Barcelona are off to a traditional high-flying start to their new La Liga season as they thrashed Real Betis 6-2 at Camp Nou on the opening day. The Blaugrana travel to San Mames on Sunday to take on Athletic Bilbao. Ernesto Valverde’s boys must have wished for a better start to their La Liga campaign. They faced a 2-1 defeat against Sporting Gijon on the opening day, a side that somehow managed to stay in La Liga last season.
Luis Enrique’s boys were at their best as they kicked off their La Liga campaign. Last season’s European Golden Boot winner Luis Suarez bagged a hat-trick while Barcelona heartthrob Lionel Messi scored a brace. Arda Turan, who had a difficult first season at the Catalan club is relishing Neymar’s absence as the Brazilian was leading his nation to Olympic glory. The Turkish international was on the scoresheet as Barcelona cruised to a stunning start to the new season.
We can expect a signature San Mames audience attending the game and it is the headliner La Liga fixture of the weekend. Here is the Barcelona predicted lineup for this crucial encounter.
It remains unclear who will start under the bar or Barcelona against Athletic Bilbao. We expect Marc-Andre Ter Stegen to start ahead of new signing Jasper Cillessen. Sergi Roberto is likely to keep his place in the right-back position. Gerard Pique and Samuel Umtiti are likely to remain the centre-back pairing. Jordi Alba is likely to play in the left-back position.
Sergio Busquets is an obvious choice in defensive midfield. The Spaniard plays a key role in Barcelona’s system acting as the bridge between defence and attack. With Busquets protecting the back four, Ivan Rakitic will pair up with Denis Suarez in the middle of the park as Andres Iniesta still works on his comeback from injury.
Both Messi and Suarez were on fire last weekend against Real Betis. Messi scored two and created another while Suarez was as lethal as ever bagging an impressive hat-trick. Messi will keep his place on the right flank while Suarez will spearhead the attack for the Blaugrana. Arda Turan did a good job to fill the void of Neymar with one goal and one assist last week and will keep his place on the left flank.