1996–97 FC Barcelona season

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FC Barcelona
1996–97 season
PresidentJosep Lluís Núñez
Head CoachBobby Robson
StadiumCamp Nou
La Liga2nd
Copa del ReyWinners
UEFA Cup Winners' CupWinners
Supercopa de EspañaWinners
Top goalscorerLeague:
Ronaldo (34)

All:
Ronaldo (47)

FC Barcelona enjoyed a decent season by winning both Copa del Rey and UEFA Cup Winners' Cup. The team extended its increasingly frustrating run without winning the league title to three years, as Real Madrid emerged as league winners. During the season, Ronaldo was the club's top scorer, netting 47 goals in all competitions. Upon winning both trophies, manager Bobby Robson left the club, eventually signing with PSV Eindhoven after spending a sabbatical year. He was replaced by former Ajax coach Louis Van Gaal. Top scorer Ronaldo would leave the club after this season in a surprise transfer to Inter Milan.

Squad[edit]

Squad at end of season[1][2]

Note: Flags indicate national team as defined under FIFA eligibility rules. Players may hold more than one non-FIFA nationality.

No. Position Player
1 Portugal GK Vítor Baía
2 Spain DF Albert Ferrer
3 Spain DF Abelardo
4 Spain MF Josep Guardiola
5 Romania MF Gheorghe Popescu
6 Spain MF José Mari Bakero (captain)
7 Portugal MF Luís Figo
8 Bulgaria FW Hristo Stoichkov
9 Brazil FW Ronaldo
10 Brazil MF Giovanni
11 Spain FW Ángel Cuéllar
12 Spain DF Sergi
13 Spain GK Carles Busquets
15 France DF Laurent Blanc
No. Position Player
16 Spain MF Óscar
17 Nigeria MF Emmanuel Amunike
18 Spain MF Guillermo Amor
19 Spain FW Juan Antonio Pizzi
20 Spain DF Miguel Ángel Nadal
21 Spain MF Luis Enrique
22 Croatia MF Robert Prosinečki
23 Spain MF Iván de la Peña
24 Portugal DF Fernando Couto
25 Spain GK Julen Lopetegui
26 Spain MF Albert Celades
27 Spain MF Roger
28 Spain GK Francesc Arnau

Competitions[edit]

La Liga[edit]

League table[edit]

Pos Team Pld W D L GF GA GD Pts Qualification or relegation
1 Real Madrid (C) 42 27 11 4 85 36 +49 92 1997–98 UEFA Champions League Group stage
2 Barcelona 42 28 6 8 102 48 +54 90 1997–98 UEFA Champions League Second qualifying round
3 Deportivo La Coruña 42 21 14 7 57 30 +27 77[a] 1997–98 UEFA Cup First round
4 Betis 42 21 14 7 81 46 +35 77[a] 1997–98 UEFA Cup Winners' Cup First round[b]
5 Atlético Madrid 42 20 11 11 76 64 +12 71 1997–98 UEFA Cup First round
Source: LFP
Rules for classification: 1) points; 2) head-to-head points; 3) head-to-head goal difference; 4) head-to-head goals scored; 5) goal difference; 6) number of goals scored.
(C) Champion.
Notes:
  1. ^ a b BET 1–2 DEP; DEP 3–0 BET
  2. ^ Since Barcelona, winners of 1996–97 Copa del Rey, was qualified for the 1997–98 UEFA Champions League, losing cup finalists Real Betis earned a spot in the first round of the 1997–98 UEFA Cup Winners' Cup.

