What if Koeman finally got it right with Griezmann’s position?

To the sidewalk. Getafe scored a before and an after in Koeman’s management with Griezmann. In the pre-match, the player implicitly asked the coach to remove him from the band. Despite the interference, Koeman accepted the criticism and put Griezmann as a fake new. Plus, he gave her the 90 minutes. “Go on, show me I’m wrong,” he failed to say.


Young people mark the way to Europe (5-1)

67 days after the saddest night in Europe, Barça returned to the Champions League with a strange thrashing. Yes, he won, but he did it at such a low pace that at times it didn’t look like an official match. The joy was brought by the young people, who do not have time to cry thinking about Lisbon, as they are in a hurry to build a future. Young people like Ansu, who has normalized the fact that a 17-year-old dwarf scores goals in Europe.


The attack with better names of Second, forced to be more productive

The calendar gives Espanyol the opportunity to recover very soon from the first defeat of the season, experienced on Sunday in Vallecas. The white-and-blues will open this Wednesday (4.30 pm, #Vamos) the first interweekly day of the course against a Mirandés to whom he gave in the summer two of the last pearls formed in Sant Adrià, Víctor Gómez and Moha Ezzarfani . Two players who are feeling important under the orders of Borja Jiménez and who will be two threats that will have to take into account a Spaniard who, despite remaining at the top of the standings, still has many duties pending. Vicente Moreno has built the team from the ground up, fortifying a solid defense that has only conceded one goal in six games. The Massanassa coach, however, needs his attack, which by name is without a doubt the best in the category, to start being more productive.

Although Espanyol is the fourth highest scoring team in Segona, with seven goals, the figure can be a bit misleading: in two games (Mallorca and Rayo) it went unmarked and in two (Sabadell and Alcorcón) it only went make a goal. In just two games and against teams from the lower zone (Albacete and Oviedo) he has scored more than one goal.

Last season the lack of goal-scoring success was one of the main reasons for the white-and-blue relegation. No player has scored more than four goals in the league. In addition, the goal was widely distributed between strikers (10), midfielders (7) and defenders (8). A task that this year is centralizing forwards and wingers: De Tomás, Wu Lei, Embarba, Melendo and Melamed have shared the seven goals scored. Puado, Vargas, Vadillo and Campuzano have not been released yet. Nine strikers with enough level to play, most, in much of the First Division teams.

Names aside, what is missing from Espanyol to be more productive in attack? The data confirm that this is not a problem of lack of possession, as the white-and-blues are the third group that accumulates more of the category, 56.3%, surpassed only by Almeria and Girona. In addition, it is the team that records more good passes in total (263 per game) and in the opposite field (138 per duel).

Without imbalance or precision

The main shortcoming, therefore, is not mastery. There are two facets in which, on the other hand, there is much room for improvement. The first is in the ability to unbalance: it is the ninth team in the category in terms of completed irrigation, 4.8 per duel. Against Rayo neither Puado nor Vargas knew how to stretch the team enough, which caused Raúl de Tomás to play closer to the center circle than the rival area. Espanyol did not take much advantage of the entry of Melamed, Embarba and Vadillo in the second half. It is the seventh team in good centers (only 2.6 per game), a worrying figure considering the good footing of most of its players.

Without depth, the white-and-blues closed in Vallecas the first game without finishing between the three posts. However, they are still the fourth team with the most shots (6.5 per game) and the third with the most shots between the three posts (3 per game) in the entire Second Division. Two facts that confirm that the other big aspect that is missing is the aim. Some shortcomings that Vicente Moreno will want to correct in the face of a hard bone to gnaw, the third least scored team in the category.


Barça contract extended: Ter Stegen now costs half a billion

DFB goalkeeper Marc-Andre ter Stegen extended his contract with FC Barcelona and agreed on a long cooperation with the Catalans. In addition to the 28-year-old, who has played for Barça since 2014, three other top performers have long been committed to the traditional club.

