Several FC Barcelona players have been included in international squads in September. Messi and Mascherano will be helping Argentina in World Cup qualifiers against Paraguay and Peru on September 7 and 11, while Chile and Alexis also have a game in the South American qualifying zone, against Colombia on the 11th. Alves and Adriano will be joining the Brazil squad for friendlies against South Africa (7th) and China (10th).
The recently signed Alex Song will also be away playing for Cameroon. The West Africans play on September 8 against Cape Verde in a qualifying fixture for the 2013 African Cup of Nations.
It’s time to switch attention back to the league. The FC Barcelona first team returned to training on Friday evening on pitch 4 at the Ciutat Esportiva, with Tito Vilanova using everyone he has available plus Tello and Miguel Bañuz of Barça B. The players that started against Real Madrid worked at a gentler pace than the others, but everybody’s minds were fully focused on Saturday’s trip to Pamplona.
Thiago in isolation
Thiago Alcántara, who is still recovering from a tibia injury, worked out separately from the rest of the squad, while Sergi Roberto, who has been training with the first team recently, returned to the reserves on Friday, his services having been requested for the second division’s version of the clásico this weekend.