Barcelona give positive update on Ousmane Dembele after successful surgery

Good news for all parties.

There’s finally some good news in the injury saga of Barcelona’s latest signing Ousmane Dembélé.

FC Barcelona announced on their official website that the operation on his left leg was successful and he’s expected to be out for three and a half months.

“FC Barcelona striker Ousmane Dembélé was successfully operated on Tuesday to repair a ruptured biceps femoris in his left leg.

“Dr. Sakari Orava performed the surgery. Dembélé remains under the supervision of Dr. Ricard Pruna. He is expected to be out for three and a half months.”

FC Barcelona

The estimate of three and a half months is shorter than the club’s original statement which suggested he could be out for up to four months.

However, Barcelona will want to be careful with their key signing when he returns to avoid any other problems.

Ousmane Dembélé up for 2017 Golden Boy award

Would be a nice honor for the new signing

Barcelona’s key summer signing Ousmane Dembélé is up for the 2017 Golden Boy award. The award is given out by the Italian newspaper Tuttosport and is given annually to Europe’s best footballer in a calendar year under the age of 21.

Tuttosport have some of the largest newspapers in Europe vote on the award, including Marca and Mundo Deportivo in Spain. This is the 15th iteration of the award that was founded in 2003. The last and only Barcelona player to win the award was Lionel Messi in 2005.

If you’re interested in the entire list of nominees, you can find them here:

Juventus; Steven Bergwijn, PSV Eindhoven; Dominic Calvert-Lewin, Everton; Federico Chiesa, Fiorentina; Ousmane Dembélé, Barcelona; Amadou Diawara, Napoli; Kasper Dolberg, Ajax; Gianluigi Donnarumma, Milan; Kylian Mbappé, Paris Saint-Germain; Emre Mor, Celta Vigo; Reece Oxford, Borussia Mönchengladbach; Christian Pulisic, Borussia Dortmund; Marcus Rashford, Manchester United; Gabriel Jesus, Manchester City; Joe Gomez, Liverpool; Benjamin Henrichs, Bayer Leverkusen; Borja Mayoral, Real Madrid; Allan Saint-Maximim, Nice; Dominic Solanke, Liverpool; Theo Hernandez, Real Madrid; Aarón Martin, Espanyol; Jean-Kévin Augustin, RB Leipzig; Rodrigo Bentacur, Youri Tielemans, Monaco; Enes Ünal, Villarreal; Kyle Walker-Peters, Tottenham.

Good luck Ousmane!

FC Barcelona News: 19 September 2017; Samuel Umtiti Given Rest, Barca Legends to Play in Bulgaria

Match Preview: FC Barcelona vs Eibar | FC Barcelona
Four games into the fledgling 2017/18 La Liga campaign, the view from above is breathtaking. From its lofty perch in the league pecking order, Barça—which welcomes Eibar to Camp Nou on Tuesday night—has nothing above it but open sky, while a flock of teams clutch for a seat on the branches below.

Digne, Aleix Vidal and Vermaelen, in match day squad | FC Barcelona
The available first team players were put through their paces at the Tito Vilanova pitch at the Ciutat Esportiva Joan Gamper to finish their preparations for Wednesday’s match. The blaugranas receive Eibar in a match corresponding to the fifth La Liga fixture of the season in which they will try and continue their perfect start to stay top of the table.

Ernesto Valverde: Six down, three to go | FC Barcelona
Barça manager Ernesto Valverde fielded a grand total of 18 questions from the media in under 20 minutes on Monday, appearing relaxed and confident in his first-place team just 24 hours ahead of Tuesday night’s midweek La Liga clash with Eibar.

Ousmane Dembele injury partly down to inexperience – Barcelona’s Valverde | ESPN
Dembele, 20, flew to Helsinki, Finland, on Monday to be operated on by specialist doctor Sakari Orava after rupturing a tendon in Saturday’s 2-1 win over Getafe. Footage has since indicated that the France international appeared to have a slight problem in the warm-up.

