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The other side of the UEFA gala in Monaco
Group E features three teams that have all faced Barça before in continental competition
Thursday's draw for the UEFA Champions League put FC Barcelona in Group E along with Bayer Leverkusen, AS Roma and BATE Borisov all of which have faced the Catalans before in the round robin portion of the tournament in season past. Here's a look at Barça's continental history against all three rivals:
FC Barcelona has played six matches in the Champions League and two UEFA Cup duels against the German team. The numbers look good for Barça, with five wins, two defeats and a draw.
In the last game that FC Barcelona played against Bayer Leverkusen, Leo Messi was the star of the game in the second leg of the last 16, when he scored five goals at Camp Nou:
In European competition, despite Barça's long history with Roma, the two teams have only faced off in the second group stage. In the encounters in 2002 in the Champions League, current Barça boss Luis Enrique and Roma legend and current squad member Francesco Totti started in both matches.
If Barça's history with Roma is short, it's even shorter versus the team from Belarus. Nevertheless, it is more recent. The two teams met in the Champions League group stages in the season 2011/12 with both encounters ending in convincing wins for the blaugranes. A 5-0 win in Minsk was followed up by a 4-0 win at Camp Nou in which 12 players who had passed through La Masia featured.
FC Barcelona will begin the defence of their title in Group E following the draw on Thursday in Monaco
Bayer Leverkusen, AS Roma and BATE Borisov will be FC Barcelona's opponents in group E in this season's Champions League. Luis Enrique's team will begin the defence of their title and the road to Milan - the venue for this season's final - and their first challenge will be against the sides from Germany, Italy and Belarus in the group stages.
More details on Barça's opponents:
Barça have met Bayer three times in the Champions League era, but one game stands out above all the others. It was the round of 16 in 2012, when Barça walloped the Germans 7-1 in the second leg, with an amazing Leo Messi getting five goals. Bayer are playing in this season’s Champions League after beating Lazio in the playoffs, and are bidding to make it through to the last sixteen for the third time in a row.
A repeat of the Joan Gamper Trophy a few weeks ago, when Barça beat the Italians 3-0. Barça youth product Iago Falqué is in the Roma squad, as is Seydou Keita, who commented before the Gamper that it was nice to return to his former home in what was ultimately just a friendly. A Champions League match will be a very different story, and the first between these sides since 2001.
They may have won their national league nine times on the trot, but BATE have yet to make it any further than the Champions League group stage. They’re back for another try, and against Barça they’ll be hoping to do better than the 5-0 and 4-0 defeats they suffered the first time they met in 2011. And one of the men that will be helping them to do just that is former Barça man Aleksander Hleb, now back plying his trade in his home country.
The Argentine receives a total of 49 votes, beating Luis Suárez (3) and Cristiano Ronaldo (2) to the award
It had to be him. Leo Messi has been chosen as the UEFA Best Player in Europe and as such takes the award that he won back in 2011 in its first year of existence. The Argentine received 49 votes, beating Luis Suárez (3)and Cristiano Ronaldo (2) to the prize with Neymar finishing in fifth place.
The recognition is deserved after an exceptional season for the Barça number 10 in which he scored 58 goals in 57 competitive matches in 2015/16.
His goals, as always, were vital. He scored in the Vicente Calderón against Atlético to hand the blaugranes the league title and he found the net twice in the Copa del Rey final win over Athletic Club. Messi was exceptional in the Champions League final against Juventus, although he was unable to score the goal his performance deserved. Previously, in the semi-finals against Bayern Munich, his two goals were decisive in deciding the tie, one of which has been voted as the best of the Champions League season.
During the season Leo Messi surpassed Telmo Zarra’s league goalscoring record and also moved past the 400 mark in terms of goals in official matches in a Barça shirt. His current total stands at 415 and the man who has won four FIFA Ballon d’Ors has no intention of stopping there.
Leo Messi: I am here thanks to my team mates
With the gala concluded, the Argentine made it clear that the award was not only for him: “I am very happy with the prize, but it is thanks to my team mates, who are a big part of the reason that I am here. Luis Suárez [also nominated] and I are representatives of the dressing room, but neither of us would be here without them.”
“I am convinced that I depend more on the team than they depend on me. If we didn’t have such a good team, we would not have been able to win all that we have.”
“It was an incredible year for everyone. We worked very hard to achieve it. We were a united dressing room who had the confidence to put in a marvellous year.”
“The group that we have is difficult but we knew that because there are plenty of quality teams. We just want it to start,” added the Barça number 10.
'It’s ten years now that we have been at the forefront of European Football and to receive recognition for that is very satisfying,' explained the president
The FC Barcelona president Josep Maria Bartomeu revealed that in Monaco there was a “great Barça atmosphere”. The tribute to the Club for its five Champions League wins with the presence of Andoni Zubizarreta, Juliano Belletti, Carles Puyol, Éric Abidal and Andrés Iniesta, the awards of UEFA Best Player in Europe and Best Goal of the Champions League for Leo Messi and the award for Save of the Season for Ter Stegen meant there was a blaugrana tinge to proceedings at the draw.
“I am very happy. UEFA have paid tribute to Barça and its fans, something we have been working and fighting towards for a long time. It’s ten years now that we have been at the forefront of European Football and to receive recognition for that is very satisfying,” declared Bartomeu.
