Sunday, December 4, 2005

Barça clash against Villarreal today

The clash of this weekend will encounter first and third-place squads FC Barcelona and Villarreal at the latter's El Madrigal stadium. The match promises to provide some good open soccer, mostly provided by the approximately 50 percent of players on the field from Latin America. Argentines Lionel Messi, for Barcelona, and Juan Román Riquelme, of Villarreal, will be in charge of the attack. Ronaldinho will be on the field with the happiness of getting the Golden Ball this week.

Missing from Barcelona's lineup will be midfielder Xavi Hernández, who suffered a leg injury in practice on Friday and will be out for the season, doctors said yesterday. Xavi, a vital component of Barça's attack, tore a ligament in his knee when his leg became stuck in the wet practice field and his body's inertia severed the ligament.

Team doctors said that Xavi will need at least six months to recover, ending the midfielder's season with Barcelona, but leaving a question mark as to whether he'll be available for the World Cup in Germany next year.