Skip to main content

Barcelona 2012/13: New season, new dreams


 Tito Vilanova is about to face one of the toughest challenges ever in world football during his debut season: Succeeding Pep Guardiola, the most successful coach in over 110 years of Blaugrana history.

Lionel Messi, Xavi Hernandez, Andres Iniesta... The golden generation which took our club to 14 out of 19 trophies in just 4 seasons are still here but the big question is whether they can recover from the loss of their inspirational manager and respond to the assistant who has been his shadow during that period in the same manner.

 Preseason has gone smoothly, with players talking wonders about Tito Vilanova's coaching style within the dressing room and how he has already made the transition from assistant to head coach with ease.

 Results also seem to be going Tito's way, with Barcelona still unbeaten after 5 preseason matches and scoring a total of 14 goals in the process. I am obviously fully aware that these were only friendly matches where the priority was increasing fitness and adapting to minor formation changes but, in terms of increasing players' confidence for the tough season ahead, a win is a win, no matter when or where.

 Under Pep Guardiola, winning became second nature. Tito Vilanova has no intention of introducing dramatic changes so our focus on victory and working ethos should remain the same. In a club where fans expect not only titles but also excellent football in the process, it simply couldn't be any other way.

 Last season was definitely the weakest under Pep Guardiola. Sure, it was remarkable to win 4 out of the 6 competitions we entered but failed to grab the 2 most desirable trophies. At the Camp Nou, a year without either La Liga or the Champions League can simply not be considered a total success.

 Looking back, it seems clear that Barcelona simply didn't have what it takes when it mattered the most. You can argue the unfortunate long-term injuries David Villa, Pedro, Alexis Sanchez, Eric Abidal or Carles Puyol picked up didn't help. It must also be said that Pep Guardiola's decision to constantly swap our successful 4-3-3 formation with Johan Cruyff's classic 3-4-3 backfired, with new players such as Cesc Fabregas ending up feeling confused and key man Dani Alves feeling pushed out despite having excelled for years. A very poor overall performance from Gerard Piqué, reportedly due to disagreements with Guardiola, was also a hindrance.

 Can the above be considered excuses? Of course not, they are only factors that influenced last season's outcome and, as such, the focus now must be on looking back at what went wrong and ensure those previous mistakes are never repeated again.

  barcelona%202012%202013%20wallpaper%20barcablog%20barca%20blog%20barcelona%20barcelona%202012%202013%20wallpaper%20barcablog%20barca%20blog%20barcelona.png

 There are many reasons to be optimistic about the new season. Tito Vilanova ensures the continuation of the Pep Guardiola methods and philosophy. The core of our team remains unchanged. The addition of Jordi Alba adds fresh blood and blistering pace to our left wing. Dani Alves seems geared up again and full of confidence. Gerard Pique performed excellently at Euro 2012 and should be back to his best. Sergio Busquets continues to grow into a commanding midfielder. Xavi and Andres Iniesta are fit and ready to apply their "death-by-tiki-taka" turture once again. Cesc Fabregas and Alexis Sanchez begin their second season, meaning their adaptation period should now be truly over. David Villa and Pedro are back to fitness and determined to score the 20+ goals per season that Barcelona so dearly missed last season. Gerard Deulofeu and Sergi Roberto are beginning to show glimpses of greatness. And last, but definitely not least: Lionel Messi is still Lionel Messi.

 I am fully aware that teams such as Real Madrid, Manchester City, Chelsea, PSG or Manchester United are in a much stronger position than us when it comes to signing new players and, as a result, have managed to gather a remarkable amount of stars within their squads. While we respect the progress our rivals may have made, Barcelona's the expectations must be, quite simply, to lift every trophy we compete for. Only time will tell whether we end up winning them all or failing miserably. One thing is non-negotiable though: We expect nothing but 100% commitment from all our players and coaches. From then on, what will be, will be.

 Pep is gone, Tito is our leader now. In football, the past counts for nothing. Time to write the future.

 Tots Units Fem Força!!! (in English: Together We Are Stronger!)

Comments

Popular posts from this blog

Signing Paulinho for €40M is utter madness from Barcelona

Barcelona have signed Paulinho from Guangzhou Evergrande after paying €40 million for his transfer, as speculated in his release clause, according to multiple sources.

