It’s FC Barcelona against Athletic Club Bilbao on Monday evening at the Camp Nou in the La Liga fixture.
Lionel Messi’s return to the starting 11 after a sent-off against the same club would be a key factor in this match. Blaugrana are currently sitting at 3rd position and have won seven out of their last eight consecutive away matches.
However, the only defeat came against Bilbao in the Supercopa de España final. The Lions have been enjoying their time under their new coach Marcelino but are 9th in the table.
FC Barcelona vs Athletic Club : Preview
FC Barcelona are in brilliant form and they are nearing the title race day by day. Although they are ten points behind current leaders Atletico Madrid, they are still in the hunt.
However, they need a win to pile up pressure on 2nd placed arch rivals Real Madrid. The Cules have less pressure now on the Copa del Rey as both the rivals are knocked out.
Lionel Messi would be keen on scoring in Camp Nou against the team that suspended him after a quarrel in the field.
However, the Basque side had won its last five consecutive matches and are high on confidence winning the Super Cup. Marcelino’s Giant killers would be keen on winning another time against the Catalonian club.
Out of 66 matches played between these two teams, Barca have won 42 whereas Athletic Bilbao won only 11 matches and the rest 13 ended as draws.
FC Barcelona form : W W W L W W W W D W
Athletic Club form : W W W W W L W L D W
FC Barcelona vs Athletic Club : Team News
Barca have a lot of issues regarding injuries and suspension. Sergio Busquets is suspended and Miralem Pjanic might take his spot. Ansu Fati, Philippe Coutinho and Gerard Pique are the injured.
Sergi Roberto might return at least to the bench as he had resumed training.
Athletic also have injuries and uncertainty of their starting lineup. It’s less likely that Inigo Martinez and Balenziaga might start.
Predicted Line-ups and Score:
Ronald Koeman might keep his faith in his 4-3-3 formation. Miralem Pjanic might get a spot in the starting 11.
Athletic Club might field in a similar lineup as their win against the Cules earlier. Marcelino might start with a 4-4-2 formation.
We are predicted a clean sheet and a win for the Blaugrana. The predicted score is FC Barcelona 3 – 0 Athletic Club.
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