The Barça president also gave his thoughts on the draw that saw Barça placed in Group E alongside Bayer Leverkusen, AS Roma and BATE Borisov: “It’s fine, it is an interesting group for Barça fans.” Nevertheless, he added that “nothing is easy” and that “it will be hard work” to get through to the knock out stages of the Champions League.
UEFA paid tribute on Thursday to FC Barcelona’s five victories in the Champions League. During the gala for the draw for the group stage of this season’s competition in which Leo Messi was also awarded the prize for Best Player of the Year, there was recognition for the Club as they now have earned the UEFA ‘Badge of Honour’, awarded to teams who have won the competition on five separate occasions or three consecutive occasions.
There was a Barça representative for each of the trophies won: Juliano Belletti, Carles Puyol, Éric Abidal and Andrés Iniesta, the latter taking the stage with the famous trophy following on from the blaugranes’ most recent win in 2015. The other four representatives played a part in the draw for the group phase of the 2015/16 competition.
A decade of dominance
Of the five win in the Champions League, a total of four have been won in the last decade. Since 2006, FC Barcelona have been the dominant force in European Football. Aside from those four victories in the continent’s most important club competition, a total of three European Super Cups and two World Club Cups have to be added. In total, nine trophies in ten years, their nearest rival Sevilla have won five in that time.
In their recent UEFA Super Cup victory in Tbilisi over Sevilla, FC Barcelona wore a logo on their left sleeve in honour of their five Champions League successes.
Users of the UEFA official website hand first prize to the Argentinian for his amazing finish in last season's semi-final first leg
Leo Messi’s brilliant second goal against Bayern Munich in the first leg of the Champions League semi-final was just one of many occasions when the Argentinian has stunned the world. An online vote by users of the official UEFA website has named the work of art, in which he leaves Boateng on the floor before cheekily chipping Bayern keeper Neuer, the best of the 20014/15 edition of the tournament.
Messi’s goal beat nine other candidates, including one against PSG scored by his Barça colleague Neymar Jr. And there was a double reason to celebrate, because Marc-André ter Stegen is also to be honoured for the best save of the 2014/15 Champions League.
Leo Messi finished as one of the three joint top goalscorers in last season’s Champions League, tied on ten goals with Neymar Jr and Real Madrid’s Cristiano Ronaldo. And he’s also been shortlisted for the UEFA Best Player in Europe award, a title he already won in 2011. This year’s winner will be announced before the Champions League draw in Monaco on Thursday.
The German keeper's double intervention against Bayern Munich last season voted the best of the 2014/15 Champions League by users of the official UEFA website
FC Barcelona won the Champions League in amazing style last season, and in recognition of that, the awards are flooding in. And the latest of these goes to Marc-André ter Stegen, winner of the UEFA Save of the Season trophy for his dramatic intervention just before half-time in the second leg of the semi-final against Bayern Munich.
It was the 40th minute, and Barça were under serious pressure as Bayern sought to fight their way back into the match following two goals from Neymar. A fine move from Thiago Alcántara ended with the ball at the feet of Lewandowski, who struck it perfectly from the middle of the area. Ter Stegen managed to get a hand to the ball, but not enough to prevent it from continuing to head goal-ward. But just in time, and after outstretching his body in an almost impossible manner, the German managed to clear the ball from the goal-line, much to the dismay of the home fans who had already started celebrating a goal.
This stunning piece of goalkeeping was one of ten saves nominated for the award, but it’s the Barça stopper who most impressed users of www.uefa.com, with efforts from Neuer of Bayern and Buffon of Juventus finishing second and third.
On Thursday 27 August from 9pm CET, tickets will be exclusively available for members, and from Friday 28 for the general public
On Thursday 27 August from 9pm CET, tickets for FC Barcelona’s Champions League group stage matches at the Camp Nou against Bayer Leverkusen, Roma and BATE Borisov will go on sale.
The first 24 hours will be exclusively for members only, who also get a 20% discount on the original ticket price. Tickets can then be purchased by the general public from Friday 21 August, at 9pm CET.
Both members and the general public can only buy a maximum of six tickets per person. Tickets during the first few days will be available solely on the official website, www.fcbarcelona.com and, from next week, will be sold via the club’s regular channels.
Additional tickets for each Champions League match will depend on the release of seats by members through the Seient Lliure system.
Following Thursday’s draw in Monaco, Barça’s first Champions League home match will be against Bayer Leverkusen on 29 September. The Catalans will then host BATE Borisov on Matchday Four and finally Roma in the penultimate group match.
President Josep Maria Bartomeu and captain Andres Iniesta are among those attending the event on behalf of the club
Lionel Messi and Luis Suárez are nominees for the UEFA Best Player in Europe Award
FC Barcelona will be one of the main protagonists at this Thursday’s UEFA gala in Monaco. The event will include the draw for the 2015/16 Champions League groups, the Best Player in Europe Award as well as the Best Goal and Save of the Season, plus a special recognition award. UEFA will also pay tribute to Barça for winning their fifth Champions League title in June.
A number of the club’s representatives will travel to the Principality for the gala, which will begin at around 5.45pm CET. Lionel Messi and Luis Suárez are among the candidates for the Best Player in Europe Award, Messi and Neymar are up for the best goal prize while Marc-André ter Stegen is a nominee for the best save.