Ousmane Dembele’s injury provides latest opportunity for Gerard Deulofeu | ESPN
If it’s not one thing it’s another for Barcelona coach Ernesto Valverde. Appointed as Luis Enrique’s successor at the very end of May, in the time which has followed he’s seen Neymar leave for Paris Saint-Germain, a vote of no confidence launched against the club’s board and the transfer window close with a failure to either buy or sell particularly sufficiently.

Ernesto Valverde hasn’t disappointed as Barcelona manager – Bartomeu | ESPN
The Catalan giants had an embarrassing transfer window. Star forward Neymar shockingly left the club for Paris Saint-Germain in a world-record deal. And the Blaugrana very publicly failed in their attempt to bring Liverpool playmaker Philippe Coutinho — for whom they bid three times — to the Camp Nou.

Barcelona reiterate €200m demand for Coutinho while ruling out January arrivals | Goal
Barcelona president Josep Maria Bartomeu maintains that Liverpool demanded €200 million for Philippe Coutinho over the summer, pricing them out of the market. The La Liga giants spent much of the transfer window pursuing the Brazilian forward, with the departure of Neymar in a record-breaking €222m deal leading them to seek out reinforcements.

Barça Legends in action in Bulgaria | FC Barcelona
The game will be coach ‘Chapi’ Ferrer’s second game in charge on the former Barça players team and his squad for the trip to Easter Europe is as follows: Angoy, Guzmán, Juan Carlos, Dehú, Goikoetxea, Quique Estebaranz, Julio Salinas, Popescu, Sánchez Jara, Sergi Barjuan, Santi Ezquerro, Miquel Àngel Nadal and Juan Carlos Moreno plus debutants Dani García, Óscar Arpón and Jari Litmanen.

Barcelona have ‘no plans’ to strengthen in January, says Bartomeu

But Ousmane Dembele should be back by then

Barcelona president Josep Maria Bartomeu says the club have “no plans” currently to strengthen when the transfer window reopens in January.

The club brought in Ousmane Dembele, Paulinho, Nelson Semedo and Gerard Deulofeu this summer.

They were also linked with a vast array of plaers and were keen to sign Philippe Coutinho but were unable to prise him from Liverpool.

However, it looks as though there may be no new additions to the squad now until next summer, according to the president.

“There are no plans for the winter market,” he said. “[Dembele] will be back and he will show us all what we have already seen.

“I have spoken with him, he’s affected, but that’s normal. He told me he knows everything will be okay, though, and that he’s in good hands. By Wednesday or Thursday, he will be back in Barcelona.

“He could return in January, I hope so because that would represent a nice present for all Barcelona fans on Three Kings Day [January 6].”

Source | TVE (via FourFourTwo)

Hopefully Dembele will be back fit and firing in January and his return will be warmly welcomed.

The January window is a tricky one with the best players usually unavailable and prices at a premium and it looks like it might be a quiet one for Barca.

Barcelona announce squad for La Liga match against Eibar

Ernesto Valverde has called up 18 players for Tuesday’s match at Camp Nou

The next Barcelona match is upon us! The Blaugrana continue their La Liga campaign with a home match against Eibar at Camp Nou, and Ernesto Valverde has called up 18 players to be in uniform on Tuesday night.

This is the full squad:


Goalkeepers: 1. Marc-André ter Stegen, 13. Claudio Bravo

Defenders: 2. Nélson Semedo, 3. Gerard Piqué, 14. Javier Mascherano, 18. Jordi Alba, 19. Lucas Digne, 22. Aleix Vidal, 25. Thomas Vermaelen

Midfielders: 4. Ivan Rakitic, 5. Sergio Busquets, 6. Denis Suarez, 8. Andrés Iniesta, 15. Paulinho Bezerra, 20. Sergi Roberto

Forwards: 9. Luis Suárez, 10. Lionel Messi, 16. Gerard Deulofeu


Valverde makes a lot of changes to the squad that played at Getafe, which suggests a few rotations to the starting lineup as well. In come Thomas Vermaelen, Aleix Vidal and Lucas Digne, out go Samuel Umtiti, André Gomes and Ousmane Dembélé, who’s injured and out until January. André Gomes, Paco Alcácer and Arda Turan are left out per Valverde’s decision.

