Now that the 2012/13 league season is over, the FC Barcelona players have turned their focus on the upcoming international fixtures. It goes without saying that Barça’s internationals get very little rest. The Confederations Cup, World Cup qualifiers and the youth European Championships have quickly filled up this summer’s schedule. Up to 20 footballers from the first team have been officially named to their respective national teams.
Spain manager Vicente del Bosque has called up nine Barça players: Valdés, Piqué, Jordi Alba, Xavi, Busquets, Iniesta, Villa, Cesc and Pedro. La Roja will travel to Miami this Tuesday to face off against Haiti for an international friendly on Saturday. Spain will trade Florida for New York on June 11, where they will play against Ireland. Following the two international friendlies, Spain will fly to Recife to make its official debut in the Confederations Cup, against Uruguay on June 16. FC Barcelona’s new signing, Neymar Jr, and Dani Alves will feature against France on Sunday (international friendly). Brazil will make its debut in the Confederations Cup on June 15, against Japan.
Argentina, Chile and Cameroon come into the next week with the challenge of securing a spot in the 2014 World Cup. Messi, Mascherano and company will face off against Colombia this Friday and then against Ecuador on Tuesday (June 11). In addition to the two qualifiers, Argentina will feature in an international friendly against Guatemala on June 14. Alexis Sánchez has been named to Chile’s national team, and will face Paraguay on June 7 and Bolivia on June 11. Finally, Alex Song’s Cameroon will play against Togo on June 9 and Congo on June 16.
Thiago, Montoya, Bartra, Tello and Muniesa have all been named to the U21 Spain team ahead of the U21 European Championship, which is hosted by Israel. Spain will start the defence of its title on Thursday, against Russia.