Predicted Barcelona Lineup To Face Espanyol
Barcelona made easy work of Osasuna as they thrashed the 20th placed side by a 7-1 margin. Leo Messi opened the scoring and the rest followed, as they scored 5 goals in the second half to go on a scoring spree.
Barcelona seem to be in a confident mood after beating Real Madrid to go top of the La Liga table. They now face 9th placed Espanyol on Saturday and the mid-table side can expect a rampage to arrive at them when the Catalan giants take the field.
Enrique made a few changes to the team for the game against Osasuna and tried a 3-back formation. However, he should return to the usual 4-back set-up for this tie.
The news is the same, as there were no injuries to players who were involved in the game against Osasuna. The absentees are Rafinha, Vidal and Mathieu who remain unavailable due to injuries. Enrique made 5 changes to the team during mid-week but should include the first team stars like Suarez back in the mix.
Probable Barcelona XI:
Manager: Luis Enrique
Marc-Andre Ter Stegen (GK)
Ter Stegen has managed to make the Barcelona gloves his own and should start this game against Espanyol.
Sergi Roberto (RB)
Roberto did not start against Osasuna as Enrique chose to field a 3-back set-up. But he should be back for this game and will start at the right-back position.
Gerard Pique (CB)
Pique is always immense for Barcelona and that won’t change on Saturday as well. He should start for the Catalans.
Samuel Umtiti (CB)
Umtiti has been rock solid this season and there is no doubt about his involvement from the get-go. A sure starter.
Jordi Alba (LB)
Alba was one of the 5 players who did not start the mid-week game and hence he should start in his usual left-back role.
Sergio Busquets (DM)
Busquets is the most important cog in Barcelona midfield and he is an assured starter. He will hope to continue the good form he has found in recent weeks after suffering for a long period during the season.
Ivan Rakitic (CM)
The Croatian should start for Barcelona despite the inconsistent form of his. He will play alongside Busquets and Iniesta in a midfield three.
Andres Iniesta (CM)
The maestro should be back for this tie and his ever graceful presence on the pitch is always a joy to watch and that shouldn’t change this weekend too.
Lionel Messi (RW)
Messi is truly back in form again after a blip against Juventus in the Champions League. He seems to be really determined to win the title and it will be virtually impossible to stop him if he gets going.
Paco Alcacer (LW)
He scored a brace against Osasuna and should start on the left-wing in the absence of the Brazilian superstar, Neymar Jr.
Luis Suarez (ST)
Suarez was rested for the mid-week game but should be back in the line-up for this one. He will start as the lone striker in this 4-3-3 formation.