New sponsorship deal

When it comes to the rumour surrounding the clubs in the English Premiership they generally centre on possible arrivals and departures of players and managers, but another thing that changes fairly frequently is the shirt sponsorships for the major teams.

This is because this sponsorship accounts for a significant proportion of their revenue, and the top clubs are always looking for a more lucrative deal in the hope of gaining a financial edge. Now rumours suggest that a Premiership club may be about to announce just such a deal, with the gambling site Lucky Nugget.

DRAW IN PARIS

The Champions League quarter final match played between Barcelona and Paris Saint-Germain at Parc des Princes on Tuesday has ended in a draw. Both the teams scored a couple of goals each.
This was the first leg. These two teams will again face each other in the return leg which is scheduled to take place at Camp Nou on 10th of April.

Barca was ahead in the match for a long time. They got the lead with Lionel Messi’s goal in the 38th minute and they maintained that lead for 40 odd minutes.

In the last few minutes of the match, some dramatic things happened. In the 79th minute, Zlatan Ibrahimovic scored the equalizer for PSG with a fine header. That goal gave the home supporters a big relief.

However, the happiness of PSG supporters didn’t last long. A penalty was awarded to Barca in the 89th minute and Xavi was asked to take the shot. He blasted the ball into the right hand corner of the net and gave Barca the lead again.

The last twist in the game still had to come. In the 4th minute of the stoppage time, the score became 2-2. The scorer was Blaise Matuidi, but, the hard work was done by Ibrahimovic. After a brilliant run, he passed the ball to Matuidi who finished it with a powerful shot.

The whole stadium erupted after that goal. There were wonderful scenes out there. The home supporters as well as the PSG players were jumping in joy, while, there was clear disappointment on the faces of Barca players. They would have been thinking that they had this one in the bag.
This was a great game of football. Both the teams played some high quality football and the spectators got their money’s worth.

Barcelona’s next match will be a La Liga encounter against Mallorca at Camp Nou on 6th of April.

CESC HAPPY WITH GAME

Cesc Fabregas has said that his team performed quite decently in the Copa Del Rey match against Real Madrid which ended in a draw. That match was played at Estadio Santiago Bernabeu on Sunday. Both the teams scored one goal each in the match.

For Barcelona, Fabregas was the one who found the back of the net in the 50th minute of the match by capitalizing on Lionel Messi’s pass. The scores got levelled in the 81st minute when Raphael Varane scored for Madrid.

Talking to the reporters after the match, Fabregas said, “It was a good performance by us. We were taking on Madrid at Bernabeu which is not an easy task. We stopped them on draw and I think it’s not such a bad result for us. We will play the return leg on our home ground and hopefully, we will perform better than this in that match.”

Barcelona had a few opportunities in the first half. In the 13th minute, Jordi Alba got a wonderful pass from Andres Iniesta, but, the Spanish midfielder couldn’t give the finishing touch. His shot went wide of the net.

In the 21st minute, Barcelona had another opportunity when they got a free kick, but, again, they wasted the chance. Xavi Hernandez’s shot bounced back after hitting the crossbar.

When asked about the lost opportunities in the first half, Fabregas said, “It was a huge pressure game and the players were a bit nervous at the start. So, you can expect a few mistakes here and there. But, you can’t question our commitment. The commitment was there. We tried hard and overall, we did quite well.”

Barcelona will again face Real Madrid in the return leg of the Copa Del Rey at Camp Nou on 27th of February.

MESSI BACKS CESC

The Argentine superstar Lionel Messi has said that he is extremely delighted to be part of the same team containing the Spaniard Cesc Fabregas at Barcelona. The arrival of the Spaniard in a £ 35 million deal from Arsenal more than a year ago has been a catalyst to Lionel Messi touching even bigger heights.

Even though primarily a midfielder, Fabregas has been used as a false number nine not only by the Barcelona team, but also by the Spanish national team as well. He has also adapted in this new role extremely well, which can be seen by the understanding that he has with Lionel Messi on the pitch.

The two players have been instrumental in creating a lot of chances for Barcelona since the arrival of Tito Vilanova as a replacement for Pep Guardiola. Messi has said that it is not surprising to see Fabregas be at the end of a very good thing done by Barcelona because he is a player who knows the style of football demanded by the club. Fabregas and Messi both came through the academy at Barcelona before the 25-year-old Spaniard left for Arsenal as a 16-year-old in a £ 2 million deal. Messi has said that it is extremely easy to play with Fabregas because they have such a great understanding.

