Barca New Boy Paulinho Reveals Who Helped Him Settle in & What’s Surprised Him Most About the Club

New Barcelona midfielder Paulinho has certainly changed the opinions surrounding his ability since making the switch from China to Spain.

The Brazilian, who failed to make an impact at Tottenham before heading to the Chinese Super League, is now a key player at the Camp Nou, having already scored six times and assisted two goals in 15 La Liga appearances.

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He has had no difficulty adapting to the present Barca team and looks like he has been playing there for years. Speaking in an exclusive interview with ?Mundo Deportivo, the player admitted that it was easier to settle in because he had the help of his new teammates, particularly Lionel Messi, Luis Suarez and Sergio Busquets.

?“Since the first day I arrived, four months ago, many people helped me and my family,” he said. “All the players have been helping me, but I especially speak with three: Leo, Suárez, and Busquets. They are the ones who have helped me better understand the way Barça plays. 

Barcelona v Deportivo La Coruna - La Liga

“People think I’ve been here for a year or two? That’s a good sign. It’s a sign that I’m doing my job well.”

The 29-year-old also revealed what has surprised him the most about the club since he joined.

“The trainings,” he replied after being asked what stood out most. “The fans only see the matches, but I have no explanation on the high quality things that happen in training. 

“Many of my friends ask me how the quality of training is and I tell them: ‘It is better than you can imagine. It may seem easy, but it isn’t. You need to have some quality to play at Barça.”

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There was also something to be said on the situation with Javier Mascherano. The Argentinian could be on his way to China pretty soon, having fallen down the pecking order at Barca. And Paulinho admits having spoken about the Chinese league with the 33-year-old utility man.

“I don’t know how is situation is going,” he said. “He’s a player who’s been here for seven seasons. He and other players have asked me how the league in China is and I tell them that I have a lot of respect for the Chinese League. My life was very good there.

“When I arrived, Mascherano asked me if my family adapted in China, how the training was, and if the food was good. I told him that football has evolved a lot in China. I gave him the best possible people to talk to if he was interested in going to China. If he goes, I’m sure that he’ll like it.”

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Liverpool Reportedly Agree £133m Fee With Barcelona Over Star Attacker Philippe Coutinho

?Spanish outlet ?Sport are reporting that Barcelona and Liverpool have agreed over a January move for Brazilian ace Philippe Coutinho after months of negotiations.

The La Liga supremos tried their very best to bring Coutinho to the Camp Nou over the summer after selling Neymar to Paris Saint-Germain. But the Reds refused to let their player go, rejecting all of Barca’s offers.

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Sport, however, now claim that the Anfield side have given in and will accept the sum of £133m for the attacker, who is also reportedly set to sign a five-year deal that will see him earn £10.6m over the course of the aforementioned period.

Coutinho got off to a bit of a slow start this season, but looks to be his menacing self again after putting in some remarkable performances as of late.

This has resulted in the Catalan side renewing their interest in the player, and if the source mentioned above is to be believed, it appears that they will finally have their man in January.

Earlier this month, Liverpool manager Jurgen Klopp admitted that he was unsure if the club would keep the playmaker at Anfield past the January window.

“Not for one second have I thought about that so far,” he said. “I am not unsure, I am not sure, I don’t think about it.

“I have a team to prepare and no one knows what will happen in the nice and calm January transfer window. It’s nice from an outside view but I have absolutely nothing to say.”

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Lionel Messi’s Bizarre Show of Frustration Ends in Generous Offering for Barca Fans

?Lionel Messi made a pair of Barcelona fans ecstatic last Sunday by providing them with his worn football boots. After Barcelona’s 4-0 demolition of Deportivo La Coruna, Messi was seen after the game taking off his boots in frustration, before throwing them into the crowd of euphoric Barcelona supporters. 

However, Messi’s generous offering of his boots was fuelled by the player’s inability to score on the pitch. Messi currently sits level with Gerd Muller’s record of 525 goals for one single club, and during Barcelona’s victory over La Coruna the Argentine had a plethora of chances to eclipse the record.

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Although assisting two of the four goals for Luis Suarez and Paulinho, Messi missed a penalty, hit the woodwork three times, as well as a couple of good chances that you would ordinarily see him scoring. Funnily enough, Messi has hit the woodwork 14 times, which is the same amount of times he has scored this season in La Liga.

It was the case of ‘forgetting your shooting boots at home’ for the Barcelona star, who lobbed his boots so high and far into the crowd after walking off empty handed. With Barcelona facing Real Madrid in the ‘El Clasico’ this weekend, Messi will be hoping to have his right shooting boots for the much anticipated game.

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The ‘El Classico’ this time around will have a different tone to it than previous match-ups. The Catalan club currently top La Liga with an 11 point margin over their rivals Madrid, who occupy fourth.

Madrid will come into this game having been crowned the best team in the world after winning the Club World Cup. Thus, a win for Madrid in this game could spark a redemption in their underperforming season, which is why Messi will be hoping to have the right boots for the occasion.

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Barcelona Star Lionel Messi Involved in €30m Specialist Hospital Project

?Barcelona and Argentina star Lionel Messi has pledged to help with the construction of a hospital in Europe poised to deal with cancer in children, per ?Marca.

The forward has had a long relationship with children’s hospital Sant Joan de Deu, with the facility giving him the growth treatment he needed when he moved to Barca as a youngster. He certainly wouldn’t be the player he is today without the hospital’s help, and has never forgotten how it impacted his life.

Messi has helped finance said hospital in years prior, funding research and the training of Argentinian doctors at the facility.

And when he was informed of their latest project, the player did not hesitate to offer his support.

The construction of a new hospital annexed to the Sant Joan de Deu will be assisted by a project started by the Lionel Messi Foundation and the Barcelona Foundation. The facility will prioritise research into and treatment of child cancer, a disease which so far cannot be cured.

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There is no knowledge on what to do to avoid it either, and treatment is very pricey. But with the player and his foundation backing the €30m project, certain affected kids will have a hospital available that is designed just for them.

The player is also backing the social media hashtag #paralosvalientes, meaning #ForTheBrave, set up to promote donations and financial support. And after scoring in a match against Sevilla last month, he painted two lines into his face to symbolise his support.

To date, €4m has been received. And while it’s a great haul, there’s still a long way to go.


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Atletico Madrid Report Barcelona to FIFA After Learning an Approach Has Been Made for Griezmann

?Atletico Madrid have put a complaint in to FIFA after learning Barcelona approached star striker Antoine Griezmann.

The Frenchman has been heavily linked with a move to the Blaugrana in recent weeks, and it would appear there is truth to the reports with Atleti now taking action against the Spanish league leaders for trying to talk to Griezmann, as reported by ?MARCA.

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The 26-year-old, who recently got caught up in a race row for dressing up as a black basketballer, is under contract with the Colchoneros until June 2022, and the club will supposedly put the integrity of the the league being at stake in their complaint.

Atleti believe that whilst Barcelona genuinely want the player, the league leaders are trying to unsettle Griezmann and destabilise the rest of the dressing room as they try to fend off their challenge in La Liga.

Diego Simeone’s side are only six points behind Barca in second place and still haven’t lost, and Ernesto Valverde would like more breathing space.

It will be interesting to see how Atletico handle the situation, especially with Diego Costa available for registration in January following his move from Chelsea.

The Spaniard is returning to the club after a three-year stint in west London, and can finally play with the club’s transfer embargo now over. It could spell the end for Griezmann, who was a whisker away from leaving for Manchester United last summer.


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