Tuesday, October 20, 2009

Barça v Rubin Kazan: Did you know…

Barça and Rubin Kazan meet on Tuesday in a historic game for the Russian club, who have never played a Spanish team before. The following are some items of trivia associated to the game.

Barça have played Russian League teams four times at the Camp Nou, and have won three of them and lost one.

- The only defeat was in a game Barça manager Josep Guardiola will remember, because he played in it. That was in the 1992/93 season, when CSKA won 2-3 to end Barça’s dream of winning the Champions League for the second year in a row.
The last visit from a Russian team was in 2002/03, when Frank de Boer scored the winner (1-0). Puyol and Xavi played that day, October 23, 2002, while Valdés and Iniesta were on the bench.

- Both teams are currently top of their respective leagues, and both by just one point, although the situation is very different in Russia as they have already played 25 games.

- The Russian captain, Sergei Semak, has already experienced defeat to Iniesta, Puyol and Xavi. Spain beat Russia twice in the 2008 European Championships, both in the group stages and the semi finals.

Rubin Kazan have one player, César Navas, who knows all about Barça and La Liga. In March 2009, he went to the Russian club from Racing Santander. Curiously, one of his last games was a 2-1 defeat to Barça, the very game in which Messi scored the 5,000th goal in Barcelona history.

- South African Sibaya, of Rubin Kazan, can play on Tuesday, having served his three match suspension.

- Rubin Kazan won last week (2-1) for the first time in six games.

- Barça is one of only four teams in the current Champions League that have yet to concede a go

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