FC Barcelona has extended the contracts of national football goalkeeper Marc-André ter Stegen and three other important professionals in one fell swoop. According to a club announcement, the 28-year-old goalkeeper agreed to work with the Catalans until mid-2025. The contract therefore contains a fixed transfer fee of 500 million euros. Ter Stegen has been with the Spanish top club since 2014. Since then he has won the Champions League, the Spanish Championship and the Spanish Cup, among others. He is currently absent due to a knee injury.

Defense chief Gerard Piqué, who was thrown off the pitch in the 5-1 win against Ferencvaros Budapest at the start of the Champions League season on Tuesday evening, can only leave Barça for half a billion euros. However, the total with him depends on a number of stakes. It extended until 2024. Frankie De Jong, who only moved to Barcelona a year ago, extended his contract, which ran until 2024, until 2026 and now has a fixed transfer fee of 400 million euros. Defender Clément Lenglet agreed on a contract until 2026. The Frenchman has a release clause of 300 million euros in his contract.

Against Budapest, it was the first game in the premier class after the cracking 2-8 debacle against FC Bayern at the final tournament in mid-August, superstar Lionel Messi gave Barcelona the lead with a penalty (27th). Young star Ansu Fati (42nd) increased before the break. In the second section, the former Munich Philippe Coutinho (52nd), Pedri (82nd) ​​and Ousmane Dembele (89th) increased the result even further. The Magyars were only able to shorten the game with a penalty from Igor Charatin (70th).


The Hungarians who wrote Barça’s gold pages (Toni Padilla)

On September 2, 1983, the Hungarian Ferenc Platko was buried in a modest tomb with his wife in the General Cemetery of Santiago de Chile. Without a penny in his pocket, Platko had sent letters to the Barça offices asking for financial help until the last days of his life. Letters that broke his heart, in which he passed a list of his illnesses and miseries. That excellent goalkeeper who had been one of the most famous Barcelonans in the 1920s, died very poor in Chile, where five years ago the management of Colo-Colo, a club where he was also loved, prevented his remains they ended up in an anonymous ossuary making way for the mausoleum that the club has in the cemetery to remember the names that have made this entity great.

Ferenc Platko (Budapest, 1898 – Santiago, 1983) was the first Hungarian to defend the Barça shirt. That “ blond Platko from Hungary”, As Rafael Alberti wrote in a poem, was the first man to unite the destiny of Hungarian football with that of Barça. To talk about Hungary, at the Camp Nou, is to talk about the past, about old black and white photos. But without this past, Barça would not be what it is now. “Hungarian football influenced all the great football teams in history, including Barça,” said British journalist Jonathan Wilson, author of a book analyzing the influence of Hungarian football around the world.

Barça grew up thanks to Kubala, Kocsis, Czibor and Platko. But instead, Hungarian football has been getting smaller since these footballers emigrated. Although Ferencváros was able to win a Fairs Cup in 1965 and reach the Recopa final in 1975, Hungarian football was dying out. It no longer scares anyone. He is no longer admired. “The history of his football is the history of the country. Of the Holocaust, which ended many coaches and players. Of Soviet repression. If Hungary influenced everyone it was because people were fleeing. Already in the 1920s, when the new independent Hungary is experiencing civil strife and poverty, a first batch of coaches and players left. The second, in the 1950s, left the footballers of the future without teachers, “says Wilson. The first batch was that of Platko. The second, that of Kubala and Kocsis.

Now that Barça will host the country’s most popular club, Ferencváros, in an official match for the first time, a team with more foreign players than Hungarians arrives. In the match in which they qualified for the Champions League final, only two players from the starting line-up were Hungarians. The coach, too, as he is the Ukrainian Serhí Rebrov, Shevchenko’s teammate when Dinamo Kiev won 0-4 at the Camp Nou in 1997. Ferencváros is a club that has been modernized thanks to the money from its owner, politician Gábor Kubatov, who uses the club to consolidate his image. A historic club far removed from its tradition, as it was key, along with its eternal rival, MTK Budapest, in the reformulation of modern football in the 1920s, when it played four friendlies in Barcelona in 1923. and in 1928. He lost them all but one.