Positions by round[edit]

Team ╲ Round123456789101112131415161718192021222324252627282930313233343536373839404142
Barcelona332212111111122322222232222222222222222222
Leader
1997–98 UEFA Champions League Second qualifying round

Matches[edit]

Goalscorers[edit]

34.BrazilRonaldo[3]
17.SpainLuis Enrique
9.ArgentinaSpainJuan Antonio Pizzi
7.BulgariaHristo Stoichkov
7.BrazilGiovanni
4.PortugalLuís Figo
4.RomaniaGheorghe Popescu
4.SpainOscar García
3.SpainAbelardo Fernández
2.SpainRoger García
2.SpainIván de la Peña
1.SpainJose Mari Bakero
1.SpainMiguel Angel Nadal
1.SpainSergi Barjuan
1.FranceLaurent Blanc
1.NigeriaEmmanuel Amunike

Copa del Rey[edit]

Round of 16

Quarterfinals

Semifinals

Final[edit]

Goalscorers[edit]

6.BrazilRonaldo
5.ArgentinaSpainPizzi
3.PortugalFigo
1.BrazilLuis Enrique
1.BrazilGiovanni
1.SpainOscar
1.Spainde la Peña
1.SpainNadal

Supercopa de España[edit]

UEFA Cup Winners' Cup[edit]

First Round

Round of 16

Quarterfinals

Semifinals

Final[edit]

Goalscorers[edit]

5.BrazilRonaldo
3.BrazilGiovanni
1.PortugalFigo
1.RomaniaPopescu
1.ArgentinaSpainPizzi
1.SpainNadal
1.PortugalCouto
1.SpainGuardiola

Timeline[edit]

Main source: Mundo Deportivo's archive

July[edit]

