Ernesto Valverde

FC Barcelona

Messi on bench but Barcelona advance to last 16

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Turin (Italy) (AFP) – Lionel Messi started on the bench but Barcelona advanced to the Champions League last 16 on Wednesday and clinched top spot in Group D after drawing 0-0 with Juventus in Turin.

Last season’s finalists Juventus remain second in the group following the stalemate, a point ahead of third-place Sporting Lisbon, and can secure their qualification with victory at Olympiakos on December 5.

Messi on bench but Barcelona advance to last 16

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Turin (Italy) (AFP) – Lionel Messi started on the bench but Barcelona advanced to the Champions League last 16 on Wednesday and clinched top spot in Group D after drawing 0-0 with Juventus in Turin.

Last season’s finalists Juventus remain second in the group following the stalemate, a point ahead of third-place Sporting Lisbon, and can secure their qualification with victory at Olympiakos on December 5.

Barcelona, Chelsea reach Champions League last 16 as Manchester United lose

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Paris (AFP) – Barcelona and Chelsea progressed to the Champions League last 16 on Wednesday, but Jose Mourinho’s Manchester United must wait to seal their spot after a last-gasp 1-0 defeat in Basel.

Barcelona coach Ernesto Valverde rested Argentina star Lionel Messi in Turin, later introducing him as a second-half substitute as a 0-0 draw against Juventus sent the five-time European champions through as winners of Group D.

Barcelona, Chelsea reach Champions League last 16 as Manchester United lose

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Paris (AFP) – Barcelona and Chelsea progressed to the Champions League last 16 on Wednesday, but Jose Mourinho’s Manchester United must wait to seal their spot after a last-gasp 1-0 defeat in Basel.

Barcelona coach Ernesto Valverde rested Argentina star Lionel Messi in Turin, later introducing him as a second-half substitute as a 0-0 draw against Juventus sent the five-time European champions through as winners of Group D.

Valverde revisits defeat to prepare for Juventus clash

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Turin (Italy) (AFP) – Barcelona coach Ernesto Valverde admitted on Tuesday that he watched last season’s 3-0 defeat by Juventus “over and over” to prepare for their Champions League return to Turin on Wednesday.

Juventus beat Barcelona in the last eight thanks to a three-goal hammering at the Allianz Stadium and a goalless draw at the Camp Nou on their way to the final in Cardiff, where the Italians were beaten by Real Madrid.

Valverde revisits defeat to prepare for Juventus clash

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Turin (Italy) (AFP) – Barcelona coach Ernesto Valverde admitted on Tuesday that he watched last season’s 3-0 defeat by Juventus “over and over” to prepare for their Champions League return to Turin on Wednesday.

Juventus beat Barcelona in the last eight thanks to a three-goal hammering at the Allianz Stadium and a goalless draw at the Camp Nou on their way to the final in Cardiff, where the Italians were beaten by Real Madrid.

Barcelona appeal Pique ban, Suarez yellow

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Barcelona (AFP) – Barcelona announced on Sunday they will appeal yellow cards shown to Gerard Pique and Luis Suarez in Saturday’s 3-0 win at Leganes.

Unless his appeal is successful, Pique will miss next Sunday’s top of the table clash at Valencia.

“FC Barcelona informs that it has decided to appeal to the competition committee for the yellow cards shown to Gerard Pique and Luis Suarez during the course of Leganes-FC Barcelona,” Barca said in a statement.

Cries of ‘freedom’ as record-breaking Barcelona march on

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Madrid (AFP) – Barcelona continued their record-breaking start to a La Liga season by beating Sevilla 2-1 thanks to Paco Alcacer’s double on Saturday in an atmosphere at the Camp Nou marked by the political upheaval in Catalonia.

A huge Catalan flag and banners reading “justice” in Catalan and English were displayed before kick-off after eight ministers of the Catalan government deposed by Madrid were detained pending a possible trial for their roles in the drive for Catalan independence.

Alcacer double edges Barca past Sevilla

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Madrid (AFP) – Barcelona continued their record-breaking start to a La Liga season by beating Sevilla 2-1 thanks to Paco Alcacer’s double on Saturday in an atmosphere at the Camp Nou marked by the political upheaval in Catalonia.

A huge Catalan flag and banners reading “justice” in Catalan and English were displayed before kick-off after eight ministers of the Catalan government deposed by Madrid were detained pending a possible trial for their roles in the drive for Catalan independence.