“For the Hungarians this match is very special. Now we are very sorry that the figure of Kubala is not as well known as that of Puskás, as Kubala left Hungary before and was not in the 1954 world runner-up selection. “, explains Barnabás Kovács, the consul of Hungary in Barcelona. Although Barça have had more Hungarians than Madrid, in Budapest there is more talk of the milestones of Ferenc Puskás, three-time European champion with Madrid. A hero so respected that he was buried in the pantheon of national heroes in the capital. Kubala, on the other hand, is still fairly unknown in Hungary and it was Kovács who recently managed to get a park with his name. “In Barcelona, ​​on the other hand, every time I say I’m Hungarian, they tell me about Kubala. In Budapest they tell me about Messi,” he jokes. Kubala’s legacy is so precious that he is one of only two players with a statue at the Camp Nou. The other, of course, is Cruyff. “He was like a rock star. Everyone knew him, but he was so kind that he had seen him give clothes to people begging in the streets. Kubala changed the history of the club, yes. He and the other Hungarians, Czibor and Kocsis “They wore a more dynamic, more technical style,” explains photographer Horacio Seguí, who was well acquainted with the batch of footballers of the 1950s and 1960s.

He was like a rock star. Everyone knew him, but he was so kind that he had seen him give clothes to people begging in the streets. Kubala changed the history of the club, yes.

Horacio Seguí Photographer

In total, seven Hungarians have played for Barça. The first was Platko, Barça from 1922 to 1932. With him, Barça won the first League in history and three Cups. The goalkeeper arrived at Barça in 1923, from MTK in Budapest, to replace Ricardo Zamora, who was returning to Espanyol. Strong, authoritarian and brave, he was the son of a football school, the Hungarian, then more developed. “Hungary, with the influence of English coaches and struggling to beat the Austrians, was developing an idea of ​​modern football in which a lot of importance was given to technique,” ​​Wilson explains. Quickly, the fans of the Cortes fell in love with Platko, who in the 1928 Cup final, against the Royal Society, ended up in hospital after receiving a hoax. It was an epic match, as Platko had to be helped off the pitch as an injury meant he was unable to finish the game. Platko were given a chance to change things around. In the end, Platko was key to tie the game and Barça would win the Cup after two draws. At the hospital, the goalkeeper was visited by Carlos Gardel, the tango singer. And he was immortalized by the poem by Rafael Alberti. Then came the former Ferencváros player Elemér Berkessy, born in Romania but Hungarian, who was a Barça player from 1934 to 1936, and the Jew György Silberstein Szeder, who played a single match and died at the hands of the Nazis during the Second World War. World Cup.

The sticks of Bern

But the relationship between the Hungarians and Barça was united forever in the 1950s, first with the arrival of Kubala (Barça player in the years 1950-61), and then with Sándor Kocsis (1958-66) and Zoltán Czibor ( 1958-61). Kubala had fled Hungary as early as 1948, while Kocsis and Cizbor would do so in 1956, after the Soviet invasion of the country. The two of them were part of the so-called golden team, Aranycsapat, the team that played the best football in the 1950s led by Gusztáv Sebes, a former communist mechanic who brought political ideas to the field: team football and help the opponent. With the support of the authorities, who allowed him to have many comforts, he revolutionized football with a golden generation. “Hungary then had the best football in the world. They almost won the 1954 World Cup and were the first to defeat the English at Wembley, by 3 to 6,” says Kovács. With them, Barça almost won their first European Cup, but clashed with Bern’s clubs: they lost to Benfica 3-2 despite goals from Czibor and Kocsis. “Kocsis was a fantastic man, a pure shooter, who fit very well into a team where all the players knew how to play well with their feet. We always talk about the Kocsis shooter, but with his feet he was equally fantastic,” recalls his teammate. team and great friend Luis Suárez from Milan. Czibor, baptized as Pájaro Loco, was a more anarchic genius. “But when I wanted to play, I was the best,” says the Galician.

