Adéu Victor Valdes – Why VV needs to go.

At home, feet up on the sofa. It’s 3 AM and you’re about halfway through yet another El Clasico. As you sit there, being chewed apart by the goddamn mosquitoes and seeing FC Barcelona succumb to yet another defeat, you wonder what the heck went wrong.

What happened to that team of lore that could out pass and out fox the opposition into submission – no matter what stadia, what support or what ghastly kit they had on. Three defeats in their last five fixtures does not bode well for an FC Barcelona known and expected to conquer all before them. It frustrates. And I sit here looking for something exciting to happen – waiting, hoping. Praying even.






And then it does, the final whistle blows and up storms our captain, no not Tarzan-haired Puyol (I’ve got another article just about him) and nor is it Mr. Tiki-Taka Xavi Hernandez – its Victor Valdes. And as he storms, he goes not to congratulate his fellow players on a game well played. Nor does he storm off the field and into the tunnel, instead going for the referee. Hurling expletives of an unspeakable nature (You son of a b**ch, you coward being the best and least hurtful of them allegedly) he gets two yellow cards in thirty seconds and subsequently a four match ban from the RFEF (Spanish Football Federation).

I sit there, gawking at my screen, clapping sarcastically like Rio Ferdinand would do a few days later to Cuynet Cakir at Old Trafford after sending off Nani. Victor Valdes had shocked me yet again. And not in a good way.


Now if you are a goalkeeper of any caliber at all, or have ever EVER played in goal, you will know that it is a cardinal sin to let the ball pass through your body and the near post and across the line to alter the score. Yet, more than once this season and in the past, VV has done that. Time and time again. And we took it on the chin, because we could outscore the opponents. We could play out from the back again and win matches. But as Barcelona stick to their pass and move style, teams are slowly figuring us out and it’s becoming more and more difficult to smack the back of the net five times a game than it used to be. So we need a better goalkeeper, our at least ours to do better between the sticks. At a time like this, you expect a man who spent his entire life in the admiration of Camp Nou and winning everything before him to be supportive, and to put in hard hours on the training pitch and come at it with everything he’s got. But, you would be sorely mistaken.

Valdes has always been an enigmatic fool. Brilliant on his day, keeping out the likes of everyone from Cristiano Ronaldo to Javier Mascherano (the own goal maestro) and on other days, flailing his arms like a fish out of water at weak shots and letting them go through him.  The fact that he isn’t going to renew his contract is all right. The fact that he revealed it to media before the club was idiotic. When the team were recovering from the news that Vilanova needed to stay for longer durations in New York for cancer treatment, this team needed its senior players to step up and make themselves heard. Xavi and Puyol fulfilled the role superbly, and Valdes? Well he threw a curve ball at the club and left us all wondering if he should be booed or cheered.



Valdes makes another error




Of course, after years of his brilliant service, the Camp Nou applauded him. But ever since that night, he has been well below par and been called into question one too many times. For a club like FC Barcelona, a goalkeeper is their basis, one who has not only good reflexes and range but also a brilliant first touch and a passing ability. For this reason alone, we have stuck with Valdes all these years. But I feel its finally time to cut our losses and let him go.

After all, at thirty plus, and with two years left on his contract he wouldn’t command a huge fee. Nor would too many clubs be interested in an old goalkeeper with a knack for disrupting the dressing room. His comments to the media, while with no initial intent to damage the club or its morale, have had a telling effect. Barcelona are nervous in possession like they have never been before, and it all stems from not knowing if they can trust the man in the penalty area to do his job or not.


I’m hoping I’m seeing the last of Victor Valdes, if not from now on then from next season I’d like to see someone else between the Barca posts. Goodbye Victor. You served us well, it’s time for you to move on. Adios.

Taronish Elavia

Supports FC Barcelona, sells lies in the form of advertising. Occasionally writes poetry, always makes people smile.