Writer: Arab Jacques
Date:Thursday June 26 2008
Barcelona were lucky last year, after Thierry Henry converted a penalty kick at the 2nd attempt to give the Spanish giants a 1-0 win at Tannadice.
The result should have gone Dundee United`s way, but captain Barry Robson`s headed goal was unfairly ruled out by the referee during the middle stages of the 2nd half.
Dundee United dominated in the glamour friendly against the Catalan side, which included great players like Ronaldinho, Deco, Zambrotta, Thuram and Xavi infront of a full-house at Tannadice.
This year wont be any easier for Barcelona, asthey return to the city of Dundee for another friendly on the 26th of July.
Club captain Lee Wilkie is looking forward to giving former Arsenal striker Thierry Henry a tough time.
"Playing Barcelona last season was amazing and, to be honest, I genuinely thought it was a one-off."
"The fact it has come round again is fantastic and the whole club is looking forward to it," admitted Wilkie to the SportingLife website.
"I think last season's game had a big impact on our season because we got such a boost from playing against the likes of Ronaldinho and Henry."
"We have players here now who didn't get in the team last season or who were not even here so this will give them the chance to play against some real superstars."
Barcelona have a new manager in Pep Guardiola, who has already promised sweeping changes at the Nou Camp, starting by telling Ronaldinho, Deco and Samuel Eto'o to find themselves new clubs.
However, a club the size of Barcelona is always going to attract the top names and Wilkie is sure that it will be exciting to play against them, no matter who they name in their starting line-up.
"Barcelona are going to lose a few players this summer but I'm sure they will bring plenty of new ones in," continued Wilkie.
"That's added some fresh excitement because we've been looking at the papers to see who they are signing to get an idea of who might turn up at Tannadice."
'It's great for the club, the players and the city that one of the biggest clubs in the world are coming here again.'
Dundee United have enjoyed an amazing record over Barca, beating them on 4 out of 4 competitive matches, including knocking them out of the 1986/87 UEFA Cup Quarter-Final stages,
The media made a big deal of last season`s friendly result, claiming Barcelona had beaten their United hoodoo with the sneaky 1-0 victory.
Although, in the grand scheme of things, only competitive results really matter and the friendlies are just a bit of fun.
Date:Thursday June 26 2008
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Stats: Dundee United v Celtic (Saturday August 22 2015)
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