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30.03.2009 12:11

Barça players play big role in international fixtures


Apart from Busquets, the remaining Barça players were on the pitch for virtually the whole time in their international fixtures over the weekend, racking up 696 minutes between them. In addition Piqué and Messi scored decisive goals.

Nine Barça players - Piqué, Xavi, Busquets, Henry, Messi, Cáceres, Alves, Eto’o and Keita – were on duty in 2010 World Cup qualifying fixtures. Apart from Sergio Busquets, who stayed on the bench for Spain, they played a key role in their games and totalled 696 minutes of match time.

Both Piqué and Xavi were key in Spain’s 1-0 win over Turkey in Madrid with the defender scoring the only goal of the game. France also picked up three valuable points against Lithuania (0-1) with Thierry Henry on the pitch for the whole 90 minutes.

Brilliant Messi

messiargentina.jpgIn South America, Leo Messi once again scored a great goal in Maradona’s competitive debut as Argentina manager. It was the first in the 4-0 thrashing handed out to Venezuela. The surprise in the group was the 2-0 win by Uruguay over leaders Paraguay in a key triumph for Martín Cáceres’s team in their qualification campaign.

Brazil drew with Ecuador with Dani Alves coming off the bench in the 24th minute and getting a yellow card.

Eto’o and Keita slip up

In Africa, Cameroon and Mali began the third classification phase with poor results. Cameroon lost to Togo by 1-0, while Mali could only draw 1-1 with Sudan. Both Eto’o and Keita played all 90 minutes.
Photos: www.fifa.com
Photos: www.fifa.com
Hleb plays on Wednesday
Alexander Hleb, the only Barça player yet to play in a competitive international game so far, will get his chance on Wednesday when Belarus go to Kazakhstan.

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