Wednesday, July 09, 2008

Rock the vote

With Joan Laporta barely surviving the vote of no confidence in his presidency last Sunday, FCB is still very much at sea. Rumours abound that Laporta will resign on Thursday (tomorrow), thus triggering an election. I have my doubts about this for a few reasons, mostly concerning transfers, specifically those of Ronaldinho and Samuel Eto'o.

Elections would mean an immediate suspension of all transfer activity until a new president is in place, which realistically wouldn't be until the end of August/ the beginning of September, by which time the transfer window would be closed. Whatever of Eto'o being persuaded to remain at the Camp Nou, relations between 'dinho and the club appear to be at an all time low (which really is saying something) Despite the fact that he's unlikely to still be with the blaugrana come mid-August when the Olympics are on, the club have denied him permission to go anyway.

While they're perfectly within their rights to do this (the Olympics is after all, not a FIFA sanctioned tournament), it's the sort of thing you'd do before a player is called up to the squad, not afterward. Why do they care if he goes or not? It's not like he's going to play in the Champions League qualifiers anyway (or ever again wearing the number 10 Barça shirt). It strikes me as petty.

Business Time

In the past week and a half the club have been making serious moves toward securing Emmanuel Adebayor from Arsenal, for a fee that could be as high as €30 million. I'm no fan of Ade, who ala Andy Cole, needs about six chances to score one gol. Having forced his way out of Monaco little over eighteen months ago and been the agitator-in-chief in the Togo squad that threatened to go on strike at the World Cup (like anyone would have noticed), he's at it again, looking either for a move away from Ashburton Grove or a huge wage increase. With Champions League-less AC Milan seemingly out of the running, his mostly likely destination would appear to be the Camp Nou.

The very idea of replacing a striker as clinical and sharp as Eto'o with a big lumbering oaf such as Ade is ridiculous. The possible addition of his equally over-rated Belarussian team-mate, Alex Hleb, doesn't fill me with joy either. Neither are of the quality Barça need and both are looking for crazy money on the back of one good season. Milan, Bayern or whomever want's them are welcome to their hyped up asses.

Another potential arrival is Russian playmaker and star of erm, two games, at Euro 2008, Andrei Arshavin. Currently at Zenit St. Petersburg, Barça have already had one bid of around €15 million rejected. Like Ade and Hleb, Arshavin is flavour of the month after he took Sweden and the Netherlands apart. Everyone seems to be forgetting however that he was absolutely rubbish in the semi-final against Espana and that perhaps, at 27 and having spent his career up to now in Russian futbol, that he isn't the second coming after all and is in fact just quite good. Given the system that the blaugrana play I don't quite see where he'd fit in either, wide left maybe? I don't know. There's not really any room for him in the midfield with Xavi, Keita, iniesta et al and it's Messi Messi Messi and Dani Alves on the right (!) so...

I may have missed

Of course when I say "may have" I do of course mean "did". Back in late June, former Barça and Real Madrid midfielder, has been appointed the new coach of Barça B, now known as Barcelona Athletic. He's signed a two year deal and will hopefully follow in Pep's footsteps. Enrique is a good guy, he was a top player and (like a slew of others) very shabbaly treated by Real, who let his contract lapse, resulting in his joining Barcelona. What's not to like :)

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