Prematch : Barça vs Valencia. Back to Action

Our first game back from the international break sees Barça come up vs Valencia on Sunday at the Camp Nou. Facing Valencia any day is never an easy task, but when you  consider how poor we have been in recent games, it makes it even more daunting. One  thing that is in our favor however, is the home support. During the week it was confirmed  that the health government in Catalunya had authorized the return of fans at a full  capacity.

We’re in desperate need of a boost right now, and although I don’t expect the  stadium to be fully packed, we will definitely see more of an atmosphere. Which in times  like this, is much appreciated. The game tomorrow marks the beginning of an extremely  important month for our season. Following on from Valencia, Barça will face the first Clasico of the season vs Real Madrid. So a positive result tomorrow is more than crucial.  

How have Valencia started the season? 

Valencia started the season under a new coach, ex Getafe manager Javier Bordelas. We  all know from his days at Getafe that he doesn’t exactly make his teams play an attractive  style of football. In fact in the past, he’s approach to football has been described as very  negative. However , it has to be said that at the begging in of the season, they started off very well. Going unbeaten in their first 4 games, scoring many goals in process.

However,  since their 2-1 defeat to Real Madrid at home, things haven’t been so positive. Losing 3-1  to Sevilla in their next game and drawing in the next 2 games. In terms of our respective  positions in the table, Valencia find themselves use one position above Barça in 8th place.  Yes, you read that correctly, FC Barcelona are currently in 9th place in La Liga. You could  say we’re in a very similar position to where we were at the beginning of last season.  

It feels like I’m a broken record at this point when I say that the next game is going to be  very tricky. But that’s the current point we’re in at the moment. We just don’t know what Barça we’re going to see vs Valencia. Will it be similar to the impressive performances we had  against Levante and Real Sociedad, or will it be another disappointing lacklustre  performance like it was against Granada. We’re just so unpredictable at the moment that  it’s really hard to figure out how one game from the next is going to be. A major positive  for the game is of course the slow return of Ansu Fati to the starting lineup.

Few players back

It remains to  be seen whether Ansu starts the game tomorrow or not, but he will definitely feature. Not  only this, Alejandro Balde has reportedly fully recovered from the back injury he picked up  a few weeks ago. The long awaited debut of Sergio ‘Kun’ Aguero seems to be edging  closer and closer with his name expected to be on the squad list for the game. Me  personally, I’m absolutely buzzing to see him play for us. He’s the type of player we’re in  desperate need of. I think I can speak for the majority of us when I say I’m tired of seeing  Luuk De Jong lead the line for us.  

The game tomorrow is definitely one of the biggest of our season so far, so let’s just go  out and fight! 

Possible lineup for tomorrow’s game: 

I’m terms of the lineup, although we are slowly getting important players back from injury,  we do have a few suspensions and are going to be without key players like Pedri and now  Ronal Araujo. Araujo picked up a knock whilst playing for Uruguay and is expected to be  out for a couple of weeks. Whilst Pedri is slowly coming back from a relapse he had a few  weeks ago. Ter stegen will keep his place in goal, and he’ll be looking to improve on his  last performance against Atlet.

Jordi Alba is back from injury so he will probably start at  Left Back, although we could also go for Balde. Who has recently come back from injury  too. Centrally, due to Araujo’s absence I think Pique and Garcia will start. With Sergino  dest going back to his natural RB position. After weeks of having to play on the left side, 

In the midfield, I think it’s pretty self explanatory. Gavi will start in replacement of Pedri  who is still recovering from injury. Sergio Busquets and Frenkie De jong will complete the  midfield, 

The attack is where it gets a little more tricky to predict. Ansu is slowly racking up more  minutes in the team, but I still think it’s best not to rush him back into the starting lineup  just yet. Especially when you consider how long he has been out of action for. We just  need to take things nice and slow. Aguero is also expected to get the medical green light,  but I highly doubt he’ll be in the starting lineup.

Expecting more of the same?

All of that considered, we’re left with the same players up front as we had before. I really don’t want Luuk De jong to start  tomorrow, but I can just see Koeman playing safe and putting him in the team. Which  leaves Memphis on the left hand side. And Yusuf Demir should definitely start on the  right. I can not understand why koeman hasn’t picked him to start more regularly. He’s  such an incredibly talented player, who gives the team something different.  

Predicted Lineup: 

Ter Stegen- Alba- Garcia- Pique- Dest 

Gavi- Busquets- Frenkie De Jong  

Demir- Luuk- Memphis 

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