The Brazilian international midfielder, who would sign a four-year deal worth a reported €5M per season, would have completed a very unusual career path after being rejected by Tottenham Hotspurs in the English Premier League, then coming back to form in the Chinese Super League before landing at the Camp Nou at 29 years of age.

To say the signing of Paulinho is puzzling is a huge understatement. While it is disappointing to see the current Barcelona board struggling to bring world-class talent such as Philippe Coutinho or Ousmane Dembele to the Camp Nou, it is in fact much worse to see them having to pay the release clause of a player that has not been linked with any other major club in recent times.

Sure, it is clear that Paulinho has been a major contributor to the current leaders of the Chinese Super League but, h…

Philippe Coutinho's transfer request brings him closer to Barcelona

Philippe Coutinho has reportedly issued Liverpool with a transfer request, a move that can only be understood as the next step in his ongoing battle to join FC Barcelona during the current transfer window.

The Catalans are believed to have offered up to €100M for Coutinho but, given his importance within the Reds' squad, his current club has refused to allow his to leave for the current La Liga runners-up.

Both Liverpool manager Jurgen Klopp and club owners Fenway Sports Group have publicly explained that Coutinho will be part of the Liverpool squad for the upcoming season regardless of how much money Barcelona decide to offer to secure the Brazilian's services.

Coutinho, clearly unhappy about the latest developments, has decided to take matters a step further in a desperate attempt to agitate the current situation and force a transfer to the Camp Nou.

Personally, I believe that Coutinho would be a great addition to Barcelona given his undeniable quality, experience in a huge…

Will Dembele sign for Barcelona? El Clasico Supercopa preview and Bartomeu resignation [TBP 23]

The Barcelona Podcast duo consider whether the Barca board should continue to chase Ousmane Dembele despite Borussia Dortmund's refusal to sell the promising youngster. Francesc and Dan analyse Barca's preseason and preview the Supercopa Clasico against Real Madrid. The pair also discuss whether Josep Maria Bartomeu should resign given the recent developments off the pit. Episode 23 of 'The Barcelona Podcast' is finally here!

Thank you for supporting us by reviewing our show on iTunes at itunes.apple.com/review?id1242126464

Do you know someone who loves Barcelona as much as you do? If so, would you share this podcast with them? That would be awesome, thank you!

You can also listen to previous episodes of 'The Barcelona Podcast' on iTunes, Stitcher, SoundCloud or via your preferred podcast app.



'The Barcelona Podcast' is brought to you by Francesc Tomas (as seen in ESPN, The Guardian) and Dan Hilton (Barcablog). Listen in for our opinionated take on the…

Why Sergio Busquets' criticism of the Barcelona board is fully justified

Sergio Busquets is a player who prefers to stay away from the spotlight and do his talking on the pitch, ensuring Barca's engine continues to tick with his vision, positioning and charisma. However, in the rare occasions in which he decides to speak to the world's media, his words are loud and clear.

Following Barca's frustrating home defeat (1-3) against Real Madrid in the first leg of the SuperCopa, Busquets did not hesitate to demand much-needed new signings in order to reinforce the Blaugrana squad after the unexpected departure of Neymar:

"We try to improve the team regardless of the result of the Super Cup match. Those who come will be welcome. After Neymar's departure, we know that we need mostly offensive players, but we need to improve in all positions and aspects. With Neymar's departure evidently the team lost an attacking level, because you realise the footballer that is Neymar, there everyone will agree. About that we have Messi-dependence, in the…

Does signing Paulinho make any sense? SuperClasico analysis and prioritising La Masia [TBP 24]

The Barcelona Podcast duo consider whether signing Paulinho would actually add anything positive to the Barca squad. Francesc and Dan analyse Barca's performance against Real Madrid in the Supercopa Clasico. The pair also discuss whether Josep Maria Bartomeu's inefficiency is damaging La Masia beyond repair. Episode 24 of 'The Barcelona Podcast', brought to you by our friends at bettingtips4you.com, is finally here!

Do you know someone who loves Barcelona as much as you do? If so, would you share this podcast with them? That would be awesome, thank you!

You can also listen to previous episodes of 'The Barcelona Podcast' on iTunes, Stitcher, SoundCloud or via your preferred podcast app.



'The Barcelona Podcast' is brought to you by Francesc Tomas (as seen in ESPN, The Guardian) and Dan Hilton (Barcablog). Listen in for our opinionated take on the hottest breaking stories from the Camp Nou!

