'Black sheep' Edmilson apologises to team

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A home match against Recreativo Huelva would not normally worry Barcelona fans but the Catalan club are teetering on the brink of a crisis, making this evening's match more potentially troublesome.

Edmilson was forced to apologise to team-mates on Thursday after giving a television interview in which the Brazilian defender questioned the commitment of some of his colleagues, saying that the squad were like a family and every family had black sheep.

Frank Rijkaard, the coach, who is under pressure after Barcelona slipped four points behind leaders Real Madrid following the defeat to Getafe, said: "I'm not saying what Edmilson said was wrong, just it wasn't the appropriate way to do it. It is better to talk about it in the dressing room." He added: "We need to react on the pitch. It is the moment to face up and demonstrate they are committed and that we want to have a good season."

Real Madrid travel to Real Murcia tonight hoping to recall Arjen Robben after injury. Ruud van Nistelrooy and Gabriel Heinze remain doubtful.

The injury-hit Serie A leaders Internazionale have Marco Materazzi available for the first time in nearly three months as they prepare to play Atalanta tonight. However, Patrick Vieira and Luis Figo still head a star-packed treatment room. Fiorentina, in second, are without Adrian Mutu at struggling Reggina tomorrow while Juventus and Roma, who make up the chasing pack, will respectively be missing Giorgio Chiellini at home to Palermo tomorrow night, and Francesco Totti at Genoa this evening. Juve, though, can recall Pavel Nedved.

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