“Cesc and I get on really well, we always know what each other wants. He is so easy to play with. I think we both know the type of game the club wants to play. Here in the youth academy of Barcelona I learned a lot. The club works differently from the rest of the world in terms of ball control, passing and implementing the tactical system,” said the Barcelona superstar Lionel Messi, who is on course to creating a record for the most number of goals in a calendar year.

CESC WANTS BARCA WIN

The Barcelona midfielder Cesc Fabregas has said that he and the club wants the archrivals Real Madrid to win matches because it only motivates them to do even well. Barcelona currently have an eight point advantage over Real Madrid at the top of the table and are the favourites to lift the title.

Even though it is very early stages in the season, this is regarded as a significant advantage that is going to be very tough for Barcelona to concede over the remaining matches in the season. Still, the former Arsenal midfielder Cesc Fabregas is not willing to allow any complacency within the game.

He has said that Barcelona are extremely keen to lift the la Liga title once again after being relegated to the second position last season. This also meant that Barcelona are unable to complete four successive league title victories, but they will be trying once again from this season. Fabregas also said that he is extremely happy to be playing alongside a player like Lionel Messi. He thinks that the Argentine superstar is the best player in the world. He has also praised the way he reacts to the passes from the former Arsenal man.

"We always want Madrid to win, because it forces us to play even better. For that reason, we have to win every game if we want to win the league. Leo is very easy to link up with, to play one-twos with. It's an honour for me and many others to play alongside him," said Fabregas. Cesc Fabregas has made a decent start to the new season making five goals in 16 matches. However, he is yet to reach the levels of his Arsenal career. The midfielder has been playing more of as a false striker for Barcelona this season.

BARCA BEAT GRANADA

Cesc Fabregas’ club, Barcelona, has defeated Granada by 2-0 in a La Liga encounter on Sunday at Camp Nou. It was the fifth consecutive victory of Barcelona in the ongoing La Liga season. Tito Vilanova’s boys are in tremendous form at the moment and the team has won all the five matches convincingly.

Barcelona has scored 14 goals in the five La Liga matches that the team has played in the current season so far. The Barcelona supporters turned up in huge numbers to watch this match and they were thoroughly entertained.

The star striker of Barcelona, Lionel Messi, wasn’t able make an impact in the match. He had got a few opportunities to take Barcelona ahead in the first half, but, the Argentinean didn’t manage to give finishing touch to any of those opportunities.

There was no goal scored in the first half. The defenders of Granada did a fantastic job for their team. The Barca team struggled to find the net in the earlier part of the second half as well. Cesc Fabregas had almost opened the scoring in the 75th minute, but, his low shot missed the goal post by a whisker.

It was Xavi who took Barcelona ahead just three minutes before the end of the match. The Spaniard got the ball right at the edge of the penalty box and he beat Tono, the goalkeeper of Granada, quite comfortably. The game went out of the reach of Granada when Borja Gomez deflected the cross of Messi into his own net in the injury time. That own goal secured the victory of Barcelona.

In the post match press conference, Tito Vilanova hailed Xavi who came to play as substitute in the 54th minute of the match and performed brilliantly. As per Vilanova, Xavi is an experienced player and he delivered for the team once again. It’s wonderful that the team has won every match in the ongoing La Liga season so far. The players are looking confident and if they continue to play in this fashion, the team would definitely regain the La Liga title from Real Madrid.

Want to win a Cesc Fabregas signed photo? Send us your score prediction for the next match via twitter, and you might win! :)

SPAIN BEAT PUERTO RICO

The Spain national football team has defeated Puerto Rico by 2-1 in a friendly match at Estadio Juan Ramon Loubriel. The Spanish team could have won the match with a bigger margin, but, the Spanish players didn’t manage to capitalize on the opportunities that they got in the second half. The defenders of Puerto Rico performed brilliantly in the second half. The Spanish team was playing its first match after winning the Euro Cup last month and the Spanish players looked a bit rusty in the match. These two teams played against each other for the first time.

The Spanish team started the match aggressively and created some opportunities. But, the goalkeeper of Puerto Rico, Bil Gaudette, made some brilliant saves and didn’t let the Spanish team find the net till the 42nd minute of the match. Santi Cazorla took his team ahead by smashing a powerful shot from a distance of 25 yards. Gaudette had absolutely no chance of stopping the ball. Just two minutes later, Fabregas scored the second goal for Spain. Jesus Navas set up the goal by giving a brilliant cross to Fabregas.

The Barcelona midfielder gave the finishing touch with a fantastic volley and made the score 2-0. In the second half, the Puerto Rico team showed a bit of attacking attitude. Puerto managed to score its first goal in the 65th minute when Marc Cintron capitalized on the pass of Hector Ramos and flicked the ball into the bottom corner of the goal post to bring his team back into the match. But, the Spanish team tighten its defense after that and didn’t let Puerto score the leveller till the end of the match.

