Barcelona have one foot firmly planted in the UEFA Champions League semi-final with a one-goal victory against Manchester United in the first leg at Old Trafford. However, they would have to resume their La Liga title race this weekend with a trip scheduled to play bottom placed, Huesca.
Ernesto Valverde would seek to rest a few big names and regular starters for this fixture with everything in control on the domestic front. However, it would not be a comfortable afternoon for the Catalans as Huesca have gained momentum in the last few matchdays.
The team which is playing it’s very first season in the Primera Divison have drawn two of their last three encounters and lost one narrowly against Real Madrid. Barcelona should not repeat the mistake they made when they travelled to the Ceramica Stadium a few matchdays ago.
Ernesto Valverde would be without the services of Gerard Pique and Luis Suarez for this fixture. The duo have amassed five yellow cards this season and are thus suspended for this weekend. Thomas Vermaelen and Rafinha have not yet returned from injury and will not be a part of proceedings. Ousmane Dembele who recently made a return from injury could be given some minutes on the field to get back to the grove.
Second choice goalie, Cillesen is expected to start for this fixture against bottom-placed Huesca. The right-back position would be occupied by Nelson Semedo who even started at Old Trafford against Manchester United.
With Gerard Pique out of contention for selection for this fixture due to his suspension, Samuel Umtiti would be starting alongside Clement Lenglet. The latter has grown as a defender this season and cemented his place in the Barcelona starting eleven. Jordi Alba would slot into the last available position in defence.
A make-shift Barcelona midfield would be taking the field this Saturday afternoon as Ernesto Valverde would seek to give rest to regular starters ahead of Manchester United’s trip to the Camp Nou. Sergi Roberto would be starting in midfield on the right wing. Carlos Alena who was promoted from the junior side in December would be slotting in for Sergio Busquets. Arturo Vidal who would be returning from his suspension is expected to be starting on the right side of the midfield trio.
Lionel Messi would be starting on the left side of attack and is most likely to be partnered by Kevin Prince Boateng and Malcom Silva. Luis Suarez is out suspended from this fixture and would not even make the Barcelona bench. Ousmane Dembele could make an appearance off the bench in this fixture post his return from injury.
Semedo – Umtiti – Lenglet – Alba
Roberto – Alena – Vidal
Messi – Boateng – Malcom
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