‘Monstrous’ Messi to enter Barca’s 600 club

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Barcelona (AFP) – Lionel Messi will celebrate his 600th start for Barcelona on Saturday in what his manager Ernesto Valverde hails as “a monstrous” achievement.

The five-time Ballon d’Or winner becomes only the third player to reach the milestone for the Catalan club after ex-playmaker Xavi Hernandez (767 appearances) and the current captain Andres Iniesta (642).

‘Monstrous’ Messi to enter Barca’s 600 club

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Barcelona (AFP) – Lionel Messi will celebrate his 600th start for Barcelona on Saturday in what his manager Ernesto Valverde hails as “a monstrous” achievement.

The five-time Ballon d’Or winner becomes only the third player to reach the milestone for the Catalan club after ex-playmaker Xavi Hernandez (767 appearances) and the current captain Andres Iniesta (642).

Messi maintains under-par Barca’s lead over resurgent Valencia

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Madrid (AFP) – Barcelona recorded their best ever start to a La Liga season as coach Ernesto Valverde enjoyed a successful return to Athletic Bilbao thanks to goals from Lionel Messi and Paulinho in a 2-0 win on Saturday.

Valverde has now overseen 12 wins and a draw from his first 13 La Liga and Champions League matches as Barca reestablished their four-point lead at the top of the table over Valencia, who beat Alaves 2-1 earlier on Saturday.

Messi maintains under-par Barca’s lead over resurgent Valencia

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Madrid (AFP) – Barcelona recorded their best ever start to a La Liga season as coach Ernesto Valverde enjoyed a successful return to Athletic Bilbao thanks to goals from Lionel Messi and Paulinho in a 2-0 win on Saturday.

Valverde has now overseen 12 wins and a draw from his first 13 La Liga and Champions League matches as Barca reestablished their four-point lead at the top of the table over Valencia, who beat Alaves 2-1 earlier on Saturday.

Messi maintains under-par Barcelona’s lead over resurgent Valencia

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Madrid (AFP) – Barcelona’s relentless winning run continued as coach Ernesto Valverde enjoyed a successful return to Athletic Bilbao, goals from Lionel Messi and Paulinho securing a 2-0 victory at San Mames on Saturday.

Valverde has now overseen 12 wins and a draw from his first 13 La Liga and Champions League matches as Barca reestablished their four-point lead at the top of the table over Valencia, who beat Alaves 2-1 earlier on Saturday.

Messi maintains under-par Barcelona’s lead over resurgent Valencia

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Madrid (AFP) – Barcelona’s relentless winning run continued as coach Ernesto Valverde enjoyed a successful return to Athletic Bilbao, goals from Lionel Messi and Paulinho securing a 2-0 victory at San Mames on Saturday.

Valverde has now overseen 12 wins and a draw from his first 13 La Liga and Champions League matches as Barca reestablished their four-point lead at the top of the table over Valencia, who beat Alaves 2-1 earlier on Saturday.

Barcelona coach coy on Catalonia crisis

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Barcelona (AFP) – Barcelona coach Ernesto Valverde repeatedly batted away questions on the Catalonia crisis on Friday insisting it was not his role to enter the political fray.

With Catalonia’s regional parliament approving a declaration of independence dominating news Friday Valverde was preparing Barcelona for an away game at Athletic Bilbao in Spain’s La Liga.

Barcelona eyeing January move for Chelsea title winning defender?

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According to various press reports, Barcelona boss Ernesto Valverde is considering an approach in January to try and sign Chelsea wing back Marcos Alonso just eighteen months after he joined the blues.

I have to be honest here, not many eyebrows were raised when he signed for the club after having two mediocre attempts at Premier League football with Bolton and Sunderland.

Valverde calls for calm amid referendum chaos

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Barcelona (AFP) – Barcelona coach Ernesto Valverde has called for calm as his side host Las Palmas on Sunday amid heightened political tension in Catalonia as pro-secessionist groups forge ahead with a referendum on independence for the north-eastern region of Spain.

Outspoken central defender Gerard Pique joined the club this week in backing Catalonia’s right to self-determination in the midst of Spanish government crackdowns on what it sees as an illegal vote that violates Spain’s constitution.

Valverde calls for calm amid referendum chaos

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Barcelona (AFP) – Barcelona coach Ernesto Valverde has called for calm as his side host Las Palmas on Sunday amid heightened political tension in Catalonia as pro-secessionist groups forge ahead with a referendum on independence for the north-eastern region of Spain.

Outspoken central defender Gerard Pique joined the club this week in backing Catalonia’s right to self-determination in the midst of Spanish government crackdowns on what it sees as an illegal vote that violates Spain’s constitution.

