Barcelona legend Andres Iniesta swapped the turf of the Nou Camp for the day to try a very different sport: American football.
Proving there is a first time for everything, the product of La Masia battles takes on a new challenge in an advertising campaign of an online broker.
The new campaign was released to encourage the general public to ‘try something new’ and sees the small Spanish midfielder seemingly out of his depth engaging in a face off with a team of American football giants.
Iniesta who signed a two-year contract with the option of extending it to three is the new ambassador of the brand and spoke via Mundo Deportivo
He said: “
?Barcelona fans, however, will be hoping their captain doesn’t get too used to trying new things, with the prospect of linking up with new £142m man Philippe Coutinho on the horizon.
??Barcelona currently sit nine points clear at the top of La Liga and Iniesta will be looking to capture his ninth Spanish league title this year, to add to an already glittering career.
Barcelona goalkeeper Jasper Cillessen has admitted that he’s happy to warm the bench at Camp Nou while teammate Marc Andre ter Stegen continues his immaculate form between the sticks – admitting that the team’s success is more important than his own.
Despite being previously ?linked with a move to Newcastle this month, Cillessen seems content to only feature in Barca’s Copa del Rey matches this season, while Ter Stegen takes the league games as well as the Champions League.
And while many would question their position within the team in the Dutchman’s situation, the keeper recognises his teammate’s outrageous ability:
“Ter Stegen is having world-class performances and I accept it as it is. If it were not so, maybe I could ask why I do not play anymore, but at the moment things are like that.”
Cillessen says to @javiergiraldo: With the level Ter Stegen’s at, it would be crazy to hope to play more! If he wasn’t playing like he is, maybe I would be asking more questions, but he is and it is how it is https://t.co/TNmKthiPRM
— Samuel Marsden (@samuelmarsden) January 16, 2018
Players could understandably fall out with teammates with whom they are competing, but the calm head on Cillessen’s shoulders remains on very good terms with Ter Stegen, admitting that the two are constantly looking to help each other in training:
“Our relationship is good and the trainings with him are fun. We give advice and discuss details of the training, what he lived in Germany and me in Holland, the different ways of working, and always thinking about the best for the team.”
Wednesday night will see the Dutch stopper handed a rare opportunity as Barca travel to Espanyol in the first leg of the Copa del Rey quarter final. He’ll be looking to emmulate the same immaculate form as last season.
?Neymar may have to pay Barcelona a whopping €100m after the Paris Saint-Germain star allegedly broke an agreement over his earnings whilst playing in Catalonia.
Spanish news publication ?Marca understands that the Brazilian superstar shook hands with Barca president Josep Maria Bartomeu over a deal that would net him a not-too-shabby €100m after he penned a five-year contract with them in 2013.
Those terms came as Neymar joined La Blaugrana from Santos on 6th May, and seemed to imply that Barcelona would fork out the vast sum of cash to the 25-year-old based on a variety of bonuses in addition to the wage packet he would earn at Camp Nou.
The report, originally released by El Confidencial, was shown to authorities in Neymar’s homeland in November as part of the murky case that saw the forward and Barca become embroiled in a nasty spat over his world-record £200m transfer to PSG last summer.
The 2013 contract signed by Neymar revealed that his €100m deal would be based upon his salary, additional prize money for lifting titles and other bonus payments such as number of appearances and goals scored.
Barcelona’s manager Ernesto Valverde deserves loads of praise. He has made them better despite losing Neymar. He has also kept Messi sharp and effective. Even Suarez appears interested again.
— JJ. Omojuwa (@Omojuwa) January 15, 2018
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Now a stipulation in his Barca contract has come to light that suggests Neymar will have to pay back that €100m to the Catalan giants after he broke the terms of his agreement by moving to France’s capital six months earlier than the deal’s expiration date.
Neymar would have been home and dry if he had stayed until January 2018 but, thanks to his eye watering switch to Parc de Princes, will need to pay the monstrous fee back as compensation to his former side.
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That compensation deal was only thought to be worth around €40m but El Confidencial’s report will now lead to even more petty jibes and dragging of feet from Neymar and Barcelona as the latter looks to be reimbursed by their former megastar.
Barcelona full-back Jordi Alba has rubbed salt into the wounds of Real Madrid fans, after the Catalans’ victory over Real Sociedad coupled with Los Blancos’ home defeat against Villarreal saw Ernesto Valverde’s side go 19 points ahead of their rivals.
The Spaniard was on duty for the Catalan side as they roared back from a 2-0 deficit to defeat bogey team Real Sociedad on Sunday, with Paulinho, Luis Suarez and Leo Messi all getting on the score-sheet to complete a ?4-2 comeback.
The victory leaves Barca with a huge lead over fierce rivals and reigning La Liga champions Real Madrid, who fell 1-0 to Villarreal at Santiago Bernabeu on Saturday to further compound their disappointing campaign.
And speaking after the game, Alba noted that a 19-point gap would never be accepted by his club’s supporters, if they were the ones on the sour end.
Alba also explained why he thinks the La Liga giants are doing so well this season. Barca haven’t lost a single game under new boss Ernesto Valverde, despite losing Neymar over the summer, as well as having to play most of their matches without his replacement, Ousmane Dembele.
“The secret is the team,” he said.
Sociedad were probably the one team Real’s players were counting on to do them a solid, with La Blaugrana failing to beat the side at the
“We have known how to suffer here,” Alba added.
?Barcelona superstar Luis Suarez has spoken of the moment that he was reduced to tears upon discovering that the Catalan giants still wanted to sign him even after he was kicked out of the 2014 World Cup and later given a worldwide ban for biting Italy’s Giorgio Chiellini.
Having been no stranger to controversy following a deliberate handball at the previous World Cup in 2010, biting Otman Bakkal and Branislav Ivanovic, and racially abusing Patrice Evra, Suarez admitted to current team-mate Gerard Pique in a chat for The Players’ Tribune that he his dream move would be dead after what happened in that moment of madness in Brazil.
“After I did it I realized immediately [what I had done],” the Uruguayan explained.
“We scored our goal a few minutes after and I didn’t celebrate it as much as I usually would – the way everyone else celebrated it – because I was already thinking about the aftermath [of the bite].”
Despite interest, Suarez said he hadn’t actually started talking with Barça until the World Cup had begun, but there were suddenly fears his behaviour and the expected suspension that followed – ultimately four months after FIFA deliberation – would ruin everything.
“Because it was everything,” he commented. “In addition to thinking about the World Cup, and being able to fulfil my dream to come here to Barça – everything had gone overboard for me.
“And I think in the few days after that – before they kicked me out of the World Cup – that’s when I spoke with [Andoni Zubizarreta], and the president, and they told me to be calm because Barça still wanted me and … and I have no problem saying it, I cried.
“Because, they were accepting, and me going through what I did in that moment, and with the shit I had caused, it was complicated to trust in me. Truth is, Barça has been so good to me, and I will always be very grateful for that.”
In his very first season in Catalunya, Suarez won La Liga, Copa del Rey and Champions League honours to complete an historic second treble in the club’s history, as well as establishing the revered ‘MSN’ trio with Lionel Messi and Neymar.
He has won multiple further major honours with the club since and even took home the prestigious European Golden Shoe award in 2015/16 after netting 40 times in La Liga.
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