January 3 will be a day that plenty of children staying in Barcelona’s hospitals are going to be remembering for some time, as well as for a number of disabled people who were able to enjoy a moment in the company of the FC Barcelona players as they went on their traditional round of local medical centres to put a festive smile on so many faces.
Following on from the wonderful events at the Miniestadi, where 10,408 were in the terraces to watch the open-doors training session, the FC Barcelona Foundation’s Dream for a Gift programme enjoyed enthusiastic support from all members of the club’s playing and coaching staff, plus several directors, led by vice-presidents Jordi Cardoner and Jordi Mestre.
One of the largest groups went to Hospital de Sant Joan de Déu, where Neymar, Piqué, Sergi Roberto, Alcácer and Umtiti were joined by coach Robert Moreno and first vice-president Jordi Cardoner.
There was also activity at Hospital Vall d’Hebron, led by captain Andrés Iniesta, Rakitic, Denis Suárez, Jordi Alba and Jordi Masip, joined among others by assistant coach Juan Carlos Unzue and director Maria Teixidor.
Over at Hospital de Nens de Barcelona, Leo Messi and Luís Suárez were accompanied by vice-president Jordi Mestre and the commissioner for Espai Barça, Jordi Moix. At Hospital de Barcelona, head coach Luis Enrique was joined by psychologist Joaquín Valdés, players Busquets and Mathieu, director Pau Vilanova and CEO Òscar Grau, while Hospital de Sant Pau welcomed vists from Arda Turan and Mascherano.
And that was not all. Over at Hospital Universitari Germans Trias i Pujol de Badalona, Ter Stegen and Rafinha were the two players that delivered a moment of joy to such deserving fans, while Cottolengo Padre Alegre was honoured, among others, by André Gomes and Jasper Cillessen. Casa Ronald McDonald was the destination for Lucas Digne and Aleix Vidal.
Finally, at the Saló de la Infància it was Barça B’s Carles Aleñá, Marlon Santos and José Suárez who did the duties along with coach Felip Ortiz. They attended to the FC Barcelona Foundation’s stand on those premises where a mini-football match was organised in accordance with the club’s FutbolNet programme to promote positive values in sport.