The Barça team making the journey will be led by president Josep Maria Bartomeu and three players: Messi, Suárez and club captain Andrés Iniesta. Also travelling will be director of professional sports Albert Soler and director of football administration Raul Sanllehí. In addition, Andoni Zubizarreta, Carles Puyol, Éric Abidal and Juliano Belletti will be there as representatives of Barça’s past Champions League successes.
After the gala, the winner of the UEFA Best Player in Europe Award will appear before the journalists from 54 different countries who voted. Finally, the Barcelona team will depart from Nice on a private flight which is expected to arrive in Barcelona at 10.00pm CET.
Here is FC Barcelona’s travel plan for the UEFA gala in Monaco (all times CET):
12.30pm (to be confirmed): Departure of private flight to Nice.
2.00pm: Arrival in Monaco.
From 5.45pm to 7.00pm: UEFA gala at the Grimaldi Forum in Monaco and the draw for the Champions League groups.
7.30pm: Press conference with the winner of the UEFA Best Player in Europe Award, exclusively for the media that voted.
8.15pm: Return flight from Nice.
10.00pm: Arrival in Barcelona.
Since the Champions League group stage was extended to 32 teams, the Catalans have been in pot number one sixteen times
FC Barcelona are one of the top-seeded teams in this week’s Champions League draw. But that’s nothing new. Since the group stage was expanded to 32 teams in 1999/00, the Catalans have always been among the eight highest ranked clubs, apart from in the 2003/04 season when they played in the UEFA Cup.
This season the seeding system has been changed. The honour no longer goes to the clubs with the highest UEFA coefficient, but instead to the champions of the leagues with the highest coefficients. That means that some of the clubs that are typically among the top seeds, such as Arsenal and Real Madrid, miss out on a place in the coveted pot number one.
The eight seeds on Thurday in Monaco will be Barça, Chelsea, Bayern, Juventus, Benfica, PSG, Zenit and PSV. It’s a completely new experience for the latter three, while Juventus have not been top seeded since the 2003/04 season.
Being one of the top seeds seems to be an important factor in the Champions League. In the last 16 years, 56% of them have ended up winning their group, and only 14% have been knocked out. And 12 of the last 16 European champions were one of the eight seeds at the start of the group stage. That’s great news for Barça, who have been top seeded more than any other club!
Members and the general public can buy any of the three ticket packs to see FC Barcelona games at the Camp Nou via the club website
The club is offering a wide range of ticket packages for football matches played at the stadium until the halfway stage of the Liga season on January 20. Three different types of pack are on offer this season, which can suppose discounts of up to 55% on the cost of buying tickets separately. The packs can be bought in advance and offer the flexibility to be able to pick the games you want and whenever you want.
Both members and the general public can buy these packs from the club website at www.fcbarcelona.com.
Gold 3 Pack
Buy two tickets and watch a third match for free. Get tickets for three matches chosen from all of the games played at the Camp Nou until January 20. Includes all games until that date in the first half of La Liga, the Champions League group stage and the Copa del Rey.
Non-season ticket holding members can buy this pack from 105 euros. For the general public, the ‘Gold 3 Pack’ costs from 133 euros.
Silver 3 Pack
With this pack, you also buy tickets for one match and get another free for a different match. The games included in this offer are the Liga fixtures against Levante, Las Palmas, Eibar, Real Sociedad, Deportivo and Granada, plus the Copa del Rey rounds of 32 and 16.
Non-season ticket holding members can buy this pack from 75 euros. For other groups, this pack can be purchased from 94 euros.
With this pack, you can buy a ticket for seven matches chosen from all of the games played at the Camp Nou until January 20, with a discount of as much as 55% in the case of members. Offer includes all games until that date in the first half of La Liga, the Champions League group stage and the Copa del Rey.
Non-season ticket holding members can buy this pack from 199 euros. And for other groups it can be purchased from 244 euros.
Conditions for the purchase of these ticket packs:
- No pack of tickets includes the FCB v R. Madrid match
- Capacity always subject to availability of tickets for the match in question at the moment that the ticket is collected.
- The pack only allows for one ticket per match.
- One member may only buy the same pack once, but may purchase other different types of pack.
- The purchase of packs by members is only valid for adult members.
- Collection of tickets by members is personal. They shall be required to show identification in the form of membership card or national ID. If the member cannot come to collect the tickets, the person doing so must bring the member’s original national ID (not a photocopy).
Ter Stegen among 10 nominees for best save of Champions League season 2014/15
The nominations were made by the Football and Technical Observers Committee at UEFA in conjunction with staff at UEFA.COM
Up until 25 August football fans can vote for the best goal and best save from last season’s Champions League on the UEFA official website. Europe’s governing body of football have opened up voting to the public and three of the candidates are from FC Barcelona: Leo Messi and Neymar are amongst the finalists for best goal of the season whilst Marc-André ter Stegen is one of the ten nominees for best save of the season.
The goal selected by Leo Messi was the one he scored in the 2-0 win over Bayern Munich at Camp Nou in the first leg of the semi-finals, the famous strike where he leaves Boateng for dead and then lifts the ball over Neuer.