“All the world champion teams from 1934 onwards have, in some way, had Hungarian influence. Hungarians are an emigrant people, partly because of wars or invasions. And both in the 1920s and 1930s, and especially after in World War II, coaches and players from Hungary spread around the world, ”Wilson argues. The Hungarian school was the antechamber of Dutch total football. And the style of Barça, a club where the beauty of the game was already taken care of in the 1920s, draws from these two sources.

Barça have also been coached by three Hungarians: Jesza Poszony (1923 and 1924), Franz Platko (1934-35 and 1955-56) and Ladislau Kubala (1962-63 and 1980). Poszony, who came from MTK, a club that had revolutionized the concept of passing the ball, opting for the short pass, helped change the way Barça’s youth football was worked out in the 1920s.

But that legacy had no continuity. Laszlo Kaszner and Tibor Szalay tried unsuccessfully in the 1960s, but little by little, the Hungarian star faded away. And the Dutch accent took the place the Hungarian had taken at the Camp Nou. To talk about Hungary, at Barça, is to talk about our grandparents’ idols. Of foreigners who brought new ideas, of a football that was great and now, instead, already celebrates as a success to be able to get to the Camp Nou, the stadium that, according to legend, was built because Kubala had left small the Cortes. An exaggeration turned into a beautiful fable to pay tribute to the Hungarians who helped make Barça great.


French disconnection in Barça attack (Albert Nadal)

The credit of Antoine Griezmann and Ousmane Dembélé remains in doubt. The former is disappointed with his performances at Barça and the latter is still far from the perception of choral play. The defeat at the Coliseum Alfonso Pérez meant a general suspension of the whole team – “We weren’t up, we didn’t play a good game”, admitted Sergio Busquets – but Griezmann and Dembélé missed a good opportunity to vindicate themselves in the eyes of his new coach, Ronald Koeman, who has arrived in Barcelona ready to end the lineups by decree and the privileged treatment in the locker room, as he showed by giving the title to Pedri, a 17-year-old footballer and the best Barça player against Getafe. At the Dutch coach’s Barça there is only one footballer who eats separately and this is Leo Messi. The others will gain opportunities following the principles of meritocracy.

Saturday’s game, despite the difficulty of playing against an uncomfortable rival, took exam tints for Barça’s two French strikers. After a week of cross-statements, in which Griezmann let go after the last match with France that coach Didier Deschamps does know where to put him, Ronald Koeman took him off the right wing and gave him the tip position. It would also not be the ideal place in the trajectory of the ex-mattress, but the Dutch coach took him away from the band so he could participate more in the team game after in the match against Sevilla at the Camp Nou Griezmann connected with the ball in less than ten times throughout the first half. That day he was replaced in the 61st minute and only completed 16 passes in total (15 with success), a fact that shows his low incidence in the game. Against Getafe, playing again, he played 80 minutes and doubled the number of passes (34) but lowered the effectiveness (26 with success: 76%). The total number of contacts with the ball was 39, among which the failed hand-to-hand count is counted.

The starting striker who shoots the least

What penalizes Griezmann the most is his low offensive participation in the face of a goal when he wears the Barça shirt: in the four league games played so far he has only finished four times in goal (only one between the three posts) in 264 minutes. This equates to only one shot per game. Barça’s top scorer is Messi, with 12 shots (7 of them in goal) and 1 goal in 360 minutes. In fact, if the data is extended to the whole of 2020, Griezmann has only scored two goals in 28 shots on goal in the League, as reported by the SER. Figures that contrast with the effectiveness of Ansu Fati, who in the four league games has shot 6 times, four of which in goal, and has scored three goals in 231 minutes.

Dembélé’s analysis must be based on his title against Getafe, as until then he had barely played 20 minutes against Villarreal in a match already resolved and had not participated in the duels against Celta and Seville. In the preview of the match against Madrid, Koeman changed the icy speech he had maintained until then with the French winger. “Dembélé is getting better and better physically and I’m happy with how he’s trained in recent days,” said the coach before visiting the Coliseum Alfonso Pérez. The result was the title award giving rest to Ansu Fati, who had just played with Spain. The fact that Dembélé is a pure winger can be very useful for Koeman in front of teams that prevent the game from the central lanes, as he is adept at opening up field to the band, despite the Frenchman’s tendency to break inwards.

