Twenty patient minutes

Barça made their intentions clear from the start, but Schalke 04 held them at bay and created plenty of danger on the counter attack. Maxi Rolón came close for the Germans after six minutes, but FCB keeper Suárez turned the ball behind for a corner, and was called upon again in the 12th minute to make a providential save, this time from a Sané effort.

But after a dicey first 20 minutes, Barça started coming into their own. They began to dominate the midfield and soon enjoyed two close chances of their own. Kaptoum twice found gaps in the Scalke defence, but Wellenreuther managed to get in the way of both attempts.

Adama and Munir on show

The second half saw further improvements to FC Barcelona’s game. Adama started creating serious danger down the right, while Munir was finally finding the space he needed in the middle, but despite a series of efforts, the impressive German keeper was proving nigh on impossible to beat.

However, Barça kept pressing, and finally got their reward. Moha, seconds after coming on as sub, went on a wonderful solo run down the left and crossed to Munir who came through at the far post to strike the ball home. For once, Wellenreuther was nowhere to be seen.

Confident ending

Adama, Munir and Moha continued creating problems for Schalke, and with their colleagues looking tight at the back, Barça looked more likely to extend their lead than the Germans did to equalising – but there was no further score. The first edition of the UEFA Youth League could well end in a famous triumph for FC Barcelona. Now only Benfica stand between them and the trophy. All will be revealed on Monday.