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Why are Manchester City playing Barcelona at the Nou Camp?

Rory O'Callaghan

Published 
| Last updated 

Why are Manchester City playing Barcelona at the Nou Camp?

Featured Image Credit: Alamy

The new Premier League season is now well underway, with defending champions Manchester City making a strong start in their bid to win a third consecutive title.

Pep Guardiola's side beat West Ham 2-0 away from home in their opening match of the campaign before thrashing Bournemouth 4-0 at the Etihad on Saturday.

City then came from 3-1 down to dra 3-3 with Newcastle at St James' Park on Sunday before travelling to Catalonia to take on Barcelona in a friendly at the Nou Camp on Wednesday.

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Barcelona announced the fixture at a press conference in June, attending by former Barca manager Guardiola and current club president Joan Laporta.

They were joined by the club's former goalkeeper and coach, Juan Carlos Unzue, who was diagnosed with amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS) two years ago.

All proceeds from the match are set to go to Fundacion Luzon, an ALS research charity.

"This is an honour for us," Guardiola said at the time.

City face Barcelona at the Nou Camp on Wednesday (Image: Alamy)
City face Barcelona at the Nou Camp on Wednesday (Image: Alamy)

"We want to thank Barca for inviting us to this wonderful venue. We will tell our players why this matters so much.

"It is admirable, and Unzue's words show that. I am very happy to come. By doing this, Barcelona has once again shown why we are the best."

While the reasons behind the unusual fixture are undoubtedly honourable, the decision to stage it three weeks into the new Premier League season – and just three days before the club's next home game against Crystal Palace - has raised a few eyebrows among supporters.

All proceeds from the match are set to go to Fundacion Luzon, an ALS research charity (Image: Alamy)
All proceeds from the match are set to go to Fundacion Luzon, an ALS research charity (Image: Alamy)

"Why is Man City playing a friendly after the PL season starts?," wrote one fan on Twitter.

Despite the charity match's close proximity to the Palace game, Guardiola has suggested he will field a strong team in Catalonia.

"We're going to bring all the big guns, don't worry," Guardiola insisted at the press conference in June.

The match will kick-off at 2030 (BST) and is available to watch through Manchester City's CITY+.

Topics: Manchester City, Barcelona, Football, Premier League, La Liga

Rory O'Callaghan
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