After a few difficult games and performances, Barca are looking to bounce back this afternoon as we face Deportivo Alavés live from the Montjuic. We’re in a little bit of a rough patch right now. Every team goes through one, and we’ve experienced a bit of it now. The most important thing for us as a team, club and fan base is not to spread negativity. Not to overreact and start blaming everyone. We need to pull together as a group and fight back. This team, this coach and this club is capable of doing just that. We’ve all seen it. And today is a opportunity to get back on the right track. That’s the most important thing. Alavés will provide their own sets of challenges, like every team in this league does. But the most encouraging thing is that we’re finally starting to recover our full squad.
Xavi confirmed in his pre Alavés press conference yesterday that Frenkie De Jong will be fit and available for our game after the international break against Rayo. That in itself is huge news. We as a team have seriously missed him. I think even particular players like Romeu have missed him as well. It was a very interesting press conference from Xavi. And what i loved most about it was the fact that he highlighted the mains issues of the team and didn’t hide away from taking . All of that, will help us move forward. One aspect he mentioned was the positional play of the team.
I also think that even though we’re 13 games into the season, he still hasn’t figured out his best lineup and setup yet. That’s mainly because of all the injuries to key players, so that’s understandable. But hopefully over the course of the break and the next few games, we can start to see some consistency in the lineup. Consistency in the lineup, will only help us in bringing more consistency with results and performances. And that is the most important thing.
Usually right now wed look at our opponents. But considering the last few games, i just want to focus on Barca. And highlight some of my ideas for how we can bring some energy to the team.
It seems like the little magician, Pedri will finally be starting a game against Alavés. I doubt hell complete the 90 as it is still early days. But seeing him back in the lineup is exciting. For me, one thing we’re missing right now is a spark. A spark of energy. Romeu is a solid player, but he and Alonso slow the games down too much. Whereas with Gavi playing in that deeper role alongside gundogan. It feels like we operate with a lot more tenacity. I’d also look at Lamine Yamal. He is an incredible talent. And one thing i love most about him, even at this early age, he always makes something happen. Raphinha has struggled for constancy since returning from injury. So i would definitely be starting Yamal today. In defence, here’s where id make a change.
This season, we have been worse defensively than last. We built a strong foundation last season with B.A.C.K, so for this game today. Just to see how it goes, i would lineup with Balde, Araujo, Kounde and Christensen back in the lineup. Cancelo has also played a of football for us, so he could do with a rest. Also, as Araujo came off with fatigue in midweek, if he isn’t ready to start again, id go with Iñigo instead. Go back to what we know works. And just see how it goes. We need to be more clinical and solid in defence and i feel that could be a good way of starting it.
My starting lineup:
Kounde- Christensen- Araujo- Balde
Gavi- Gundogan- Pedri
Yamal- Lewandowski- Felix