The other blaugrana goal is the one scored by Neymar following some great work by Andrés Iniesta against PSG . It was the second goals of the first leg of the quarter-finals at Camp
Ter Stegen nominated
The save that sees Ter Stegen amongst the ten nominees is his double efforts against Bayern Munich in the Allianz Arena. It came in the 40th minute of the match with the German keeper saving from Lewandowski and then scrambling back to clear the ball off the line, allowing Barça to retain their lead at half time.
The three members of the famous trident are all among the ten players shortlisted for a prize won by Messi in 2011 and Iniesta in 2012. The winner will be announced before the Champions League draw on August 27
Leo Messi, Neymar Jr and Luis Suárez, winners of the Champions League in Berlin, have been included among the ten candidates for the UEFA Best Player in Europe Award. The trio of Barça strikers have been named along with Buffon, Pirlo, Pogba, Arturo Vidal and Tévez (Juventus), Hazard (Chelsea) and Cristiano Ronaldo (Real Madrid).
This list will be narrowed down to three names, to be announced on August 12, before the name of the overall winner will be revealed on August 27 at the Champions League group stage draw in Monaco.
Leo Messi already won this award in 2011 and Andrés Iniesta did so a year later in 2012. Franck Ribery and Cristiano Ronaldo have won the last two editions of an award that this year is being presented for the fifth time.
After winning La Liga on 17 May and conquering the Copa del Rey thirteen days later, Barça completed the Treble with the Club's fifth Champions League title on 6 June
On 6 June, right around 10.30pm CET at the Olympiastadion in Berlin, FC Barcelona wrote a new page in the history of football by winning the Club's fifth Champions League title and unprecedented second Treble.
First to fall
The road to the Treble began on 17 May at the in Vicente Calderón when Barça won 1–0 on Lionel Messi's solitary goal to mathematically claim the La Liga title with one game still to play.
* Together, unstoppable! See the special section for the La Liga champions, here.
King of Cups
Then on 30 May, Athletic Club and FC Barcelona met in the Spanish Cup Final for the third time in six years, this time at Camp Nou. Messi opened the scoring on 20 minutes with one of the most dazzling sequences of his career and Neymar made it 2–0 sixteen minutes later. Athletic pulled one back, but Messi's second goal on 73 minutes closed the door and handed the Catalans their 27th Copa del Rey, made even more special since the match was played at home. * Copa del Rey Final, special section, here.
On 6 June at the Olympiastadion, both Juventus and Barça were harbouring Treble hopes, but the Catalans came out on top. Rakitic scored on four minutes but Juventus equalised with a second-half Morata goal. But Luis Suárez finished a rebound from a Messi shot that was saved by Buffon, and then Neymar clinched it in added time, 3–1.
FC Barcelona, Uefa Champions League Winners... por <a href="http://www.dailymotion.com/fcbarcelona"
We've put together a special section on fcbarcelona.com as a tribute to the recent historic accomplishments of FC Barcelona
The 2014/15 season is history. Now that the month of July has rolled in and brought with it the 2015/16 preseason, we take a look back at perhaps the greatest season in FC Barcelona history. The team will forever be remembered as having won the Club's unprecedented second Treble, and we at www.fcbarcelona.com have created a special section to bring together the 2014/15 season's historic and memorable achievements, all under one roof.
We pick the key moments from FC Barcelona's successful quest to win the trophy for the fifth time
Barça won the Champions League the hard way, beating the holders of all the major European league titles en route to victory. PSG, Manchester City and Bayern Munich were all disposed of before Serie A Juventus were added to the list in the final. We pick five of the most outstanding moments as the Catalans won the trophy for the fifth time in their history:
1. Winning start against APOEL
The 2014/15 campaign began with a tougher test than many had expected against Cypriot outfit APOEL. Piqué got the only goal in Luis Enrique’s first European game in charge. Ter Stegen, Munir El Haddadi, Sergi Samper and Sandro also debuted in the competition that day.
2. Defeat at Parc des Princes
Barça hadn’t lost all season until the trip to Paris. The 3-2 defeat meant PSG took over at the top of the Group F table. Xavi Hernández set a new record for appearances in the Champions League, 143, an honour that until then had been held by Ryan Giggs.
3. First goal for Suárez and new record for Messi
Luis Suárez, back from suspension following an incident at the World Cup, scored his first official goal in a Barça shirt to open the scoring in Nicosia. Messi then added a second to become the all-time leading goalscorer in the Champions League with 72 goals.
4. Back on top
Barça beat PSG 3-1 in the final group match to qualify as group winners for the eighth season in a row. Ibrahimović put the Parisians into an early lead, but Messi and Neymar had turned things around by half-time and Luis Suárez settled things in the second half.
5. Ter Stegen saves Sergio Agüero penalty
Barça were winning 1-0 against Manchester City at the Camp Nou after already beating the Premiership champions 2-1 at the Etihad. But with 12 minutes to go, City were thrown a lifeline when they were awarded a penalty. Ter Stegen saved Kun Agüero’s spot kick and that was game over.
6. Messi nutmegs Milner
Lionel Messi never stops amazing the world with his stunning ball skills. Manchester City’s James Milner was on the receiving end of this cheeky nutmeg, which left the Englishman flailing on the floor.
