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Barcelona vs Espanyol - Team news, lineups, Stats
Barcelona vs Espanyol – Team news, lineups, Stats

On Saturday, the Blaugrana will welcome Espanyol to the Camp Nou marking the dawn of a New Era under Xavi’s administration.

After Ronald Koeman was ousted with the Catalan giants in ninth place in La Liga, the Barca great will be tasked with bringing the team up the table.

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There is no doubt that Xavi is a long-term project. The financial state of the club dictates that, and it’s Xavi’s job to coach the plethora of young talent in the squad into a cohesive unit that can develop into a great team in the near future, hopefully at the same time as Barça can make big investments again to sign a few key world-class players to complement the young core.

Xavi’s main objective is to finish in the top four to qualify for next season’s Champions League. Barça are currently ninth in the table and need to make up for lost time under Ronald Koeman, and three points on Saturday are crucial.

 

Barcelona vs Espanyol Team News

Barcelona vs Espanyol,Barcelona vs Espanyol team news,Barcelona vs Espanyol - POSSIBLE LINEUPS

While we are yet to see how Xavi will set up Barcelona, the Blaugrana have typically used a 4-3-3 system, which he played in prior to and throughout his career, and he will most likely stick with it at first.

FBL-ESP-LIGA-BARCELONA-TRAINING
FBL-ESP-LIGA-BARCELONA-TRAINING

He takes over an injured list that includes Ansu Fati, Ousmane Dembele, Martin Braithwaite, and Sergio Aguero, who have all been ruled out of an attack that has struggled since Lionel Messi’s departure in the summer.
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All you need to know about the Barcelona derby: FC Barcelona vs Espanyol

Memphis Depay will continue to lead the line in the absence of those players, while Philippe Coutinho and new arrival Luuk de Jong might round out the front three.

Barcelona Legend Dani Alves is out until January, but midfielder Pedri is close to returning from injury, as are center-back Gerard Pique and full-back Sergi Roberto, all of whom will be assessed before the game.

Due to injury, Espanyol will be without Keidi Bare and Oscar Gil, but Vicente Moreno is unlikely to face any new problems.

Raul de Tomas, who has seven goals in 12 league appearances this season, will continue to be the star of their attack, with the former Real Madrid man earning his first two Spain caps as a result.

 

Barcelona Outs & Doubts: Ansu Fati, Pedri, Sergio Agüero, Ousmane Dembélé, Martin Braithwaite (out), Sergiño Dest, Nico González (doubt), Dani Alves (unavailable)

Espanyol Outs & Doubts: Keidi Bare, Óscar Gil (doubt)

Date/Time: Saturday, November 20, 2021, 9pm CET/WAT (Barcelona & Nigeria), 8pm GMT (UK), 3pm ET, 12pm PT (USA), 1.30am IST (India, Sunday)

Venue: Camp Nou, Barcelona, Catalonia, Spain

Referee: Carlos Del Cerro Grande

VAR: Ignacio Iglesias Villanueva

 

Key Stats

  • Barcelona have not lost any of their last 22 matches against Espanyol in La Liga (W17 D5). They have kept 16 clean sheets in this run.
  • Espanyol have drawn 38 games against Barcelona in La Liga (W34 L100), more than against any other opponent in the history of the competition.
  • Barcelona have collected just 17 points from their first 12 games in La Liga this season – their second-lowest tally at this point of a campaign in the 21st century.
  • Espanyol have won three of their last six games in La Liga (D2 L1), as many as in their previous 25 matches in the competition.
  • Barcelona star Jordi Alba has four assists in La Liga this season, including three in his last two games.

Barcelona vs Espanyol – POSSIBLE LINEUPS

Barcelona (4-3-3): Ter Stegen; Roberto, Piqué, García, Alba; Gavi, Busquets, De Jong; Demir, Memphis, Coutinho

Espanyol (4-2-3-1): López; Vidal, Gómez, Cabrera, Pedrosa; Morlanes, Herrera; Embarba, Darder, Puado; De Tomás

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