The Winner Takes It All; Chelsea vs Barca UCL Semi-Final Preview

“Pep Guardiola has named all the available players in the squad which will travel to London. Carles Puyol, who is suspended for the leg will also travel with the squad. The squad announced are Valdés, Jorquera, Pinto, Alves, Víctor Sánchez, Piqué, Cáceres, Abidal, Sylvinho, Touré Yaya, Keita, Busquets, Gudjohnsen, Xavi, Iniesta, Hleb, Bojan, Henry, Eto’o, Messi and Pedro.” (All About FC Barcelona)

“Intelligence and emotion” required, says Guus(ESPN)
“Chelsea’s interim coach Guus Hiddink has called on his players to overcome Barcelona with a combination of ‘intelligence and emotion” in their Champions League showdown at Stamford Bridge tomorrow night.”

Sizing up the Libertadores final 16 (SI)
“Who will stop the boys from Brazil? With all five representatives gaining entry into the knockout phase of the 50th edition of the Copa Libertadores, there’s a great chance that a club from Brazil will emerge as South American champions come finals time in July.”

Why the Martyrs matter (BBC)
“It could signify Merthyr Tydfil’s last surviving memory of better days, but the once thriving heartbeat of Britain’s industrial revolution fears for the loss of its football club. The financially-troubled Merthyr Tydfil FC are struggling to pay utility bills with alarming regularity.”

Japan’s future is looking rosy (World Soccer)
“Yuya Osako is a name we are not allowed to mention at the moment. Kashima Antlers manager Oswaldo Oliveira is very strict about this, insisting his teenage striker still has a long way to go and needs to be protected from the media spotlight. Trouble is, it’s getting hard.”

Joey Barton – How do you defend the indefensible? (SoccerLens)
“This must be a first. A story comes out of Newcastle United that ISN’T a shock. Joey Barton suspended by the club “until further notice”, in addition to his three game FA ban, and unlikely to play for the club again — regardless of whether Alan Shearer runs back into the arms of Gary Lineker at the end of the current season.”

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