7. And Luis Suárez does the same to David Luiz. Twice!
Barça beat PSG in the quarter finals. Neymar scored the first off a fine Messi assist, but the night belonged to Luis Suárez. The Uruguayan slipped the ball through the legs of Brazilian David Luiz not once but twice before finding the net.
8. Messi runs riot against Bayern
With two stunning goals in the last twenty minutes, the Argentinian ace was the hero of the first leg against the Bundesliga champions. The Bayern defence was powerless to stop him. Messi’s lightning run left Prince Boateng floored as he scored his first and the way he lifted the ball over Neuer’s head to score his second was absolute class.
9. Xavi reaches 150 games in Champions League
Luis Enrique sent Xavi on in the 75th minute at the Allianz Arena, and the midfielder thus became the first player ever to make it to 150 games in the Champions League. A new record for the Barça icon.
10. Juventus beaten and champions again
Barça finally secured their fifth continental crown at the Olympiastadion in Berlin with a 3-1 victory over Juventus. Rakitic opened the scoring and although the Italians equalised, the Catalans marched on to be worthy winners of the competition.
FC Barcelona are among the 22 teams that go straight into the group stage, while 56 other clubs will battle for the remaining places - the draw on Monday 22 June sets it all in motion
With FC Barcelona’s victory in the final of the UEFA Champions League in Berlin still fresh in the mind, attention is already turning to next season’s edition of Europe’s premier club competition. It all starts on June 30, with the first qualifying round, and won’t end until May 28 when the San Siro in Milan is the venue for the 2016 Final.
Barça are among the 22 teams that for different reasons are already through to the all-important group stage. They will also be one of the seeds following the introduction of the new rule that the winners of the seven highest ranked leagues in Europe will be the top seeds, the others being Bayern, Chelsea, Benfica, PSG, Juventus and Zenit. These seven were to be joined by the defending champions. But that side is Barça, who are already seeded as Spanish Liga champions. The extra place should instead go to the beaten finalists. However, Juventus are also already seeded after winning Italy’s Serie A, so the winners of the eighth highest ranked league in Europe, PSV of Holland, go into pot number one.
La Liga will also be represented in the group stage by Real Madrid and Atlético Madrid, as well as Sevilla, who have become the first beneficiaries of the new rule that awards a berth to the winners of the previous season’s Europa League. None of these teams can be drawn in the same group as Barça.
The other eleven teams that go straight into the groups are Manchester City, Arsenal, Wolfsburg, Borussia Monchengladbach, Roma, Porto, Lyon, Dynamo Kyiv, Gent, Galatasaray and Olympiacos.
Ready for first draw
The remaining 56 teams will be playing a series of qualifying rounds to decide the ten clubs that will join the previous 22 in the draw to be held in Monaco on August 27.
The draws for the first two qualifying rounds will take place on June 22 and from here the teams will be whittled down to fifteen, who will be joined by Valencia, Manchester United, Bayer Leverkusen, Sporting Lisbon and Lazio in the final play-off round.
Best goal celebrations of the 2014-15 season
A look at how each player fared in eight key categories in the treble winning season
FC Barcelona have just completed one the most glorious of their 115 seasons, winning both the major domestic trophies and adding their fifth Champions League title as well. Here’s a break-down of how each of the first team members, plus the B team players that helped out now and again, fared overall in the three different competitions in eight key statistic categories.
Two goals each from Rakitic and Messi, along with another from Suárez made the list, voted on by UEFA
The Union of European Football Associations (UEFA) has announced its list of the ten best goals of the 2014/15 Champions League, half of which were scored by FC Barcelona. According to the organisation, two goals each from Ivan Rakitic and Lionel Messi, and another courtesy of Luis Suárez, were among the worthiest of the tournament, which ended with Barça's triumph over Juventus in the 6 June Final in Berlin, Germany.
The other half of the list are goals from the Real Madrid strikers Cristiano Ronaldo and Karim Benzema, Borussia Dortmund's Marco Reus, Bayern Munich's Robert Lewandowski and Porto's Vincent Aboubakar. Here's the list, including the game in which the goal was scored.
1). Cristiano Ronaldo (Liverpool 0–3 Real Madrid, 22/10/14)
2). Ivan Rakitic (Juventus 1–3 FC Barcelona, 06/06/15)
3). Lionel Messi (FC Barcelona 3–0 Bayern Munich, 06/05/15)
4). Luis Suárez (PSG 1–3 FC Barcelona, 15/04/15)
5). Ivan Rakitic (FC Barcelona 1–0 Manchester City, 18/03/15)
6). Marco Reus (Galatasaray 0–4 Borussia Dortmund, 22/10/14)
7). Karim Benzema (Real Madrid 5–1 Basel, 16/09/14)
8). Lionel Messi (PSG 3–2 FC Barcelona, 30/09/14)
9). Robert Lewandowski (Bayern Munich 6–1 Porto, 21/04/15)
10). Vincent Aboubakar (Porto 4–0 Basel, 10/03/15)
Posa’t a prova amb 13 preguntes, una per partit, sobre el títol assolit pel FC Barcelona a Berlín
Ter Stegen, Piqué, Mascherano, Alba, Rakitic, Busquets, Iniesta, Messi, Suárez and Neymar are chosen for the UCL squad of the season
Ten of the players chosen in the UEFA Technical Observers' best UEFA Champions League squad 2014/15 represent FC Barcelona. This Thursday, uefa.com published an infographic of the full team. Ter Stegen, Piqué, Mascherano, Jordi Alba, Rakitic, Busquets, Iniesta, Messi, Suárez and Neymar made the list. Here's a look at what they did to merit their selection:
Marc-André ter Stegen
The German played in the Champions League and the Spanish Cup this season. Against European competition he conceded 11 goals in 13 games (0.85 per game). One of the highlights was when ter Stegen stopped Kun Aguero's penalty kick in the return leg of the last 16. In the Final, ter Stegen was key in overcoming the pressure of Juventus.
