Barcelona to pay tribute to terror attack victims by wearing special jerseys that feature the city name

The back of Barcelona’s shirts will feature the city rather than players’ names for Sunday’s game in homage to the victims of Thursday’s terrorist attack.

Thirteen people were killed and more than 100 injured when a driver in a white van mowed down pedestrians on La Rambla, a Barcelona boulevard popular with tourists and locals.

Barca announced hours after the attack that they would wear black armbands in Sunday’s La Liga opener against Real Betis, and on Friday revealed special shirts as well.

“Barcelona” will take the place of player’s names on the back of the shirts, with the hashtag #TotsSomBarcelona (“We’re all Barcelona”) on the chest next to the club crest.

Spain is holding three national days of mourning, while the weekend’s La Liga games will all feature a minute of silence before kickoff.

Barcelona coach Ernesto Valverde said on the club’s website:

“We would like to show our solidarity with the victims and their families in these difficult times. We are here to help in any way we can.”

Club president Josep Maria Bartomeu and directors Pau Vilanova and Maria Teixidor were among thousands of people who attended a minute’s silence observed at 11 a.m. in the city’s Placa de Catalunya, near the scene of the attack.

Spain’s King Felipe VI and Prime Minister Mariano Rajoy were also in attendance. Espanyol, also based in Barcelona, published photographs of their squad linking arms in a circle to pay their respects.

Real Madrid posted a picture of their first-team squad holding a minute’s silence at their training base, with Catalan club Girona, Granada, Levante and Real Mallorca showing similar images.

Former Barcelona and Manchester United goalkeeper Victor Valdes retires

Ex-Barcelona and Manchester United goalkeeper Victor Valdes has decided to retire from football, according to a report in El Mundo Deportivo.

Valdes, 35, had offers from Deportivo La Coruna, Real Betis and Las Palmas to continue to play after leaving Middlesbrough in the summer, but has opted to hang up his gloves and focus on his new TV production company.

Valdes’ agent Gines Carvajal would not confirm or deny the story when contacted by ESPN FC.

The former Spain international has set up Crazy4fun TV, which was launched on July 27, an international production company with bases in Barcelona, London and Abu Dhabi.

El Mundo Deportivo reports that Valdes will not only be behind the camera but is also expected to present a TV show that will feature former players that has already been sold to 12 countries.

Valdes left Middlesbrough in May after his one-year contract expired following the club’s relegation from the Premier League, making 28 appearances for the club.

Valdes was a huge figure in Barcelona’s success, playing 535 games and winning 21 titles, including six La Liga titles and three Champions League trophies in his 12 years at the club.

He left the Camp Nou at the end of the 2013-14 season and eventually signed for Manchester United in January 2015, but failed to impress at Old Trafford under Louis van Gaal and moved to Standard Liege on loan a year later.

As an understudy of Iker Casillas, Valdes made 20 appearances for Spain and was part of the squads that won the 2010 World Cup and the European Championship two years later.

Barcelona striker Luis Suarez out for one month; deals for Dembele and Coutinho ‘close’

Barcelona have suffered a blow on the eve of the new La Liga season after Luis Suarez was ruled out for a month with a knee injury.

Suarez was hurt during the second leg of the Spanish Super Cup against Real Madrid,which La Liga champions won 2-0 at the Bernabeu to clinch a 5-1 aggregate victory.

Suarez will definitely miss Barca’s league opener against Real Betis and further fixtures against Alaves and Espanyol, with the trip to Getafe on September 17 representing a potential opportunity to return to action.

A statement published on Barca’s website on Thursday afternoon said medical tests on Suarez had revealed damage to the back of his right knee.

Defender Gerard Pique, meanwhile, has injured an adductor muscle and could also miss Sunday’s meeting with Betis.

Reinforcements may be on their way, though, with Barca general manager Pep Segura on Wednesday claiming the signings of Philippe Coutinho and Ousmane Dembele, from Liverpool and Borussia Dortmund respectively, are “close”.

Spanish Super Cup Second leg – Asensio and Benzema strike as Real beat Barcelona to clinch Super Cup

Real Madrid 2-0 Barcelona (Agg 5-1)

Real Madrid produced a dominant display in the Spanish Super Cup second leg to beat Barcelona 2-0 on the night and lift the trophy after a 5-1 aggregate win.

Real Madrid were without their two most expensive players as Ronaldo began a five-game ban for pushing a referee and Bale was dropped to the bench to make way for 21-year-old Marco Asensio.

Marco Asensio, who also scored in the 3-1 first-leg win, gave them an early lead with an excellent 25-yard strike.

And Karim Benzema flicked up Marcelo’s cross and turned defender Samuel Umtiti to fire home a second with Barcelona rarely looking like coming back.