Griezmann has only finished once between the three posts in four league games

Dembélé’s main problems remain a lack of understanding of choral play and final decision making. The former Borussia Dortmund player disappointed in his first tenure as a Barça player almost a year after the last. In one hour on the pitch the Frenchman lost seven balls, more than any of his teammates who played the entire game (Dest, with 6 losses, two of which at the end of the game and which involved two dangerous counterattacks of Getafe, was the other soccer player who lost more balls). Many of Dembélé’s losses were after erratic dribbles in plays that seemed to start well but in which he ended up wrapping himself up. The fact that the French winger is a footballer who is still the rival and therefore takes more risks than most of his teammates, could apologize for his numerous losses, but his production against Getafe was nil (no shot on goal or any pass of merit). The French gunpowder of the Barça attack continues to melt.


Negotiating a pay cut with a dressing room at war (Xavi Hernández Navarro)

Lately, the Barça member doesn’t need the ball to distract himself. Leaving aside this Tuesday’s Champions League debut against Ferencváros and Saturday’s classic, the week at the Camp Nou promises even stronger emotions than a match against Real Madrid. In the Catalan offices there are many open fronts. One of them is the vote of censure, scheduled for the weekend of All Saints as long as justice does not paralyze it or the Procicat does not postpone it due to the increase in cases of covid, two possibilities as remote as desired between the dome of Josep Maria Bartomeu. And another has to do with the salary cut that the club needs to apply to players and employees to adapt to the harsh economic reality of the pandemic, a very delicate issue that generates debate in the locker room and shows the terrible relationship that has existed since for a long time between footballers and leaders.

Renegotiate salaries or put Barça at risk of bankruptcy

Most Barça players, whose salary is 70% of the club’s budget, are aware that they must make an effort to adapt their income to the current context. However, they are not willing to deal with a wage reformulation as proposed by the offices: following the Workers’ Statute. The four captains of the first team and their teammates demand that the case be addressed in private, as at the end of March, when in full confinement they agreed to reduce their salary by 70% until the resumption of competition.

The footballers believe that their work regime, with armored millionaire contracts and subject to goal bonuses, is too special to dissect at a negotiating table where there will be representatives from all departments and that, in addition, it must be formed before tomorrow. “The issue is laborious and surely the agreements will have to be negotiated one by one,” sources close to the locker room told ARA, where in addition to a bureaufax to communicate that the club’s proposal is rejected, a study is being published. critical letter with the forms of the board. Again, differences in the open between the lawn and the market.

Defer salaries until you can pay them

After losing 230 million in the last financial year, Barça need to regenerate the numbers with a substantial reduction in salaries. In fact, if there is still no spending budget for this campaign it is because the figure depends on the margin to adjust sports salaries. In this sense, formalities aside, the club is working to reduce by 30% the players’ emoluments, an amount that, however, would not be discounted forever, but would be largely deferred until paying it once the pandemic allows for a recovery of lost revenue.


Madrid falls asleep and suffers its first defeat in the League (0-1)

It happens to many small teams that when they play against a big one and forgive in the first half, they end up paying for it in the second. But this was not the case of Cádiz, which yesterday, against all odds, took all three points against Real Madrid (0-1). The whites, in a game where they fell asleep and never dominated, saw the Andalusian rival overtake them, especially in the first half. Madrid’s first defeat in the league was minimal, but if Cadiz had taken advantage of the many opportunities available, it would have ended in a thrashing.

The Madrid dressing room was self-critical and ended up thanking Barça for their defeat at Getafe. Because, in this way, they will reach the classic ahead in the standings. But today, if Betis wins, he could lose the lead. “This is what happens to you when you don’t get into a game well. In the second half we were better, but if in the first we managed to score two or three goals, we could not have complained. When you don’t start well, this can happen to you. There are no excuses “, said Zidane, assuming with fair play the defeat. “I’ve had to intervene too many times,” added goalkeeper Courtois. And when we wanted to fix it, in the second half, we found a team locked in their field. It has been impossible for us. “

Cadiz had enough fifteen minutes to prove he was up for the job, a time during which he had five very clear opportunities to get ahead. It was in the sixth when the goal came. A very poorly defended action from Madrid that ended with a Vaseline from Lozano. Álvaro Negredo enabled the Honduran player, who was left alone in front of Courtois.

