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05.08.2007 14:44

Eto'o and Henry together up front

Anna Segura

Against Beijing Guoan, Rijkaard made a number of changes with respect to the games in Scotland. He opted for a striking partnership of Thierry Henry and Samuel Eto'o.

Although Frank Rijkaard had hinted that he would be fielding similar sides to those that faced Dundee United and Hearts, injuries to Ronaldinho and Sylvinho forced him to modify his tactics. Beijing Guoan lined up against a Barça side featuring Henry, Giovani, Abidal and Jorquera as starters for the first time this season. This meant Henry and Eto'o played together for the first time, and were supported expertly by young Giovani Dos Santos.

First half together

The Cameroonian and Frenchman played the first 45 minutes together, and both Eto'o and Henry had early chances to score and showed they are able to play the ball between each other and create dangerous opportunities.

Giovani Dos Santos was the third forward, and lived up to expectations and scored the first goal of the day. Giovani is already getting used to teaming up with Henry, but against Beijing Guoan got his first taste of what it is like when Eto’o is added to the mix.

Changing positions

Henry and Eto'o showed a remarkable knack for swapping positions, playing on the left, right and the middle as the needs arose. Eto'o occasionally drifted right to allow Giovani to press forward. Thierry Henry had a couple of good chances towards the end of the first half.

Henry came off at half time, while Eto'o stayed on for 71 minutes and Giovani was given three minutes more.
Eto'o and Henry together up front
Oier makes debut
In the second half, Frank Rijkaard goalkeeper Oier Olazábal replaced Albert Jorquera, which was the reserve team stopper’s first ever taste of first team football at Barça.

French defender Lilian Thuram was the only player that stayed on for the whole 90 minutes of the game in the Chinese capital.

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