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01.04.2009 11:00

Barça's post-international reaction

Berta Brau

For the fifth time this season, Guardiola has been forced to prepare a match with only the rump of his squad. On the previous four occasions, the matches have ended in 3 draws and 1 victory. The aim in Nuevo Zorrilla is to make it 2 wins out of 5.

This is the fifth time this season that Guardiola has had to prepare a match with most of his first choices missing on international duty. The results reflect the difficulty of the situation, with three draws and just one win.

Minimum preparation

24-03-09_WEB_LUIS_ENRIQUE_01.jpgGuardiola is well aware of the problems posed by the international break. Normally, between 15 and 18 players from the Barça squad are called up by their national team managers. He’ll have to wait until Friday to have all his players back in training. Guardiola has warned on a number of occasions of the dangers posed by the matches played just after the international break as the results so far this season – three draws and a win - seem to demonstrate.

Two league breaks

fcb-racing_x13x.jpgThere were two league breaks during September and October, the first before the second matchday (Barça v Racing). Despite taking the lead with a Messi penalty, Racing equalised to take a point (1-1).

After the October break, Barça beat Athletic Club  0-1 thanks to a goal from Samuel Eto’o.

Midweek internationals

QM3D7532.jpgThe international matches returned in November. The players had less than five days midweek to travel and play with their national teams and afterwards could only manage a 1-1 draw with Getafe. Much the same happened in February when the players had to work hard to scrape a 2-2 draw against Betis, the equaliser coming in the 84th minute.
Barça's post-international reaction
Six points and no defeats
In the four matches played so far after international breaks, Barça has accumulated six points out of the twelve on offer. Although these results are not particularly good, Barça has managed to avoid defeat.

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