Predicted starting lineup (4-3-3):

Ter Stegen; Semedo, Mascherano, Vermaelen, Digne; Roberto, Busquets, Denis; Vidal, Messi, Deulofeu


The match kicks off on Tuesday at 10pm CET / 9pm (UK & Nigeria) / 4pm ET, 1pm PT (USA), 1:30am IST (India, Wednesday), and you can join us to follow and comment all the action.

VISCA EL BARÇA!

Barcelona vs. Eibar: Team News, Match Preview

Can the league leaders stay unbeaten in La Liga?

Following a hard-fought comeback victory away to Getafe, Barcelona return to La Liga action with a match at Camp Nou against Eibar on Tuesday night. The Basque Country club have been in the Spain top flight for a while and are very much established as a La Liga team built on hard work and defensive organization.

Barça have very much dominated this fixture since Eibar earned promotion in 2014, winning all six meetings and scoring 20 goals with just 5 conceded. Ernesto Valverde has also enjoyed success against Eibar as Athletic Bilbao manager, with four wins and just one loss in six encounters with the Armeros.

The Blaugrana come into Tuesday’s match as clear favorites and will be hoping to make it five wins out of their first five league matches, which could have a huge impact on the title race later. The performance against Getafe was poor and the team looked tired and uninspired after three tough matches in seven days last week, so Valverde will probably make some rotations this time in hopes of getting fresher bodies and a better showing from the team.


MATCH INFO, TV/STREAMING

Date/Time: Tuesday, September 19, 2017, 10pm local time, 9pm (UK & Nigeria), 4pm ET, 1pm PT (USA), 1:30am IST (India, Wednesday),

Venue: Camp Nou, Barcelona, Catalonia

Television: beIN SPORTS (USA & Canada), Sky Sports Mix (UK), SuperSport 7 (Nigeria), SONY TEN 2 (India)

Online streaming: beIN SPORTS CONNECT (USA & Canada), Sky GO (UK), FuboTV (7-day free trial, click here to sign up)

(Listings via LiveSoccerTV)


TEAM NEWS

Valverde rested Nélson Semedo on Saturday, so the Portuguese will surely return to the team against Eibar. Samuel Umtiti has been left out of the squad to get a rest, so Javier Mascherano will come to the defense alongside Gerard Piqué. Jordi Alba has played a lot of minutes this season and after resting one full-back on Saturday, Valverde will probably rest the other against Eibar.

In midfield, we could get a lot of changes, maybe in all three positions. Ivan Rakitic, Sergio Busquets and Andrés Iniesta started every game since the international break and could get a day off here, and that opens the door for the three players that had a big impact against Getafe: Sergi Roberto, Paulinho and Denis Suarez were directly involved in the two winning goals, and it might be good idea to see the three together in midfield. With André Gomes out of the squad, Roberto will be the holding midfielder if Busquets is indeed rested, with Paulinho and Denis in front of Sergi to supply the attack.

Up front, Gerard Deulofeu will surely start in place of Ousmane Dembélé with Lionel Messi and Luis Suárez completing the front three. Messi and Suárez combined for 14 goals against Eibar over the years and will be looking to improve their record. The problem is Suárez is in horrible form, so maybe the Uruguayan is dropped and Aleix Vidal comes in on the right wing, with Deulofeu on the left and Messi at False Nine.

But Valverde hasn’t rotated at all this season, so maybe he’ll start the same eleven from the Getafe game with the only change being forced (Deulofeu for Dembélé). It’s important to note Valverde didn’t rotate much at Bilbao, and maybe Umtiti is the only one getting a day off after all.