Monday 1
Competition
Signings Official
Alleged The 2,000 million pesetas demanded by PSV for Ronaldo are considered excessive, but the club has designed an operation to be able to finance it if needed.
Releases Official
Alleged
Renewals
Injuries
Financial The board approves a 9,930 million pesetas budget. The 1995-96 season ended in an income over 11,000 million, 30% over forecasts.
Already initiated refurbishing of Camp Nou and nearby instalations are to cost 1,719 million pesetas.
Legal
Organizational Núñez accepts the resignations of board members Evarist Murtra, José Ángel Merodio and Miquel Navas.
Statements Robson: I come to stay here forever. Or two years, at least.
Antràs (board spokesperson): Personally I doubt any player is worth such a sum of money [2,000 million pesetas]
Tuesday 2
Competition
Signings Official Koepke is to arrive to Barcelona the following day (Gaspart)
Alleged Barcelona would also have to pay FC Internazionale 130 million pesetas to sign Ronaldo due to a contract clause.
Sporting CP is willing to lower Amunike's price.
Releases Official
Alleged Jordi Cruyff, Lopetegui and Prosinecki ask for a free release, but Barcelona expects to earn income for their transfers.
Logroñés and Sevilla are interested in Lopetegui and Prosinecki respectively. Prosinecki may remain if no left midfielder is signed.
Renewals
Injuries
Financial
Legal The contention between Johan Cruyff and the club needs to be solved by August 30 for Robson to be registered as the first team's coach.
Organizational Antoni Pagés enters the board's directive committee.
Statements Robson: We don't fear Real Madrid. A team that has ended 22 points below the champion has to sign much more than one that ended just four below.
Wednesday 3
Competition
Signings Official Koepke passes the physical tests and returns to Germany for a conciliation act with Stuttgart. He denies any verbal or written agreement with that club.
Alleged Talks with Baía are reactivated through Mourinho.
Stoichkov has rejected offers from teams such as Arsenal and Newcastle, hoping Barcelona to sign him back.
Releases Official
Alleged Barcelona is to claim 40 million pesetas to Racing Santander if Alfaro is transferred to Atlético Madrid.
Renewals
Injuries Following the results a scan, Ferrer is expected to be recovered by the start of the pre-season.
Financial
Legal
Organizational
Statements Koepke: Baía had the advantage that he's younger than me, but now I am Barcelona's goalkeeper and I'll try to offer a good performance.
Koeman: Replacing Cruyff is very difficult, because there's no better coach than him and after his achievements it's going to be complicated for Robson.
Thursday 4
Competition
Signings Official Baía is quickly signed by Barcelona with an 8-year contract and lands in Barcelona the same day.
Köpke is discarded despite solving his conciliation act, with Gaspart alluding to a possible feud with Stuttgart or DFB making it a conflictive operation.
PSV issues an official statement declaring Ronaldo untransferrable and setting his price in 20 million dollars for following seasons.
Alleged
Releases Official Johan Cruyff accuses the board of releasing his son Jordi in order to hurt him.
Alleged Barcelona accepts to receive 450 million pesetas rather than 900 if Valencia signs Romário.
Renewals
Injuries
Financial
Legal
Organizational
Statements Vítor Baía: I'm a bit surprised, but very happy. It was all fixed in just two minutes.
Mourinho: Our main aim was Vítor Baía, if we could sign him why would we keep Köpke? He was a second option, we preferred the first one.
Friday 5
Competition
Signings Official Barcelona will only sign Amunike after a 6-month period on trial if he doesn't suffer injuries in the meantime. (Núñez in a press conference)
Alleged Barcelona is reported to have asked for Karembeu, publicly discarded by Real Madrid.
After Secretário signs for Real Madrid, Barcelona is said to be interested in two other Porto players, Paulinho Santos and Folha.
Releases Official
Alleged
Renewals
Injuries
Financial
Legal
Organizational
Statements Robson: I pressured the chairman a lot, Baía is one of the best goalkeepers in the world and a great team needs a great goalkeeper.
Saturday 6
Competition
Signings Official Ronaldo's adviser Alexandre Martins says the player has been suggested to focus in the upcoming Olympic tournament while they work in the matter.
Porto states they have rejected a 400 million pesetas offer for Paulinho Santos.
Alleged According to The Sun, Barcelona would be willing to offer up to 1,000 million pesetas for Tottenham's Sheringham.
Ginola may have offered himself to Barcelona.
Releases Official
Alleged Barcelona rejects an 600 million pesetas offer for Nadal from Manchester United.
Renewals
Injuries
Financial
Legal
Organizational
Statements Giovanni: Barcelona has a super team. And if also Ronaldinho joins us it will be something epic, magnificent.
Sunday 7
Competition
Signings Official
Alleged Barcelona would be willing to make an effort for Ronaldo "within rational limits" past the 2,000 million pesetas mark.
Releases Official Lopetegui will be the only discarded player to travel to the Dutch pre-season stage. (Mourinho via Mundo Deportivo)
Alleged Part of the board is reported to feel the strategy in the Amunike operation is bad for the club's public image.
Renewals
Injuries
Financial
Legal
Organizational
Statements Ronaldo: It moves me that the PSV fans ask me to stay, but my feelings are going to Barcelona.