After the match, the manager of the Spanish team, Vicente Del Bosque, admitted that the Spanish players could have played a lot better. Bosque also praised the Puerto team and said that he has been hugely impressed by some of the Puerto players.

PORTUGAL ARE A THREAT

Spanish midfielder Cesc Fabregas has said that he is under no illusion that the Portuguese will offer a major threat to the Spanish in their efforts to reach the Euro 2012 final. Spain have qualified for the final of the competition after beating France 2-0 in the quarter-final stage. They are the favourites to win the competition, but will face a stern opposition in the form of Portugal.

No one has expected Portugal to reach the stage of the competition after they were grouped in the famous 'group of death'. However, attractive performances in the group stages coupled with stubborn display in the quarter-final mean that they will face Spain in the semifinals of the competition.

At this stage of competition, everyone will believe that they have the opportunity to win the tournament itself according to Cesc Fabregas. He has also singled out Cristiano Ronaldo as a major threat for Portugal, but is also intelligent enough to know that Portugal do not have only Ronaldo as the main force within their team. Fabregas has been used as the false striker by Spain in the quarter-final match against France. It remains to be seen if Spanish national team manager Vicente del Bosque will be willing to recall Fernando Torres to the starting line-up.

"Portugal have a strong counterattack, but if I were a coach and had Nani and Cristiano Ronaldo I'd probably play that way too. There may be three Real Madrid players in their side but they have a distinct style. Portugal have a midfield which likes to hold the ball and use it well," said Cesc Fabregas after the 2-0 win over France. Alonso scored both the goals for Spain at a time when it looked extremely difficult for the current Champions to open the scoring.

VILLANOVA WILL BE GREAT

Barcelona midfielder Cesc Fabregas has said that the decision taken by the club to appoint Guardiola's assistant manager Tito Villanova as the new manager of Barcelona is a great decision. Cesc Fabregas recently completed his first season at the club after his £ 35 million move from Arsenal in the summer.

Even though he started the season spectacularly with Barcelona, he has been extremely were in the second half of the season. Fabregas acknowledges this and promises to improve in the next season. The cup final on May 27 against Athletic Bilbao will be the last match for Guardiola before Tito Villanova takes over.

Barcelona have failed to win both the league title and the Champions League under what you will at this season after the spectacular spell of 13 trophies from a maximum possible 16 up until now. Cesc Fabregas believes that Barcelona will return to winning ways next season because he says that Tito Villanova is a man who is a winner. He has also praised the officials for taking the decision on appointing Tito Villanova, which will provide the club with much-needed continuity. Guardiola said that he expects Tito Villanova to provide something that he failed to offer the club in his four years.

"First of all, I must say that Tito is a very good person. It may sound like a cliche but it's true: he is a winner. He also shares the same virtue with Pep in that he knows how to get the best out of players. I do not like to make predictions but Barca should look great with Tito. I know Tito will want to contribute his own personal touch. And I also know that he had an influence on my signing!" said Fabregas. He also said that he is extremely happy with the decision to move to Barcelona.

FABREGAS RECKONS BARCA WILL WIN

Cesc Fabregas has said that Barcelona have the ability to get even better following their Club World Cup victory over Brazilian club Santos. Barcelona won the Club World Cup on Sunday after a 4-0 thrashing of Brazilian club Santos.

It was billed as the match between Barcelona's Lionel Messi and Santos' Neymar, but it turned out to be no contest for Barcelona, as the Catalan giants ran out 4-0 winners. Cesc Fabregas was on the score sheet for Barcelona along with Xavi and Lionel Messi. Now, the former Arsenal midfielder has said that Barcelona have the ability to up the ante even more by becoming an extraordinary side following the win.

This is the second Club World Cup victory for Barcelona in three seasons. Cesc Fabregas believes that Barcelona will certainly be untouchable in the next few years, but they need to be working hard in order to do so. Cesc Fabregas signed from Arsenal in a £ 30 million deal in the summer after failing to win trophies during his six-year stay with Arsenal. However, immediately after signing with Barcelona, he has now won a number of major trophies including the Club World Cup. Now, he says that even though it will be difficult for Barcelona to keep up the hunger, the age of the side means that it will be slightly easier.

“We are very young players and I still believe that we will keep this hunger. Obviously you cannot win every single year, that’s impossible, but we have to do the best we can try to do it. It’s great, they are the best players in the world,” he enthused. “They create so many spaces and so many chances,” he reasoned. Earlier, many criticised his move to Barcelona, but now there will be no complaints.

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