POSSIBLE LINEUPS

Barcelona (4-3-3)

Ter Stegen; Semedo, Piqué, Mascherano, Digne; Paulinho, Roberto, Denis; Deulofeu, Messi, Suárez

Eibar (4-4-2)

Dmitrovic; Capa, Oliveira, Gálvez, José Ángel; Peña, Jordán, Dani García, Inui; Kike, Enrich


PREDICTION

The game against Getafe was a warning that this team is very much a work in progress, but the team is back home and we’ll get a good win against a team we usually play pretty well against: 3-0 Barça.

Paulinho Critics Made the Mistake of Setting Expectations Too Low

The Brazilian was by far Barça’s most controversial signing

Paulinho silenced critics, at least temporarily, with a great debut goal that capped a 2-1 comeback for Barcelona over Getafe.

The Brazilian had been met by great skepticism among the Camp Nou faithful, as he had been playing in China after an unsuccessful spell in Europe with Tottenham Hotspur.

He came on as a sub and made one of his trademark driving runs, received a pass from Lionel Messi, and charged in with his physicality, dispatching a shot past a helpless keeper.

Cules were ecstatic, perhaps none more so than the Barcelona board. According to a report in Diario SPORT, the ones present at the match were incredibly happy. They pointed to Robert Fernandez, the sporting director who was under pressure after a tumultuous summer transfer window, in celebration.

Paulinho’s critics may not be fully convinced yet after just one goal, but it has changed the narrative surrounding him, at least for the moment.

Perhaps they made a miscalculation in excoriating him to such a degree even before he had played a match for the Blaugrana. The result was expectations were set so low that scoring a winning goal is now being seen as either a miracle or proof that they didn’t know what they were talking about at all.

Paulinho starts for the Brazilian national team, after all. Sure, the international game is different than the club game. But Brazil are still one of the top teams in the world, and it’s hard to think anyone would become an automatic starter for them at this point, or score a hat trick away to Uruguay, and be completely without merit.

The criticism of the signing is fair if you steer away from hyperbole. Paulinho cost 40 million, still not exactly a pittance even in this crazy market. He’s 29 and on a long deal that could see him become unsellable when he declines.

He needs to be judged by the barometer of a 40-million-euro player, not by the barometer set by Twitter memes that suggest he’s totally useless.

Barcelona needed a long term midfield starter to replace Andres Iniesta, or one that would immediately challenge Ivan Rakitic. Liverpool’s Philippe Coutinho was in the first category, Paris Saint-Germain’s Marco Verratti in the other. Neither came.

Instead, you have Paulinho, and likely Rakitic and Iniesta still starting for the foreseeable future. That’s something everyone knows was not what Barça needed this offseason.

Still, Paulinho is here and not just to collect a paycheck. He’s not so poor we should expect him never to score, obviously. In fact, he can be useful, as he has already shown. And he deserves fans’ support, just like any other player.

His limitations still are what they are. It’s best not to go overboard, though – in either direction.

A come from behind win and Barcelona continue undefeated.

Marty McFly could have literally gotten out of the DeLorean in front of me and I still wouldn’t have believed who scored the goals for Barcelona.

Another victory, another article celebrating the tremendous effort put in by the players. While it would’ve been exciting to keep the clean sheets going for as long as possible, it is still very enjoyable to have just one goal against. Hope I didn’t just jinx them! And, along with enjoying all the possibilities football presents, I am thoroughly enthused to be able to once again write an article on our team. After having to evacuate because of hurricane Irma and not being able to write for two games, I was looking forward to being able to write about this one. Internet is still very spotty, so I write this not knowing if I’ll be able to post in an hour’s time, or in a day or two.

While Getafe’s goal was one of the most beautiful goals I’ve seen recently, the result of the first half wasn’t entirely what I would’ve wanted to see. I honestly didn’t enjoy being down on the score line, but truthfully found it hard not to enjoy that howler. I did, however, enjoy a team coming back down a score after going to the locker room and seemingly getting directions from the coach. Not to mention seeing the subs literally being the difference between no points and a successful outing. The defense seemingly continues to be the strength of this team, therefore it will be tremendous to have a team that keeps a strong defense while finally finding their footing for a devastating offense.

Irish Goat’s Gamboling Goleadores!

