FC Barcelona will play a friendly in Split (Croatia) against HNK Hajduk, on Saturday 23rd of July (20.30). It’ll be the first of six pre-season games for Barça.
Within its centenary celebratrions, HNK Hajduk Split will play the new Champions of Europe, FC
Barcelona, in the Poljud stadium in Split. Barça will kick-off their 2011 pre-season with this
friendly in Croatia. However, none of the players who will be playing in the Copa America or the
European Under-21 Championship will be there. The game will also help the manager Krasimir Balakov
(well known former 90’s international player who played for Sporting Lisbon and Stuttgart,
amongst other teams), who joined Hajduk this summer, to begin to shape his team.
Second in the Croatian League
This season Hajduk Split was runner-up in the Croatian League, just behind Dynamo
Zagreb, and hasn’t won the Croatian championship since 2005 (they have won the Croatian
League six times). The team last won the Croatian Cup in 2010. Hajduk Split has been part of the
Croatian League since the declaration of independence by Croatia in 1991.
To Croatia, 50 years on
It’s been half a century since FC Barcelona last visited Croatia.
Specifically, since the 1961/62 season, when Luis Miró managed the team which drew 2-2 at Dinamo
Zagreb, Hajduk Split's eternal rival, in the first game of the last 16 of the UEFA Cup. In the
return leg Barça won 5-1 and qualified for the quarterfinals.
With this match confirmed, FC Barcelona have their 2011 pre-season completely
mapped out. After the match in Split on July 23rd, they’ll travel to Munich, where
they’ll dispute the Audi Cup against Internacional from Porto Alegre (July 26th) and Bayern
or AC Milan (July 27th). Subsequently, the team will begin their U.S. tour, where they’ll
will face Manchester United (July 30th), Chivas from Guadalajara (August 3rd) and Club America