Barcelona will lock horns with Atletico Madrid at the Wanda Metropolitano Stadium on Saturday night looking to secure maximum points on the road. The Catalans are coming into this game in good form after earning back to back victories against Dynamo Kyiv and Real Betis respectively. However, they can expect a tough night’s work as Diego Simeone’s men won’t be any pushovers this weekend.
Barca boss Ronald Koeman will revert to a 4-2-3-1 formation for this clash and might name Philippe Coutinho in his first-team after the Brazilian playmaker recovered from his hamstring injury and returned to training this week.
4-2-3-1 Barcelona Predicted Lineup To Face Atletico Madrid
Marc-André ter Stegen will feature in goal for the Catalan outfit after shipping in three goals in his past two starts across various competitions. Gerard Pique will resume his centre-half partnership with Clement Lenglet as they try to neutralise the threat of Atletico Madrid’s Joao Felix and Angel Correa during the game.
Sergi Roberto will probably get another chance to impress at right-back while Jordi Alba looks to produce a productive display on the other flank as the left-back. Koeman will ask both his full-backs to pick and choose their moments to get forward and make some overlapping runs in behind the opposition defence.
Frenkie de Jong and Miralem Pjanić will anchor the midfield for Barca as they focus on engineering some decent chances for their teammates in the attacking third. The dangerous trio of Ousmane Dembele, Philippe Coutinho and Lionel Messi will play just ahead of them as part of Koeman’s attack.
Messi will once again carry most of the goal-scoring workload in the final third. However, Coutinho will be desperate to make up for lost time because of his injury by putting in a match-winning display this weekend. However, the Brazilian’s inclusion could mean that Pedri will have to drop to the bench but might get a chance to catch the eye as a second-half substitute if needed.
Antoine Griezmann will get another opportunity to lead the charge for Barcelona down the middle. The French forward will have to figure out a way to create some problems for the Atletico centre-backs this weekend.
Martin Braithwaite will make up the numbers on the Catalans bench but could make an impact in the second 45 minutes if Koeman calls upon his services.
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