It's All About...FC Barcelona

Chris PotterCorrespondent IJanuary 14, 2009

As of today, I will be bringing you my fellow football enthusiasts here at B/R a brief insight into different football clubs from across the globe, both big and small.

These findings will come in the "10 Things You May Not Know About..." format.

Yet these articles will differ from the average hurried-together factfile you may find in The Sun the day before Tottenham taken on the mighty Anorthosis Famagusta or Chelsea travel to Botev Plovdiv.

And, for the sake of being different (and also because I dread the thought of having to find ten things to write about FC Marsaxlokk of Malta), there will be SEVEN fascinating facts. 

The facts will be informative for the most part, often humorous, and utterly ludicrous. 

I hope to offer you an oversight of the history of each club and insight into moments that have shaped the clubs' fortunes and history.

Please feel free to share your knowledge or ignorance on all matters related to the club in question. I look forward to hearing from you and hope you enjoy what would be describe in the film industry as a featurette.


Where do I start?

Well—first up is FC Barcelona. I may as well start at the top...   



1. FC Barcelona was formed by a young group of Swiss, British and Catalan footballers led by Hans Gamper in 1899.

2. There are many legends about the choice of the club's iconic "Blaugrana" (blue and grain) colours.

One states that Gamper adopted the colours of his favourite team FB Basle, for whom he played professionally. Another (surely more plausible) legend claims that the colours were inspired by a pen that one of the founding members fixed his eyes on at the first club meeting.

3. The club's fans are affectionately—and rather inappropriately—named "els culers"(which translates literally as "those with the bums"). This name originates from the fact that the first stadium that the club played its matches at was not fully enclosed and passers-by were often treated a rather cheeky view if you know what I mean.  

4. The club anthem, composed in 1974 to commemorate its 75th anniversary, is sung with passion and pride:

Tot el camp (All of the stadium)
és un clam (is a clam)
som la gent blaugrana (we are the Blue and Grains)
Tant se val d'on venim (it doesn't matter where we come from)
si del sud o del nord (whether from the south or north)
ara estem d'acord, ara estem d'acord, (now we are united, now we are united) 
una bandera ens agermana. (by a flag which brings us together like brothers)
Blaugrana al vent (strength with the Blue and Grains)
un crit valent (bravely we chant)
tenim un nom el sap tothom: (we have a name that everyone knows)
Barça, Barça, Baaarça! (Barca, Barca, Baaarca)

Jugadors, seguidors, (Players, fans)
tots units fem força. (together we are strong)
Son molt anys plens d'afanys, (for many years we have been earnest)
son molts gols que hem cridat (many goals we have cheered)
i s'ha demostrat, i s'ha demostrat, (and we have shown, we have shown)
que mai ningu no ens podrà torcer. (that nobody will ever tear us apart)
Blaugrana al vent (strength with the Blue and Grains)
un crit valent (bravely we chant) 
tenim un nom el sap tothom: (we have a name that everyone knows)
Barça, Barça, Baaarça! (Barca, Barca, Baaarca)

5. Franco's dictatorship intervened when it was understood that the Catalan giants had signed the legendary Argentinian forward Alfredo Di Stefano from River Plate. In an attempt to slow Barca's meteoric rise to the top of Spanish football, the government demanded that Di Stefano played for two seasons for Real Madrid as well as two with The Blaugrana.

6. Barcelon'a current stadium El Camp Nou ('The New Field') is due for a makeover by famous British architect Sir Norman Foster, who will construct an outer shell of colourful Gaudiesque tiles whose sparkle will lead the club into the modern an estimated cost of €250 million!!!  

7. FC Barcelona also boasts successful rugby, basketball, hockey, ice hockey, ice skating, volleyball, baseball, roller hockey, handball, and five-a-side football clubs.