Messi hits four as Barca maintain perfect start

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Madrid (AFP) – Lionel Messi added four more goals to his soaring early season tally as a much-changed Barcelona maintained their 100 percent start to La Liga by routing Eibar 6-1 on Tuesday.

Paulinho and Denis Suarez also netted for the second consecutive game as Barca stretched their lead at the top of La Liga to seven points over Real Madrid, who host Real Betis on Wednesday.

Messi hits four as Barca maintain perfect start

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Madrid (AFP) – Lionel Messi added four more goals to his soaring early season tally as a much-changed Barcelona maintained their 100 percent start to La Liga by routing Eibar 6-1 on Tuesday.

Paulinho and Denis Suarez also netted for the second consecutive game as Barca stretched their lead at the top of La Liga to seven points over Real Madrid, who host Real Betis on Wednesday.

Messi inspires Barcelona, PSG win Champions League opener

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Paris (AFP) – Lionel Messi netted twice in Barcelona’s convincing 3-0 victory over Juventus that kicked off their Champions League campaign in style, while Paris Saint-Germain, Manchester United and Chelsea also won big on Tuesday.

After a troubled summer, a home meeting with last season’s runners-up may not have been what Barcelona and their new coach Ernesto Valverde wanted, but Messi was at his brilliant best to give the Catalans the three points.

Messi inspires Barcelona, PSG win Champions League opener

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Paris (AFP) – Lionel Messi netted twice in Barcelona’s convincing 3-0 victory over Juventus that kicked off their Champions League campaign in style, while Paris Saint-Germain, Manchester United and Chelsea also won big on Tuesday.

After a troubled summer, a home meeting with last season’s runners-up may not have been what Barcelona and their new coach Ernesto Valverde wanted, but Messi was at his brilliant best to give the Catalans the three points.

Judge Barcelona, Juventus on results not transfers, coaches argue

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Barcelona (AFP) – Barcelona coach Ernesto Valverde warned against snap judgements on his side and Juventus’ Champions League aspirations despite losing key players in the transfer market.

The sides meet in their competition opener on Tuesday (1845 GMT) in a rematch of a quarter-final clash won 3-0 on aggregate by Juventus last season.

Judge Barcelona, Juventus on results not transfers, coaches argue

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Barcelona (AFP) – Barcelona coach Ernesto Valverde warned against snap judgements on his side and Juventus’ Champions League aspirations despite losing key players in the transfer market.

The sides meet in their competition opener on Tuesday (1845 GMT) in a rematch of a quarter-final clash won 3-0 on aggregate by Juventus last season.

Judge Barcelona, Juventus at season’s end: Valverde

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Barcelona (AFP) – Barcelona coach Ernesto Valverde warned against snap judgements on his side and Juventus’ Champions League aspirations despite losing key players in the transfer market.

The sides meet in their competition opener on Tuesday (1845 GMT) in a rematch of a quarter-final clash won 3-0 on aggregate by Juventus last season.

Dembele settled ahead of Barcelona debut, says Valverde

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Barcelona (AFP) – Young French forward Ousmane Dembele is “looking better every day”, Barcelona coach Ernesto Valverde said ahead of his debut on Saturday.

Dembele, 20, joined Barcelona for a Spanish record transfer fee of 105 million euros ($125 million) from Borussia Dortmund that could rise to 145m euros with add-ons.

9 Days For Barcelona Board To Salvage Reputation

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Tick-tock, tick-tock... nowhere in football is the transfer market clock counting down louder than at Barcelona. And no one is sweating more than Barcelona president Josep Bartomeu and his board of directors.

They have nine days to, in the words of one prominent Spanish radio journalist on Monday night, ‘stop making fools of themselves', save the club's summer and save their own jobs.

Barcelona football ‘not afraid’ as attacks overshadow La Liga start

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Barcelona (AFP) – Barcelona coach Ernesto Valverde called on supporters to show no fear by attending an emotional La Liga opener for his side in the wake of two terrorist attacks in Catalonia.

A huge security operation will be put in place for Sunday’s match against Real Betis (kick off 1815GMT) at the club’s 99,000 capacity Camp Nou after the attacks this week killed 14 people and left hundreds injured.

Barcelona seek Super Cup tonic to Neymar hangover

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Barcelona (AFP) – Barcelona host rivals Real Madrid in the first leg of the Spanish Super Cup on Sunday (2000GMT) badly in need of a morale-boosting win following the world record sale of Neymar to Paris Saint-Germain.

