Catalan kings: the management secrets of Barcelona Football Club (The Economist)

A POPULAR debate among football obsessives concerns whether Barcelona—Barça to its fans—is the best club soccer team the world has ever seen. Is it better than the Santos of the 1960s (which was home to Pelé)? Or the AC Milan of the 1990s? The answer is gloriously unclear. But Barça is surely the finest team in the world right now: the standard against which other ball-kickers must measure themselves. Consider the evidence. Barça recently beat its old rivals, Real Madrid, to win the Spanish league. It boasts the best player in the world: Lionel Messi. It goes into the European Champions League final at Wembley on May 28th as the clear favourite (though it would be foolish to underestimate Manchester United).

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