Piqué scored Barça's first goal in the 2014/15 Champions League against APOEL. Beyond that, the centre-back shined as the leader of the defence. Playing in 11 of the 13 games, he was outstanding in the aerial game and precise on the outlet.
With 12 appearances in the 13 games, Mascherano was a stalwart for the Barça defence and, occasionally, in midfield. He was fourth in passes completed in the tournament.
The ever-present left-back in Luis Enrique's schemes brought defensive consistency and offensive depth, like on Barça's first goal in Berlin. Alba was eight in passes completed in the tournament
The centre half-back was a regular in Barça'a midfield backbone. Busquets gave the team balance and circulated the ball with speed and accuracy. He was a key in the battle for midfield at the Olympiastadion Berlin.
The Croatian was a machine. Tactically perfect, helping out everywhere, and technically superb, he also contributed two decisive goals — in the return leg versus Manchester City (1-0) and the first goal of the Final against Juventus (1-3).
The emblem of the Barcelona midfield. His play at Camp Nou against PSG that ended with a goal from Neymar made headlines around the world. In the Final he gave an authentic exhibition. Despite being doubtful for the Final, he assisted the first goal and was chosen as the MVP of the game.
The only Barça outfield player to appear in all 13 matches in the Champions League. Messi scored 10 goals and had six assists. He was the top scorer of the tournament for the fifth time, this time tied with Cristiano Ronaldo and Neymar. He altered the first leg of the semi-finals against Bayern with two genius plays and took part in all three goals in the Final.
Despite missing the first three games of the competition, Suárez played the ten remaining and scored seven goals. His best performances were at the Etihad and Parc des Princes, where he scored two goals. In the Final, he scored the game-winner.
One of the three co-scoring leaders of the 2014/15 Champions League, Neymar led the tournament in fouls received, with 39. His goals clinched the ties with PSG and Bayern with two goals in each return leg. He scored the third and final goal in Berlin.
The other side of the UEFA Champions League Final
Ter Stegen, Piqué, Mascherano, Alba, Rakitic, Busquets, Iniesta, Messi, Suárez and Neymar
Ten of the players chosen in the UEFA Technical Observers' Best UEFA Champions League Squad 2014/15 represent FC Barcelona, with five Juventus men making the cut
A collection of the finest six-second clips of a wonderful evening for fans and players alike
The evening of June 7 was the time to celebrate the historic conquest of the Liga-Cup-Champions League treble. Here are some of the highlights in Vine format:
1. Dani Alves with the fans
2. Neymar, Messi and Suárez share hamburgers
3. Neymar's dance
4. Messi during the parade
5. The party never stops!
6. Barcelona flooded with fans
A colourful light show accompanied by music and euphoric players caps a historic season for FC Barcelona
By all measures, it was a proper party to cap a record season for FC Barcelona. The team arrived at Camp Nou after a majestic parade through the streets of Barcelona that brought together thousands of fans to celebrate the La Liga, Spanish Cup and Champions League titles attained after ten months of competition.
A fabulous intro with children going to bed and dreaming of Barça, videos showing the best goals of the season, and a colourful laser light show, set to music that wowed both the 70,000 attendees assembled at the stadium and the team out on the pitch.
One by one, public address announcer Manel Vich presented the members of the staff and the players, with Messi, Sergio, Iniesta and Xavi, the four captains, coming out last. The ceremony lacked only one player — the goalkeeper Claudio Bravo who, on Thursday, will begin the Copa América.
Down on the field, Luis Enrique was the first to address the fans, followed by Xavi, acting as emcee.
There were words to suit everyone: from Iniesta and Messi transmitting their satisfaction to the euphoria unleashed by Pique, the excitement of Alves, Pedro's perfect Catalan and Ter Stegen's Spanish.
Close to midnight, the team ended the celebration with a final victory lap and an impressive fireworks show.
In speeches during the treble celebration, the coach and players thank the fans for their support throughout the season; players assure fans they're hungry for more
After treble-winners FC Barcelona arrived at Camp Nou, coach Luis Enrique Martínez, shielded by "three Cups as shiny as three suns" and cheered by tens of thousands of fans who came to the stadium, had words of thanks for all those present. "We all know that it has been difficult and we had to suffer to get here. We asked to supports us when the chips were down and you delivered. We are very grateful because with you we are stronger and we have proved it," he said.
In addition, the coach wanted to make another appeal, as he did three weeks ago, during the celebration of the league title: "We ask again that you stay close to the team. I hope they'll make history again, because the hunger and ambition of these players knows no limits."