1st Goleador: Samuel Umtiti

Umtiti continues to be the gem of the defense, and quite frankly a very big reason this team has had such an outstanding start defensively. While the addition of a skilled right back has done much to improve this team in many, many areas, Umtiti’s defensive acumen is still a large part of our successes. Quite honestly, if it had not been for a strike that was out of this world, there is no reason why we cannot assume the clean sheets would have continued unabated. As it stands so far, however, we have only a single goal against, a very strong start in both Liga and Champions, and the type of defensive solidity which provides a strong foothold on the path towards silverware.

2nd Goleador: Andrés Iniesta

The don’s game was very solid. I liked it so much that I am choosing him for basically only a single half, as he didn’t really play much of the second. I thought about giving the second spot to Denis or Deulo, but I think both need more minutes consistently playing well in order to crack the Goleadores. We might have seen a Barcelona eerily similar to last year’s, but even in that drab first half, Don Andrés was the only bright spot.

3rd Goleador: Ernesto Valverde

Many of us wanted him gone after the thorough beating at the hands of our bitter rivals in the Spanish Supercopa, yet he has shown he is capable of leading this team and expunging the best results he can out of his stable of players. It is finally very enjoyable to see players being used in their natural positions, and the positive results that this entails. If Valverde manages to utilize players to their best potential, in positions where they will thrive, then all of a sudden Barcelona has quite a decent bench. This is why the third spot goes to the coach.

Visca Barça!

Liga Watch: Real Sociedad Finally Lose, Sevilla Move Into Second

Malaga and Alaves still winless

Real Madrid beat Real Sociedad 3-1 to get back to their winning ways, meaning La Real failed to win for the first time this season. This left Barcelona sole leaders atop the league, as they mounted a 2-1 comeback win over Getafe.

Meanwhile, Sevilla moved into second place as Luis Muriel scored the lone goal in a 1-0 win away to Girona. They’re on a three-game win streak after their opening day 1-1 draw against Espanyol.

Malaga and Alaves are in trouble, both rooted to the basement in the league, both without a single point to their name. Malaga lost to Atletico Madrid as the colchoneros unveiled their new stadium with a 1-0 triumph.

Alaves looked hopeless again as Villarreal thrashed them 3-0 with a brace from Cedric Bakambu and another from Carlos Bacca.

Alaves, playing with ex Barça wonderboys Bjoan Krkic and Munir El-Haddadi upfront, have yet to score a goal in their four games. They look dead certain to be relegated if they continue on their current course.

Espanyol got a much-needed win over Celta, 2-1. That’s their first win of the season, meaning only Deportivo, alongside Malaga and Alaves, are yet to win.

Levante could be a team to watch this season. The recently promoted side got a draw in the Valencian derby against Valencia CF. Enis Bardhi cancelled out Rodrigo Moreno’s opener to make the game end at 1-1.

That puts Levante 8th in the table, yet to lose. It’s even more impressive if you consider Levante drew against Real Madrid at the Santiago Bernabeu. Somewhat surprisingly, Levante also drew with Depor – the only point Depor has managed so far this season.

Ernesto Valverde talks who could replace Ousmane Dembele for Barcelona

The Barcelona coach says he has a range of options

Barcelona coach Ernesto Valverde has been discussing who could come in and replace Ousmane Dembele for Tuesday night’s clash with Eibar at Camp Nou.

The Frenchman has been ruled out for up to four months due to injury meaning Valverde must makes changes to his team for tomorrow’s game.

“There are several players that can play that position,” he said.

“We have [Gerard] Deulofeu, Aleix Vidal, Denis Suarez, Andre Gomes. There’s also the B team. We will look for alternatives to put together a side.

“Vidal’s a good player who can play at right-back or further forward, so he’s a useful player to have.

“Performances in training and in games are what decisions are based on and Arda, too, is very much a squad player who is here to play.”

Source | ESPN

Deulofeu appears the most obvious choice to come in but Valverde does have options and it will be interesting to see which team he goes with tomorrow night.