Very unhappy with the performance of his players, Zidane tried to revolutionize the team with four changes in the half. The coach, annoyed, did not from the bench seeing how his bet had no effect. Because Cádiz was almost always the protagonist, and that after his goal he opted for a more conservative game, without taking risks. And it wasn’t until the final stretch of the match that he brazenly locked himself in his field to defend the result with a lock and bolt. The last fifteen minutes were the only ones in which Madrid could have scored a goal, and even got to kick the crossbar. The whites, who were dressed in pink yesterday, saw the referee invalidate a goal from Valverde for a previous offside that the VAR confirmed.

Branches, pardoned

The match, however, was marked by controversy surrounding Sergio Ramos. The center could have seen the red after two actions at the limit: a blow to the back to Choco Lozano, who would end up injured, and a kick to the knee. The referee showed only the yellow card. In the end, the Madrid captain stayed in the locker room in the middle, due to muscle problems. If he recovers, he will play at the Camp Nou next Saturday.


Barça and Madrid will play the most vulgar classic in recent years

A classic in off-peak hours. You have to go very far, but a lot, to find such a low level of the two great teams in the League before a classic. The excuse of tiredness for international matches is not enough to explain why Barça lost to Getafe after a terrible second half and no clear chances until the end.


Joan Mir, the new leader of the most unpredictable season (Martí Molina)

MotoGP had become accustomed to the overwhelming dominance of Marc Márquez, to the point that he was not prepared to find a replacement. And when Cervera broke his neck and bars before the first race of the season, he was orphaned of a clear favorite for the title. A new scenario that caused a catharsis in the queen category of the Motorcycle World Championship, with all the riders aspiring to fill this unexpected vacancy. The last to shake his head was Joan Mir. The rider from Palma, third in the Grand Prix of Aragon, was the leader of the event with only four races left to close a championship marked, apart from the multi-champion injury, by the coronavirus pandemic.

The victory in MotoGP was for Alex Rins. The Barcelona rider did less and less, as did the drivers who accompanied him on the podium, Àlex Márquez and Mir. The dominance that the Yamahas had shown in qualifying disappeared at the time of the truth, giving way to a race that very few could have foreseen. More or less, like the whole season.

Rins was the best of a Grand Prix in which the Yamaha – from Viñales and Quartararo – started very strong but deflated. The Catalan, behind the wheel of a Suzuki, was the leader at the equator and knew how to hold this position with his nails and teeth until the end. Àlex Márquez, who competed with morale in the clouds after the podium in France, managed to finish second and even contested victory for his compatriot. He was brave, but not reckless: a mistake three laps to the end, which was about to send him to the ground, made him think. He chose to be conservative before throwing all the work on the ground. So Rins, reliable as a clock, did not fail and came first. Márquez was second and Mir, third, climbed the podium and climbed to the MotoGP lead.

The World Cup returns next week, also in Alcañiz, in a race in which Marc Márquez could already reappear. Mathematically ruled out by the title, Cervera’s invites you to see in situ the battle to succeed him to the MotoGP throne.

Masià’s victory in Moto3

In the small category, the victory was for Jaume Masià. The Algemesí rider managed to maintain the first position in a hectic final, with up to seven riders opting for victory in the last lap. South African Darryn Binder was second, and Madrid’s Raúl Fernández, third.

As in all categories, after this race the championship is very open with up to six drivers with real options for victory. The world championship is led by Albert Arenas from Girona, with 144 points, followed by the Japanese Ogura (131), the Italians Vietti (126) and Arbolino (115), the British McPhee (109) and Masià (109).

In Moto2 the victory was for the British Sam Lowes, who won with great authority ahead of the Italian Enea Bastianini and the Madrid Jorge Martínez. Overall, Bastianini took the lead in the absence of four races.