Barcelona comes back up with a mid-week fixture, Matchday 1 as Lionel Messi and team face relegation-fearing Elche.
Heartbreaks keep piling up for Barcelona as their seven-game winning streak were put on hold by Cadiz in a 1-1 stalemate, last weekend. Barcelona have been faring well with their league matches, having won 13 out of 13 home and away matches, included and that too, in quite a spectacular fashion. But the room for individual mistakes has always haunted Barcelona, in almost all big fixtures. Barcelona are currently placed 4th in the league, and have 8 points less than league leaders Atletico Madrid. They will again be hoping to catch up with them with a win over 18th placed Elche today.
Getting into the game, Ronald Koeman will want to rest some of his important players for the weekend clash against Sevilla, who are currently third in the league.
In all probability, M. Ter Stegen will be in goal, followed by full backs of Oscar Mingueza, and J. Firpo who will be replacing Dest and Alba. The centre-backs will be occupied by Lenglet and Pique, the former of which can’t seem to find any consistency whatsoever.
A midfield of Puig, De Jong and Pjanic could be played to give rest to Pedri and Busquets. Pjanic being the pivot would provide more support, as Puig and Frenkie would fall into more attacking roles.
A front three of Trincao, Messi and Griezmann is preferred, since the 20 year old Trincao has been in sizzling form since he scored the first three goals for his new club. Messi and Griezmann should be enhancing their connection more and more as Leo has always prevailed over with duos.
Elche, on the other hand, has new-found confidence after their stellar 1-0 win over Eibar in their previous game. They have 21 points, similar to their recent victim, Eibar and on a brighter note have 2 games in hand. And they could surely count one in today with their visit to the Camp Nou, home of the Catalan giants.
All in all, this should be a easy win for them over Elche, as they don’t have much to offer except their win against Eibar in their previous fixture with a solitary goal from centre back Dani Calvo. They will be looking to play a perfect game against Barca, aiming for a draw to keep themselves away from relegation.
Barca: (4-3-3) Ter Stegen, Mingueza, Pique, Lenglet, Firpo, De Jong, Pjanic, Puig, Trincao, Griezzman, Messi.
Elche: (4-4-2) Badia, Barragan, Verdu, Calvo, Mojica; Morente, Mfulu, Guti, Rigoni; Boye, Carrillo
It should a comfortable win for Barcelona: 4-0.
Date/Time: Wednesday, February 24, 2021, 7pm CET/WAT (Barcelona & Nigeria), 6pm GMT (UK), 1pm ET, 10pm PT (USA), 11.30pm IST (India)
Venue: Camp Nou, Barcelona, Catalonia, Spain
Referee: Isidro Díaz De Mera Escuderos
VAR: Valentín Pizarro Gómez
How to watch on TV: beIN SPORTS (USA & Canada), LaLigaTV (UK), SuperSport (Nigeria), Movistar LaLiga (Spain), Not Available (India), others
How to stream: FuboTV (USA), Premier Player (UK), Facebook Live (India), Movistar+ (Spain), others