And now it has been officially confirmed: The Champions League will return to Catalonia in August as Barcelona will host Napoli at the Camp Nou and not on a neutral venue as was previously discussed. This comes as a relief to a team that’s still very much struggling away from home.
But the papers’ focus today has been on rather different topics. Mundo Deportivo have gone with ‘The return, at home‘ title, focusing on the return leg that will see the Italians visit Azulgranas‘ safe haven.
Barcelona will indeed host Napoli at the Camp Nou on either the 7 or 8 of August and then, should they progress further into the competition, they’ll be aiming for that crown in the grand final that is to be played in Lisbon. The following stages of the competition will be played out between 12 and 23 August.
Sport, on the other hand, are celebrating one of the unsung heroes of the club as of late: Luis Suárez. Of course, everyone knows the Uruguayan has been an incredible servant to the Catalan badge since he was purchased but has also been a target of criticism as his form and physique started dwindling in recent years.
However, Suárez has been instrumental since his return from injury and has scored some crucial goals as of late, such as the one against Espanyol. And not only that but he has also surpassed László Kubala and is now Barcelona’s third-highest goal-scorer in the history of the club.
Whatever happens next to the Uruguayan Pistolero, his legacy is already quite safe.
Griezmann jokes when asked about his future following Copa championship: “Ask the president”
After being starved of trophies for two years, Barcelona have won silverware, defeating Athletic Bilbao in the final of the Copa del Rey by four goals to nothing. Lionel Messi was on target twice, while Frenkie de Jong and Antoine Griezmann got a goal each as Barça cruise to victory.
Following the game, Griezmann, who opened the scoring for Barcelona, spoke to the media, including about his future. He jokingly replied to that question by saying, “Ask the president.”
He said that he was very proud of the team and how they have managed to turn around the season, “Proud of the team and the work. We know that the season is very long and there are good and bad times. Keep enjoying the team and in the end the reward will come.”
He ended the presser on a celebratory note, saying, “We have to celebrate this title and enjoy it as a result of the work we’ve done.”
The Frenchman has been in excellent form throughout the Copa del Rey campaign and spearheaded the comeback against Granada in the Quarter-finals. He also assisted Gerard Pique for a last minute equaliser against Sevilla when all seemed lost, and has now been rewarded with the first Copa del Rey win of his career. Onto bigger and better things, hopefully.