Real eased off in the second half, with the cup practically wrapped up, and Barca improved slightly as a result, with Lionel Messi and Luis Suarez hitting the woodwork.

In less than two years in charge, Zinedine Zidane has led Real to two Champions Leagues, and the 2016-17 La Liga title.

Neymar completes £196m world record transfer to PSG

Paris St-Germain have signed Brazil forward Neymar for a world record fee of 222m euros (£200m) from Barcelona.

The 25-year-old Brazil forward, whose legal representatives on Thursday paid Barcelona the world-record fee to terminate the contract which tied him to the Catalan giants, has signed a five-year deal with the Ligue 1 club.

The deal smashes the previous record set when Paul Pogba returned to Manchester United from Juventus for £89m in August 2016.

PSG announced Neymar’s arrival on their website just hours after Barcelona acknowledged the receipt of 222 million euros (£200.6million), preceding the move’s confirmation with a video posted on Twitter that teased: “He’s coming.”

Neymar said he has joined “one of the most ambitious clubs in Europe”.

“Paris St-Germain’s ambition attracted me to the club, along with the passion and the energy this brings,” he added.

“I feel ready to take the challenge. From today, I will do everything I can to help my new team-mates.”

“I am extremely happy to join Paris Saint-Germain,” Neymar said in a statement after signing his contract.

“Since I arrived in Europe, the club has always been one of the most competitive and most ambitious.

And the biggest challenge, what most motivated me to join my new teammates is to help the club to conquer the titles that their fans want.

“Paris Saint-Germain’s ambition attracted me to the club, along with the passion and the energy this brings.

I played four seasons in Europe and I feel ready to take the challenge.

From today, I will do everything I can to help my new teammates, to open up new horizons for my club and to bring happiness to its millions of supporters around the world.”

“It is with immense joy and pride that we welcome Neymar Jr to Paris Saint-Germain,” PSG president Nasser Al-Khelaifi said. “Neymar Jr is today one of the very best players in world football. His winning mentality, strength of character and

Barcelona confirm payment of Neymar’s £198m release clause before PSG move

Barcelona have confirmed payment for Neymar’s £198m buyout clause has been received.

Neymar’s world-record transfer from Barcelona to Paris Saint-Germain had hit a stumbling block after La Liga refused to accept the release clause for the striker, but the Spanish giants have now confirmed Neymar is no longer contracted to the club.

A Barcelona statement read:

“On Thursday afternoon Neymar’s legal representatives visited in person the club’s offices and made the payment of 222 million euros in the player’s name with regards to the unilateral termination of the contract that united both parties.

“As such, the club will pass on to UEFA the details of the above operation so that they can determine the disciplinary responsibilities that may arise from this case.”

Former Barcelona president Joan Gaspart compares Neymar’s move to PSG to Luis Figo transfer to Real Madrid from Barcelona

Former Barcelona president Joan Gaspart has told Cadena SER he believes Neymar’s pending move to Paris Saint-Germain is comparable to Luis Figo’s departure to Real Madrid.

Figo was denounced as “a traitor” and “a money-grabber” when he crossed the Clasico divide in 2000 for a world-record fee, and had a pig’s head thrown at him on one return to Camp Nou.

Neymar’s move to PSG is unlikely to provoke the same levels of anger because it is not to Barca’s greatest rivals, but a backlash has began.

A poster calling him “a traitor” and “a mercenary” has been seen at various locations around Barcelona, while the club have already removed him from advertising.

“I’ve seen similar situations but Neymar is in the same boat as Figo, who was alone but now has Neymar for company,” Gaspart said.

“I’ve seen great players like [Diego] Maradona and Ronaldo, who were better than Neymar, also leave Barca because other clubs paid their clauses.

“But they went with dignity, without making so much fuss. I’ve not liked his [Neymar’s] attitude with the club, with the supporters and with his teammates.”

Gaspart also voiced disappointment that another former Barca president, Joan Laporta, had used Neymar’s departure to criticise Josep Maria Bartomeu and the current board.

“It hurts me that people I respect are using this to blame the club,” he added.

“Neymar’s the one to blame, full stop.

“It’s not Barca’s fault. It’s not the board’s fault. It’s not the players’ fault… they did everything for him to stay. It’s Neymar’s fault.”

On Wednesday, Barcelona said Neymar had missed training and informed them he wanted to go to PSG, releasing a statement which said the Ligue 1 club would have to pay his full €222 million release clause.

However, when the player’s legal team arrived at the La Liga offices to pay the clause on Thursday, they were turned away and the payment was refused.

La Liga president Javier Tebas said earlier this week that he would not accept the money, accusing PSG of “financial doping” and threatening to report them to UEFA and the European Union for breaching financial fair play (FFP) regulations.