It begins. Again.
Futbol, as I'm sure you're aware, is back. La Liga doesn't kick off until the final weekend of August but already there's been a lot goin' on since I last got up on this wire. Marc Crosas has gone to Celtic, Samuel Eto'o has decided to stay put (and so too, thankfully, has Emmanuel Adebayor), Oleguer has finalised his move to Ajax, the wrangling over Leo Messi's participation in the Olympics came to a head (he stayed despite the judgement in Barça's favour and thanks to a 3-0 victory over Brasil today, he's in the final), Bojan has been called into the Spain squad to face Denmark in tomorrow's friendly, all the pre-season games and the first proper one have been won in style and by some margin (the late, late win over Boca accepted) and erm, that's it really. No further resignations from the board, no motions of no confidence, no new signings (and it appears unlikely that there will be any more), no strops, no injuries, no meltdowns.
Everything I've mentioned is kinda old news bar the futbol today in Beijing so I'm not going to comment except to say that right now I'm incredibly confident going into the new season. Barça have an amazing squad of players and Guardiola has them playing superb stuff. Given that Madrid haven't really improved (van der Vaart is no great addition and their decision to loan Garay back to Racing is baffling given their lack of cover at centre back), Villarreal have the added strains of the Champions League to contend with, Sevilla, though they've bought well, have sold their best players and Valencia are still all over the place, the blaugrana are very well placed to take back the title. A run at the CL isn't beyond them either.
Given that there are just under two weeks to go I won't be all that active on the blog unless there's some sensational news (and I'm unlikely to see the second leg of the Wisla game either) but consider this a gentle warm up, nothing as intensive as what Peps been putting the players through, but we'll get there.