We have secured an EXCLUSIVE discount for you to watch hundreds of…

Barcelona Terror Attack Comment plus 'Will the #BartomeuDimiteYa campaign make a difference? SuperClasico shambles and Luis Suarez injury [TBP 25]'

The Barcelona Podcast duo consider whether the huge #BartomeuDimiteYa campaign on social media will actually change Barca's future. Francesc and Dan analyse Barca's terrible performance against Real Madrid in the Supercopa Clasico. The pair also discuss how the Blaugranas can respond to Luis Suarez's injury. Episode 25 of 'The Barcelona Podcast' is finally here!

Thank you for supporting us by reviewing our show on iTunes at itunes.apple.com/review?id1242126464

Do you know someone who loves Barcelona as much as you do? If so, would you share this podcast with them? That would be awesome, thank you!

You can also listen to previous episodes of 'The Barcelona Podcast' on iTunes, Stitcher, SoundCloud or via your preferred podcast app.



'The Barcelona Podcast' is brought to you by Francesc Tomas (as seen in ESPN, The Guardian) and Dan Hilton (Barcablog). Listen in for our opinionated take on the hottest breaking stories from the Camp Nou!

We have secured …

Is Gerard Deulofeu right for Barcelona? Paulinho, Arda Turan transfer rumours [TBP 11]

The Barcelona Podcast duo debate if Barcelona made a mistake resigning Gerard Deulofeu. Francesc and Dan also discuss the Paulinho transfer rumours and whether Arda Turan has done enough to remain at Barca next season. Episode 11 of 'The Barcelona Podcast' is finally here!

If you are new here, consider subscribing so that you never miss another update! You can listen on iTunes, via your preferred podcast app or on Soundcloud.

Do you know someone who loves Barcelona as much as you do? If so, would you share this podcast with them? That would be awesome, thank you!

You can also listen to previous episodes here:

'The Barcelona Podcast' is brought to you by Francesc Tomas (as seen in ESPN, The Guardian) and Dan Hilton (Barcablog). Listen in for our opinionated take on the hottest breaking stories from the Camp Nou!

Marco Reus, preferred transfer target for Barca fans | Barcelona News

Will Coutinho sign for Barcelona? Iñigo Martinez rumours and Arda Turan future [TBP 22]

The Barcelona Podcast duo consider whether the Barca board should go all out to bring Philippe Coutinho to the Camp Nou. Francesc and Dan focus on what Iñigo Martinez would add to the Blaugrana squad. The pair also discuss the reasons why offloading Arda Turan is becoming a much more difficult task than anticipated. Episode 22 of 'The Barcelona Podcast' is finally here!

Thank you for supporting us by reviewing our show on iTunes at itunes.apple.com/review?id1242126464

Do you know someone who loves Barcelona as much as you do? If so, would you share this podcast with them? That would be awesome, thank you!
You can also listen to previous episodes of 'The Barcelona Podcast' on iTunes, Stitcher, SoundCloud or via your preferred podcast app.



'The Barcelona Podcast' is brought to you by Francesc Tomas (as seen in ESPN, The Guardian) and Dan Hilton (Barcablog). Listen in for our opinionated take on the hottest breaking stories from the Camp Nou!

We have secured an E…

OFFICIAL: Neymar is leaving Barcelona! Bartomeu talking nonsense and Samper future [TBP 20]

The Barcelona Podcast duo address the now OFFICIAL departure of Neymar to PSG. Francesc and Dan also try to make sense of Josep Maria Bartomeu's latest comments on Xavi, Andres Iniesta and La Masia. The pair also discuss whether Sergi Samper and Carles Aleñà have shown enough promise to become first team players this season. Episode 20 of 'The Barcelona Podcast' is finally here!

Thank you for supporting us by reviewing our show on iTunes at itunes.apple.com/review?id1242126464

Do you know someone who loves Barcelona as much as you do? If so, would you share this podcast with them? That would be awesome, thank you!

As always, you can listen on iTunes, Stitcher, Google Play, SoundCloud or via your preferred podcast app.



'The Barcelona Podcast' is brought to you by Francesc Tomas (as seen in ESPN, The Guardian) and Dan Hilton (Barcablog). Listen in for our opinionated take on the hottest breaking stories from the Camp Nou!

We have secured an EXCLUSIVE discount for yo…