just be happy

last night we won against valladolid, sealing a record 49 out 51 points for the league in 2012.  that’s our last game, and now it’s time for winter transfer rumors and all sorts of evaluations and critiques of the team’s performance.  it’s a time a loathe.

i admit i’m not a tactical genius, and i haven’t been a football fan all my life.  but i fell in love with this team because of what they stand for, and i always thought that was a lot of heart.  they play beautiful football, and it’s a joy to watch, but beyond that, they’ve just always come across as a family.  i always feel so bad when people criticize individual performances, and dismiss players’ contributions to the collective.  it is human nature, i guess, to keep on wanting more even when you already have more than enough.  but sometimes people treat the players like trading cards, ready to be exchanged for better ones in the blink of an eye.

if we were on the brink of relegation and some players were being blatantly lazy, i’d probably understand (or still not) — but we are performing magnificently, and it just makes me so sad to think that the staff and the players can read/hear/watch all those nasty things being said about them, and it’s just not fair compensation for what they have been giving us.  has “thank you” become too hard to say?  since 2008, these guys have been playing at such a high level, having so many matches and travelling very long distances.  they’ve overcome injuries, had their vacations cut short, put their bodies on the line.  it makes me sick that they can be so casually undervalued just because they make mistakes, most of which really did not cost us anything but a little pride and adrenaline.  they are people, and they are our team.  i for one am grateful and very happy.

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pressers and pick-me-ups

below are the press conferences of the previous 2 days, by el capita and the greatest defensive midfielder in the world.  transcripts are from martiperarnau.com, by carles nicolau.

puyi’s presser (dec 20)

Carles Puyol:  Seeing Tito with the will to fight gives us strength

Carles Puyol: Seeing Tito with the will to fight gives us strength

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dia muy triste

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twitter was awash with all sorts of emotions as the news of tito’s illness unfolded.  i was supposed to write something today about puyi, xavi and messi renewing their contracts + abidal being cleared to play.  but the universe has dealt us a cruel blow and put everything in harsh perspective.  there’s so much i want to say, but i feel so helpless.  i just want to share what has already been said; nothing from me now except Anims Tito 😥

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yesterday, the stars aligned

goooooolllll!!!!!!!!!!!

goooooolllll!!!!!!!!!!!

the universe gave us cules an early holiday present yesterday… actually, we got 3 major presents and several minor ones.  first, chelsea suffered a painful defeat to corinthians, and thus will not inherit the club world cup badge from us.  second, real madrid drew… at home… against espanyol… another bitter rival in the relegation zone.  third, we won at home against second-placers atleti and widened the gap to the top of the table.  and we didn’t simply win — we triumphed in spectacular fashion against a strong side.  that’s 46 out of 48 possible points, undefeated since the start of the season.  slow clap for tito, and thunderous applause for our mighty warriors.

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against the green

puyi is ready.

puyi is ready.

tito’s boys faced a very driven side sunday night, as they visited one of the club’s waterloo stadia, the benito villamarin.  betis always makes us work hard for the money, and it was no different during this weekend’s game.  the night was cold and the crowd was loud, but our guys pulled through — two records for messi, and one for the team.  not bad at all!

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coping

a few minutes before the end of the barca-benfica match, i was called to attend to a family emergency.  it didn’t end very well 😦  here’s my coping mechanism for now…

http://www.cuatro.com/deportes/futbol/champions/Carles_Puyol-Barcelona-futbol_2_1520430081.html

thank you, puyi.  anims leo, and felicidades pinto.

till our next match

a beautiful game

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serious spectators on the barça bench last night.

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of copas, captains and canteranos

u mad, puyi??

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just some photos and videos

stuff from the past few weeks i wasn’t able to include in my other posts 🙂

bleeding blaugrana

the club proudly featured their five catalan captains in a pictorial at the ciutat esportiva — (l-r) torras for futsal, egurrola for roller hockey, puyi for football, tomas for handball and navarro for basketball.

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Onze…

… is Catalan for 11.

the stuff of van gaal’s wildest dreams:
our mister and his historic eleven,
and the years when they entered our legendary farmhouse

The pitch at the Ciutat de Valencia became the first to witness a squad made entirely of blaugrana canteranos.  Eleven men educated in Barcelona’s academy successfully extended the lead over our eternal rival to eleven points.  It feels a little funny that no one’s really counting Atletico, who are hovering behind us by a mere three points and who have been having a really good winning streak.  But I’m as guilty as everyone else — relishing our lead over the blancos just feels too good 🙂

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