The players' turn
But Luis Enrique was not the only one who took the microphone to address the fans. The coach gave way to the captain who, in his farewell, was the master of ceremonies, and called on his teammates to give some words. Here are the highlights of what they had to say:
Xavi: "We have the treble. I'm going to miss you all a lot."
Iniesta: “I just want to say I'm very proud to form a part of this Club.”
Messi: "You wanted all three, right? Well you've got all three right here!"
Alves: "I'm one of you! Thanks a lot!"
Piqué: “I swear I never thought that this would happen again, but it did!"
Neymar: “I've only got two things to say: visca el Barça and visca Catalunya!”
Sergio: "This team has made history and we want more. We won't stop!"
Jordi Alba: "Today's the happiest day of my career."
Rakitic: “Impressive. Thanks for making me feel at home.”
Ter Stegen: “It isn't easy for me to speak Spanish so I only want to say I'm very happy to have won the treble. Thanks!"
A video reminder of FC Barcelona's triumphant march towards European glory
Xavi lifted the Champions League trophy at the Olympiastadion, Berlin on Saturday night to top off what has been a truly remarkable campaign for the Catalan club. Luis Enrique and his team won the title the hard way, beating the champions of all of Europe’s biggest leagues en route.
In the group stages, they faced the champions of Holland, France and Cyprus, namely Ajax, PSG and APOEL. First up in the knockout stage were Premiership champions Manchester City, who Barça beat 3-1 on aggregate. In the quarter finals they met PSG once again, putting the Ligue 1 title holders out to the tune of a 5-1 aggregate victory. The semi-finals matched them with Bundesliga giants Bayern Munich, and a tremendous display saw them through to the final, where Serie A champions Juventus awaited. The Italians were beaten 3-1 in Berlin, and a historic treble was completed. What a season!
Barça's second treble and fifth Champions League title makes headlines from Buenos Aires to Berlin
All over the world on Sunday morning, groggy-eyed international readers woke up, got a cup of coffee, and went for either their favourite newspaper or electronic device. Whether they were glancing at a front page or a home page, one piece of news was nearly ubiquitous — FC Barcelona’s historic victory in the UEFA Champions League.
It is rare to see a single sporting event make front-page news on multiple continents, but that’s exactly what happened on 7 June 2015, as the Catalan club’s record-breaking Saturday evening had deep appeal from Berlin to Buenos Aires.
Argentina lauded Lionel Messi, Brazil cited the role of Neymar, and scores of other outlets unanimously hailed the team’s unprecedented achievements.
Here’s a closer look at what several of the world’s most influential papers had to say:
La Vanguardia (Catalonia) — FC Barcelona’s hometown newspaper used the entire front page for an image of Messi kissing the Cup with the title, “Barça of Prodigies.” The subtitle read: “The blaugranes win the Champions League 3–1 over a combative Juventus and conquer their second treble.”
El País (Spain) — The Madrid-based leading newspaper on the Iberian Peninsula, not exactly a bastion of pro-Barça news, featured a prominent image of Xavi Hernández lifting the Cup. “Barça conquer their fifth,” it said, adding, “The blaugranes close out a magical season by taking the Champions League as well after vanquishing Juventus (3–1) in an exciting Final.”
Corriere della Sera (Italy) — “A stellar Barça switch off Juve’s dream,” was how the Italian daily called it.
La Stampa (Italy) — Juventus’ home paper, the Turin-based daily, was humble in defeat: “A warrior-like Juve not enough against Barça.”
Die Zeit (Germany) — “Such wonderful football,” lauded the Hamburg-based weekly, contrasting the Final with the recent scandals engulfing FIFA and declaring that Barça and Juve brought football back for “an evening of dignity and class.”
L’Equipe (France) — In a country where the UEFA Champions League Final went up against the French Open men’s and women’s finals at Roland Garros, the sports daily was unequivocal: “The coronation of a dynasty,” while adding that “Juventus were close to shaking off the best team of the decade.”
Clarín (Argentina) — It was no surprise that the Buenos Aires-based daily newspaper praised the figure of their beloved countryman: “Historic: Messi tops among Argentinians with most titles.”
Olé (Argentina) — This national sports daily further extolled the greatness of Messi, pictured holding the Cup aloft. "Another one! Another one!" ran the headline, while adding a touch of detail: "Barça beat Juve 3–1 in a fantastic final. Messi gets 24th title and 4th Champions League. He and [Carlos] Tévez force two goals. Now the Argentinian stars must move their focus to the Copa América."
O Globo (Brazil) — As was the case with Messi, the Brazilian media had words of praise for Neymar, who scored the final goal of the game in injury time: “Neymar shines in the Champions League with artillery and title.”
The New York Times (USA) — “Barcelona Overwhelms Juventus to Win Fifth Champions League Title,” declared the most prestigious American paper, highlighting the role of Barça’s famed trident: “Behind its three superstar scorers, Barcelona completed a so-called treble, having taken both the Spanish league and the Spanish cup titles.”
The Guardian (UK) — The British daily also cited Barça’s prolific front line: “Suárez, Messi and Neymar too good for Juventus.”
