Barcelona predicted lineup vs Real Valladolid: Lionel Messi starts, Frenkie de Jong rested

Pedri of FC Barcelona (Photo by David S. Bustamante/Soccrates/Getty Images)
Pedri of FC Barcelona (Photo by David S. Bustamante/Soccrates/Getty Images) /
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Ronald Araujo of FC Barcelona. (Photo by David S. Bustamante/Soccrates/Getty Images) /


Centre back: Oscar Mingueza

While the youngsters like Ronald Araujo, Sergino Dest and Ilaix Moriba have garnered praises for their performances, Oscar Mingueza silently continues his meteoric rise with little fanfare. He is reliable, solid and makes the back three tick.

The club are relaxed about Mingueza’s contract and are sure the 21-year-old wants to stay with the Catalans. While the board resolves the futures of Lionel Messi and Ousmane Dembele, the renewal of Mingueza is not a priority as the club knows he will stay.

Centre back: Ronald Araujo

Ronald Araujo may finally be ready to start instead of making substitute appearances as he was recovering from an ankle injury. The El Clasico is in six days’ time and regaining match sharpness is the most important aspect for the Uruguayan. The return of Araujo in the central defence also means that Frenkie de Jong won’t feature in the central defence.

The 22-year-old did get enough time to recuperate during the international break and should be ready to start. A sturdy performance against Valladolid will act as a psychological boost ahead of the all-important game against Real Madrid.

Centre back: Clement Lenglet

Clement Lenglet should be the ideal third centre back as Pique remains unavailable and the Frenchman is likely to edge his compatriot Samuel Umtiti. Lenglet has gradually improved after a horrendous first half of the season and is growing in confidence.