Despite banking 222 million euros ($261 million) for the Brazilian, Barca’s scattergun approach to finding a replacement has so far been unsuccessful with bids for Liverpool’s Philippe Coutinho and Ousmane Dembele of Borussia Dortmund so far rebuffed.

Barcelona seek Super Cup tonic to Neymar hangover

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Barcelona (AFP) – Barcelona host rivals Real Madrid in the first leg of the Spanish Super Cup on Sunday (2000GMT) badly in need of a morale-boosting win following the world record sale of Neymar to Paris Saint-Germain.

Despite banking 222 million euros ($261 million) for the Brazilian, Barca’s scattergun approach to finding a replacement has so far been unsuccessful with bids for Liverpool’s Philippe Coutinho and Ousmane Dembele of Borussia Dortmund so far rebuffed.

Neymar scores as Barcelona beat Manchester United 1-0

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Washington (AFP) – Neymar, serene amid a frenzy of transfer speculation, scored the first-half goal that gave Barcelona a 1-0 victory over Manchester United on Wednesday in an International Champions Cup friendly.

The Brazilian striker, reportedly pondering a 222-million euro ($256.

Barca manager Valverde dismisses talk of Neymar move

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New York (AFP) – Barcelona manager Ernesto Valverde swatted down talk of star striker Neymar departing for a world-record transfer to Paris Saint-Germain, dismissing “rumors” Friday and saying the squad wants him to stay.

Amid reports Neymar’s future at the Camp Nou is in doubt, Valverde says the Brazil international is beloved and wanted at Barca for years to come.

Barca manager Valverde dismisses talk of Neymar move

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New York (AFP) – Barcelona manager Ernesto Valverde swatted down talk of star striker Neymar departing for a world-record transfer to Paris Saint-Germain, dismissing “rumors” Friday and saying the squad wants him to stay.

Amid reports Neymar’s future at the Camp Nou is in doubt, Valverde says the Brazil international is beloved and wanted at Barca for years to come.

Football: Messi vows to do ‘best’ under Valverde

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Tokyo (AFP) – Barcelona star Lionel Messi shied away from making major promises for the coming season Thursday, pledging only to do his “best” under new coach Ernesto Valverde.

Messi said he was not familiar with Valverde’s style, but voiced cautious hope.

“Well, I say the exact same thing I say all the time,” he said at the team’s celebration of a new sponsorship deal with Japanese e-commerce giant Rakuten at its Tokyo headquarters.

Valverde vows to ‘revisit’ Barca’s tiki-taka

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Barcelona (AFP) – Newly-installed Barcelona coach Ernesto Valverde vowed Thursday to “deepen” and “revisit” the renowned slick passing game of the Catalan giants in a bid to lead the club to success in all possible competitions next season.

“I know the style because I played here” between 1998-2000, Valverde said at his first press conference after being named successor to Luis Enrique on a two-year contract with the option of a further year.

Valverde vows to ‘revisit’ Barca’s tiki-taka

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Barcelona (AFP) – Newly-installed Barcelona coach Ernesto Valverde vowed Thursday to “deepen” and “revisit” the renowned slick passing game of the Catalan giants in a bid to lead the club to success in all possible competitions next season.

“I know the style because I played here” between 1998-2000, Valverde said at his first press conference after being named successor to Luis Enrique on a two-year contract with the option of a further year.

Manchester United

Sergi Roberto will not be joining Manchester United

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New Barcelona manager Ernesto Valverde has ruled out any chance of Manchester United, or any other club, signing midfielder Sergi Roberto this summer. The 25-year-old had been strongly linked with a move to Old Trafford this summer despite becoming more... Continue Reading →

Thursday Kickoff: Barca confident in Neymar stay; Mourinho hints at Ibrahimovic return and more

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Neymar headlines Thursday's news while Jose Mourinho hinted a major star could return to Manchester United.

Barcelona head coach Ernesto Valverde insists Neymar is happy with the club despite continues links to Paris Saint-Germain. (REPORT)

In addition, Neymar and his father were clearedcriminal charges in a tax evasion case in Brazil.

The Rest

Gazidis: There Was Nobody To Replace Wenger With

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Arsenal chief executive Ivan Gazidis has finally admitted why Arsene Wenger was handed a new contract on the back of a hugely disappointing season. He could not find anyone better!

A statement that is even more mystifying considering that Barcelona found a manager Ernesto Valverde to replace Luis Enrique, why by the way is still available.