Thursday 21 November 2013

Catalonia and Basque Country announce festive friendlies

Catalonia and the Basque Country have confirmed their traditional festive friendlies for 2013 with the autonomous regions hosting Cape Verde and Peru respectively.

Friendly...the Basques and Catalans met in 2007
The Catalans will take on the African side, who reached the quarter-finals of the 2013 African Cup of Nations, at the Estadi Olímpic Lluís Companys in Barcelona with a 19:00 kick off on December 30th.

The Federació Catalana de Futbol have chosen African opposition for the second game running, after drawing 1-1 with Nigeria in January, having stating that it was "impossible for logistical reasons" to play a South American or European team.

Basque Country will play for the first time at the new San Mamés after the home of Athletic Bilbao was opened in September. The visit of Peru on December 28th will mean the Basques will face a CONMEBOL side in successive years for the first time after they thrashed Bolivia 6-1 last December.

Both teams will be expected to include big name players in their squad. Barcelona stars Cesc Fàbregas, Xavi and Gerard Piqué will be among those likely to be included in the Catalonia team with Fernando Llorente, Javi Martínez and Xabi Alonso all having previously turned out for Basque Country.

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