The Wall Street Journal (USA) — This influential American daily, known more for finance than football, recognised the transcendence of Barça’s once-in-a-lifetime squad and didn’t mince words: “Barcelona’s 3-1 victory over Juventus for the Champions League title was more than the top team in Spain grinding down the top team in Italy. Barcelona won its fourth Champions League title in a decade to cement its status as the most dominant club of its generation,” it declared.
In his first season in charge of the Club, Luis Enrique has joined an exclusive club of coaches who have achieved success in the League, domestic Cup and European Cup in the same season
Barça’s win against Juventus made them the first team to claim two trebles of League Cup and Champions League success and coach Luis Enrique has also claimed his place in history as only the eight manager to achieve the feat – and that in his first year at the Club.
Luis Enrique joins Jock Stein (Celtic, 1967), Stefan Kovacs (Ajax, 1972), Guus Hiddink (PSV Eindhoven, 1988), Alex Ferguson (Manchester United, 1999), Pep Guardiola (Barça, 2009), José Mourinho (Inter, 2010) and Jupp Heynckes (Bayern, 2013) in the exclusive club of managers to claim a treble.
Second treble winning coach at Barça
Luis Enrique follows on from Pep Guardiola, as the second Barça boss to take a treble after the Catalan beat Manchester United at Wembley in 2009 to add to that season’s League and Cup triumphs with a number of players still in the current squad.
Twenty thousand fans celebrate Barça's unforgettable night at the Olympiastadion
The dream of a fifth UEFA Champions League title and second treble became reality on Saturday night in Berlin, where close to 20,000 Barça fans lived it live from the majestic Olympiastadion. An entire section behind one of the goals was dyed blue and maroon. It was especially spectacular before kick off when the fans held up a mosaic with the Club motto, més que un club.
It was a spectacular event as fans from both sides came to the Olympiastadion after enjoying the streets of the German capital, cheering tirelessly.
The Barça fans exploded with the early Rakitic goal, and then held in there when Morata pulled Juve level in the second half. Suárez's goal that made it 2-1, and Neymar's in injury time on the last play of the game unleashed the euphoria in Germany.
The post-game celebration after the game was epic. First there was the iconic image of Xavi lifting the trophy. Later, neither the players nor the fans wanted to leave perhaps the most memorable scene in the history of the Club. An hour after the conclusion of the match, players were still on the grass, just to make sure that what they had experienced was not a dream.
See all the top plays from Saturday's historic victory that gave Barça their second treble in Club history
The UEFA Champions League Final is always a memorable game. Don't miss this opportunity to relive the match against Juventus. Rakitic's goal, Morata's tying score, Luis Suarez's go-ahead goal and Neymar's clincher. Xavi then lifted the Champions League trophy before the team celebrated their second treble.
The triumph in Berlin has unleashed unbridled joy amongst Barça fans
For the second Saturday on the run, the emblematic fountain on the Barcelona Rambla is filling up with celebrating Barça fans after the team won their fifth European Cup
The Barça fans are out in force at the emblematic Font de Canaletes on the Barcelona Rambla tonight after Barça crowned their treble winning season with the Club’s fifth European Cup.
When the final whistle went in Berlin, the Barça fans began to flood into Canaletes for the second Saturday night on the run following last weekend’s Spanish Cup win over Bilbao as what is sure to be another long night of celebrations began!
The first-year coach believes his squad deserved the win over an outstanding rival
Luis Enrique described his team's performance as "spectacular" after they won the UEFA Champions League for the fifth time in Club history and completed a historic second treble. "I think we played a spectacular final against top opponents like Juventus. We created more chances than them and I think we were better. We deserved to win the final," he said following the game.
Here are the highlights of what Luis Enrique had to say:
On the season:
"We played 60 games, with a record of 50 wins, four draws and six defeats.""I congratulate the players. Their quality and solidarity are indisputable."
"FC Barcelona is the best club in Europe in the last 10 years."On the Final:
"You do not win every game easily. We had to suffer against a very good Juventus."
"Buffon was his usual self: very good."
"At the beginning of the second half Juventus pressed us and drew level. That was our toughest moment. The first half was ours."
Catalans become the first team ever to twice win their domestic double as well as the Champions League
2008/09 and 2014/15 go down in history as the two greatest seasons in FC Barcelona history. After beating Juventus at the Olympiastadion on Saturday night, they have completed the treble of Liga, Copa del Rey and Champions League, just like they did under Pep Guardiola six years ago.
Seven different teams had won similar trebles in the past, but Barça are the first to repeat the achievement of 2009, the year that they won 6-2 at the Santiago Bernabéu on the way to the Liga title, beat Athletic Bilbao at Mestalla to win the cup and then overcame Manchester United in Rome to become champions of Europe.
Of course, they went on to add the Spanish and European Super Cups and the Club World Cup, meaning an unprecedented six major titles in a calendar year.
Six years later, now under Luis Enrique, and they have done it again. They clinched the league title at the Vicente Calderón, home of the defending champions, with a game in hand. Athletic were once again the victims in the cup final, this time at the Camp Nou, and the Champions League was secured on Saturday night in the German capital against another side that was chasing a treble, Juventus of Turin.
No fewer than seven of the current Barça squad were involved in both treble-winning campaigns, namely Xavi Hernández, Andrés Iniesta, Leo Messi, Gerard Piqué, Dani Alves, Sergio Busquets and Pedro Rodríguez.
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