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18.08.2007 11:03

Last session for the internationals

David Puig/Roger Bogunyà

The FC Barcelona first team trained for the last time on Saturday before the players called up for international duty are due to team up with their respective countries.

Starting at 9.30am, Frank Rijkaard put his players squad through another physical session that lasted around 90 minutes, but did include a game to close.

Deco sidelined

One of the main absentees was Deco, who had trained on Friday, but was forced to sit out this session after straining his right thigh muscle.

180807-1_x1x.jpgAs well as the Portuguese midefielder, Santo Ezquerro was missing because of tendonitis. Lilian Thuram and Eidur Gudjohnsen both trained away from the squad in the Camp Nou itself as they seek to overcome their respective injuries. The French international has an ankle knock while the Icelandic star is trying to shake off a problem in his left knee.

Physical tests

The rest of the players were again given a true physical test, although footballs were present throughout as is the norm. Along with sprinting and jogging exercises, the players were put through assault courses as well as having to fine tune their ball control and passing skills.

Team tactics

Tactical work was also included as Rijkaard named 11 players to simulate an attacking move. The coach wanted work on a move that saw defence transform into attack in the quickest, and most effective, way possible, with only two outfield players acting as opponents and a goalkeeper to stop any shots.

During this exercise, the Blaugrana focussed on using the wings to send over crosses to the strikers before the players changed positions in order to give all the forwards a chance to play out wide and in the centre.

Oranges v Blues

180807-1_x8x.jpgBefore finishing in training, the Barça squad enjoyed a nine-against-nine match. Wearing orange were Víctor Valdés, Gianluca Zambrotta , Rafael Márquez, Sylvinho, Andrés Iniesta, Thiago MOtta, Gio Dos Santos, Ronaldinho and Thierry Henry, while in the blue were Albert Jorquera, Éric Abidal, Gaby Milito, Oleguer, Touré Yaya, Xavi, Juliano Belletti, Leo Messi and Samuel Eto'o.

The game was won by the orange team, 3-2. Zambrotta, Ronaldinho (penalty) and Iniesta scored for the winning team, while Messi netted a brace for the losers.
Last session for the internationals

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B team duties
Niether Jesús Olmo and Marc rosas were present again on Saturday as they were called up by the B team to appear in the friendly game against CE Sabadell.

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