Gaspart: We are being treated as the villains [in the Köpke affair] when we are actually the victims.
Monday 8
Competition
Signings Official PSV declares Ronaldo transferrable after a 4-hour meeting for a world record 2,600 million pesetas sum which claims Barcelona has already offered.
Stuttgart's chairman Mayer-Vorfelder denies having pressured Barcelona in the Köpke affair.
Stoichkov denies having reached a pre-agreement with Fenerbahçe announced by Ali Şen.
Alleged
Releases Official Beltrán (Mallorca) announces Carreras is about to be signed but some loose ends still remain.
Alleged Extremadura is about to make an offer for Barcelona B's García Pimienta.
Renewals
Injuries
Financial
Legal
Organizational It's reported that Jaume Parés will assume Josep Mussons' manager role as he replaces Antón Parera as executive vice president.
Statements Celades: We [homegrown players] know the environment better than anyone else, if you don't want pressure you should play in your village's team.
Tuesday 9
Competition
Signings Official Internazionale's Moratti states that his club can't compete with Barcelona's offer if the player's price is that high.
Alleged Negotiations with for Ronaldo intensify as Barcelona tries to lower PSV's demands.
Releases Official Núñez states that they have been aware of Manchester United's interest in Nadal for two weeks and that they are willing to initiate talks on the matter.
Alleged Manchester United rises his offer for Nadal to over 1,000 million pesetas.
Liverpool is reported to be willing to pay Sergi's 700 million pesetas release clause, but Barcelona sources remain esceptic.
Renewals
Injuries
Financial Barcelona receives the construction permit for the expansion of the Camp Nou's underground parking lot.
Legal
Organizational Núñez announces the creation of general manager and sporting director positions.
The club plans to create its own Internet website.
Statements Núñez: I have requested players' reports and realized there's a total lack of awareness. And for me that's extremely serious.
Wednesday 10
Competition
Signings Official
Alleged Ronaldo's signing is expected to be sealed imminently at 2,550 million pesetas after PSV refuses to lower the price in exchange for players.
Barcelona works on signing back Stoichkov from Parma after discarding Ginola due to its price.
Releases Official Advocaat states they aren't interested in Jordi Cruyff anymore and thus he won't play a role in the Ronaldo operation.
Alleged
Renewals
Injuries
Financial
Legal The trial for Barcelona and Johan Cruyff's contention is set for September 2.
Köpke doesn't exclude initiating legal actions as he claims his contract only stated a serious injury or failing the tests as reasons for termination.
Organizational
Statements Advocaat: In the Euro I didn't see a single player worth of carrying Ronaldo's boots. Seriously, Barcelona isn't aware of the kind of player they're signing.
Thursday 11
Competition
Signings Official The agreement with PSV for Ronaldo is sealed, with Barcelona having to deposit the whole fee in two weeks. Only the final talks with the player remain.
Alleged Sporting CP refuses Barcelona's proposal for Amunike.
Parma asks for a 750 million pesetas transfer for Stoichkov, but Barcelona isn't willing to pay over 400.
Barcelona is reported to be still be interested in Ginola as long as Newcastle accepts to lower their demands from 800 million pesetas to 400 million.
Releases Official Jordi Cruyff claims that he expects to stay in Barcelona and that he tales positively the lack of further contact since his last meeting with the board.
Núñez states that he has been reported by other clubs that Jordi is secretly dealing with them.
Alleged
Renewals
Injuries
Financial Núñez and Development's Santiago Sardà sign an agreement on the upcoming remodeling.
Legal
Organizational Jaume Parés and Ricard Maxenchs are named general manager and general secretary respectively.
Statements Gaspart: Back in the day I said we would make a great team. That was questioned, but I'm convinced that right now our squad is better than Real Madrid's.
Núñez: Have you asked Jordi why he wants to stay when the coach has already said he isn't in his plans?
Friday 12
Competition
Signings Official Barcelona signs Stoichkov back one year later on a two-year contract after persuading Parma on a 450 million pesetas transfer.
Alleged A pre-agreement with River Plate for Almeyda at 4.5 million dollars is reported in Mundo Deportivo.
Releases Official Cerezo states Atlético Madrid is interested in Jordi Cruyff if Barcelona allows a free transfer.
Alleged
Renewals
Injuries Blanc leaves the clinic where he was admited and is expected to join the team at the preseason stage.
Financial
Legal Sporting CP reports Barcelona to FIFA for an alleged breach of contract on Amunike.
Organizational
Statements Núñez: I was moved when his wife called me to tell me Hristo was sad and wanted to return. He's more thrilled than the first time.

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ http://www.footballsquads.co.uk/spain/1996-1997/laliga/barce.htm
  2. ^ "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 2013-04-25. Retrieved 2013-01-24.CS1 maint: archived copy as title (link)
  3. ^ **Also 1996–97 La Liga topscorer Pichichi Trophy."Rewind to 1997 Ronaldo's record-breaking season". ESPN.com. Retrieved 3 October 2019.

External links[edit]