Barça player Piqué to quit Spain squad

October 10, 2016 06:53 PM | ACN

Gerard Piqué, one of FC Barcelona’s most iconic players, will quit Spain’s national team in 2018. The defender stunned reporters after the Spain vs Albania match on Sunday by declaring that he was“tired”of some supporters criticism who “don’t want”him in the squad. The relationship between Spain’s national team and Pique has repeatedly ruffled feathers, not only due to Pique’s commitment to Barça and some jibes aimed at Real Madrid, but also for his clear support for Catalonia’s independence. Piqué’s decision to cut the sleeves from his shirt, which bore the Spanish colours of yellow and red, for the Spain vs Albania match outraged some Spanish fans who linked it to his lack of commitment to the national team. “The thing with the sleeves is the straw that has broken the camel's back”he said and lamented that he “tried everything”but couldn’t “take it anymore”. Pique has made 86 appearances for Spain and won the 2010 World Cup in South Africa and Euro 2012. He was also part of Spain's disappointing campaigns at the 2014 World Cup and Euro 2016.

FC Barcelona knock out Athletic for yet another semi-final appearance in the Copa del Rey

January 28, 2016 09:55 AM | MICHAEL TOLL

FC Barcelona spent over 40 minutes in an uncharacteristically precarious position but got three second half goals to knock Athletic Club Bilbao out of the Copa del Rey by a score of 3–1, 5–2 on aggregate, and qualify for the semi-finals for the sixth consecutive year. It was the third meeting in a 10-day span between the two sides — one in La Liga, two in the Cup — with FC Barcelona winning all three by a combined score of 11–2. It was also the sixth and final game between the two this season, with the initial three also coming in a cluster. The victory sees FC Barcelona extend their unbeaten streak to 25 games across all competitions, including five straight wins at Camp Nou.

FC Barcelona hit Roma for six (6-1)

November 25, 2015 09:47 AM | DAVID GLADWELL

The blaugranes are through to the last 16 of the Champions League as group winners thanks to another devastating performance with goals for Messi (2) Luis Suárez (2), Piqué and Adriano. Leo Messi returned to the side for his Champions League debut this season at Camp Nou and the Argentine's eagerness to make his mark was seen as early as the third minute. “I see the fans enjoying the team. I see the players really wanting to participate and I see the faces of those who can’t participate and they really want to.” stated Luis Enrique soon after the match. FC Barcelona are into the last 16 of this season's Champions League and they did so in style with another virtuoso performance to sweep aside AS Roma at Camp Nou and in doing so guarantee themselves top spot in Group E.

FC Barcelona vs Athletic Bilbao: Barça’s fifth title, too far (1-1)

August 18, 2015 11:51 AM | David Gladwell

A draw against Athletic Club Bilbao at Camp Nou in the second leg of the Spanish Super Cup was insufficient to turn around the 4-0 deficit from the first leg with the Basques claiming their first trophy in 31 years. Barça gave everything and Messi put the Catalans ahead right at the end of the first half giving the blaugranes the lead. However a second half sending off for Piqué meant Barça reduced to ten men for the final half an hour. Equaliser from Aduriz sealed title for Athletic. The last five minutes saw the Basques reduced to ten men also with substitute Kike Sola sent off. It was too late to affect the tie and Barça now turn their attentions to the league and an opening weekend trip to none other than Athletic Club.