Suarez out, Messi in – Predicted Barcelona lineup vs Villarreal


Superstar Lionel Messi konnte dem Spiel des FC Barcelona in Granada keine Wende geben...
GRANADA, SPAIN - SEPTEMBER 21: Lionel Messi of FC Barcelona reacts during the Liga match between Granada CF and FC Barcelona at Estadio Nuevo Los Carmenes on September 21, 2019 in Granada, Spain. (Photo by Aitor Alcalde/Getty Images)

Barcelona will be looking to get back to winning ways as they host 7th placed Villarreal at the Camp Nou on Tuesday night.

The reigning La Liga Champions have been criticized for a lack-luster start to the season, one that has seen them winning only 2 of their opening five fixtures in the domestic campaign.

Defeat against Granada at the weekend means that this is now the Blaugranas’ worst start to a domestic campaign in over 25 years, with the club currently languishing at 8th place in the table.

Their home form, though, has been a source of much comfort for Ernesto Valverde and his men, as Barcelona have won each of the last 12 games that they have played at the Camp Nou stadium.

Which is why the omens are good for the Catalans to put their recent poor form behind them and clinch all three points against an upbeat Villarreal side on Tuesday.

How will Barcelona lineup against Villarreal?

Who is Ansu Fati
BARCELONA, SPAIN - SEPTEMBER 14: Anssumane Fati of Barcelona celebrates after scoring his team's first goal during the Liga match between FC Barcelona and Valencia CF at Camp Nou on September 14, 2019 in Barcelona, Spain. (Photo by Alex Caparros/Getty Images)

With Messi back fit and Suarez out of form, Ernesto Valverde might opt  to field a starkly different starting XI to the one which started against Granada last weekend. 

The availability of the Argentine means that he could partner alongside Antoine Griezzmann and Ansu Fati in the Barcelona attack, with Carles Peres and the fit-again Ousmanne Dembele starting the game from the bench.

Valverde still hasn’t decided his midfield pairing for the season, though Arthur and Sergio Busquets look favorites to play with Frenkie de Jong in the middle of the park.

Junior  Firpo, who played in place of the injured Jordi Alba against Granada a week ago, is expected to make way now that his more-experienced counterpart is back fit.

Despite their poor form of late, an injury to Samuel Umtiti means that both Gerard Pique and Clement Lenglet are expected to continue in central defense, with Marc Andres ter Stegen behind them in the goal.

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Barcelona Head coach Ernesto Valverde of FC Barcelona

Possible lineups and prediction

Mats Hummels bot im Spiel Borussia Dortmund gegen den FC Barcelona (0:0) eine überragende Leistung. Links: Luis Suárez.
DORTMUND, GERMANY - SEPTEMBER 17: Luis Suarez of FC Barcelona apeeals as Mats Hummels of Borussia Dortmund looks on during the UEFA Champions League group F match between Borussia Dortmund and FC Barcelona at Signal Iduna Park on September 17, 2019 in Dortmund, Germany. (Photo by Martin Rose/Bongarts/Getty Images)

Although Villarreal are coming into this game on the back of a good start to the new season, the return of Messi combined with the brilliant home form of Barcelona might force Yellow Submarine to come out of this fixture without any points. 

Furthermore, amid reports that Messi has asked the club’s higher-ups to replace Valverde with Xavi, the pressure will be on the Spanish manager to go all out for the win on Tuesday.

Possible Barcelona lineup: Ter Stegen; Semedo, Piqué, Lenglet, Alba; de Jong, Busquets, Arthur; Messi, Ansu Fati, Griezmann

Possible Villarreal lineup: Asenjo; Peña, Albiol, Torres, Quintilá; Anguissa, Iborra, Cazorla; Chukwueze, Gerard, Ontiveros

Prediction: With Barcelona playing at Camp Nou, they might make it a long night for their guests. I’m going for a 4-1 victory for the home side

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