The La Masia: A Barcelona success story

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The La Masia: A Barcelona success story
Barcelona is currently described as one of the best clubs in not only Europe but also the world. The reason why they are considered the best is not because they are rich or they have a lot of trophies.
The basic reason why they are so famous at the moment is because they have created outstanding players in the history of football. The Spanish side that won the FIFA World Cup 2010 consisted of no less than eight Barcelona players.
It is a record set by any national side that has played. Eight is the highest amount of players that have featured from the same club in a national team.
Recently, the Catalan giants represented three players in the Ballon d’Or 2010.
All three of them were the finalists for the award and that is definitely an achievement for any club.
Their youth academy, the La Masia is definitely an asset for them and that all three of the finalists that reached to this stage came through the youth ranks of the La Blaugrana’s youth project.
When Xavi Hernandez first broke into the first team, Josep Guardiola was the first choice centre midfielder.
While Xavi used to train, Josep Guardiola started to look uncertain of his future. The journalist often saw Xavi “the one” to replace the number 4 and later the Spanish maestro managed to put Josep Guardiola out of business.
However, Josep Guardiola had other plans for the team. The Catalan midfielder always saw the 15-year-old midfielder, Andres Iniesta, as the best future prospect.
The current Barcelona coach “jokingly” said that Andres Iniesta is the sort of player who would “put all of us out of business.”
The academy was basically started by the Dutch football legend, Johan Cruyff, who changed things round of the La Blaugrana.
Cryuff decided to make an academy where the team could build “the perfect future star” and he achieved what he wanted to as many came to the screen for the Catalan Giants.
Johan Cruyff’s mentor, Rinus Michels, taught him total football and he introduced it in the Spanish side and became a successful manager.
After the academy was made, it was another Dutchman, Louis Van Gaal, who continued the successful story of the La Masia.
Louis Van Gaal also managed to achieve a lot while being the boss of the Catalan side and later he was succeeded by Frank Rijkard who managed to coach, another Ballon d’Or winner.
Louis Van Gaal wanted to make a team that consisted of all La Masia graduates and, Xavi Hernandez and Andres Iniesta were the answer to his problems.
Currently, Barcelona has taken a decision to move out of the La Masia facility after the year 2012.
However, with such great success coming from the academy and with three Ballon d’Or finalists all being graduates of the youth programme, they just might not want to quit after all.
The Spanish Champions are definitely relying too much on the academy at the moment and they need them in the future to continue the production of extraordinary young players. 


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