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Barcelona

Lionel Messi and Neymar score twice to lead Barcelona past Elche

Despite Barcelona's 6-nil win over Elche, ESPN FC's Alejandro Moreno still believes Barcelona can still make plenty of improvements in defence, but their mistakes can be forgiven with the likes of Lionel Messi and Neymar scoring goals in bunches.

Barcelona achieved a comfortable 6-0 away win against Elche in Matchday 20 of La Liga. Star attackers Lionel Messi and Neymar both had braces while centre-back Gerard Pique and winger Pedro added a goal each to lead the team's dominant performance. The club enjoyed 77 percent of possession, created 12 goal-scoring chances and attempted 11 shots, eight of them were on target.

Luis Enrique opted to rotate several of his key players in a match in which the Catalans were the clear favourites. Such theory...

 By Chris Wright

Barcelona star Dani Alves shows off new 'teddy bear' trainers

Proving, once again, that wealth is no measure of taste, Lionel Messi has taken to Instagram to share Dani Alves' brand-new trainers with the world.

Presumably costing an absolute fortune, Alves' customised sneakers are not only bright, glittery and golden -- they also have a teddy bear's head sewn into the tongues. Because? Fashion, that's why.

ESPN FC  By ESPN staff

#FCtalkingpoints: Cup upsets, Messi and Neymar, Ronaldo, money league

Bradford came back from two goals down to win 4-2 to send the Blues out of the FA Cup at Stamford Bridge.

Football always inspires debate, and this weekend was no exception. Here are five burning questions on the ESPN FC radar.

Vote and comment below or on Twitter using the hashtag #FCtalkingpoints.

Manchester United dominated possession but could manage only a goalless FA Cup draw with Cambridge United. Chelsea and Manchester City also endured embarrassing defeats in their FA Cup matches, while Arsenal survived a scare of their own vs. Brighton Hove and Albion.

What was the most surprising FA Cup result this weekend?

Financial advisors Deloitte released...

Luis Enrique has big decisions to make with Barcelona's lineup vs. Elche

Barcelona head coach Luis Enrique insists that his side fully deserved their 1-0 win over Atletico Madrid in the first leg of Copa del Rey quarter-finals.

All has gone right on the pitch for Barcelona since the fallout of the first result of the New Year and Wednesday night's narrow 1-0 Spanish Cup win over Atletico Madrid was another step in the right direction.

Make no mistake, the quarterfinal tie is far from won and next Wednesday will see another equally tight encounter in Atletico's Vicente Calderon between two sides with very differing styles that have matched each other very closely in recent duels.

BarcelonaBarcelona
Atletico MadridAtletico Madrid
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Psychologically, however, Barcelona...

Bayern Munich stay top as Barcelona make their move

ESPN FC's Tommy Smyth delves into Shaka Hislop's power rankings where Manchester City fell off the map, while Lyon, Benfica and Southampton all made moves forward.
Barcelona's talisman Lionel Messi scored a decisive goal against Atletico Madrid in the first leg of their Copa del Rey match.
Barcelona head coach Luis Enrique insists that his side fully deserved their 1-0 win over Atletico Madrid in the first leg of Copa del Rey quarter-finals.

The top four remain the same in Shaka Hislop's latest countdown but Barcelona's improved recent form sees them return to the upper echelon.

1. Bayern Munich (no change)

Mercifully, the Bundesliga season restarts in just over a week so this space will soon be filled, once again, by comments about actual games. In the meantime, why not catch up on Pep Guardiola declaring love for one of his players, Arjen Robben claiming he was bitten by a crocodile and a busy week for Pepe Reina

2. Real Madrid...

Gerard Pique returns to top form as Barcelona edge Atleti in Copa del Rey

Barcelona's talisman Lionel Messi scored a decisive goal against Atletico Madrid in the first leg of their Copa del Rey match.

Barcelona achieved a hard-earned 1-0 home win against Atletico Madrid in the first leg of the Copa del Rey quarterfinals. Lionel Messi scored for the Blaugrana, who enjoyed 71 percent of possession, created 12 goal-scoring chances and attempted seven shots, four of them on target.

Luis Enrique decided to field his preferred XI for the crucial clash against an opponent that, regardless of what manager Diego Simeone may say, can clearly be considered a major contender at both domestic and European...