Barcelona’s strongest lineup against Atletico Madrid

president Joan Laporta of FC Barcelona. (Photo by David S. Bustamante/Soccrates/Getty Images)
president Joan Laporta of FC Barcelona. (Photo by David S. Bustamante/Soccrates/Getty Images) /

After being thrashed by Benfica in the Champions League, Barcelona are back in  La Liga for their away assignment against Atletico Madrid. A trip to Wanda Metropolitano will not be easy on Ronald Koeman’s side given the fact that the hosts have been in solid form in the league campaign.

Nevertheless, the Catalans will still look to keep their heads high and hence will look to churn out a positive result on Saturday. Also, Ronald Koeman will be looking to field his best side against the Rojiblancos. Recently, there has been a lot of buzz regarding the future of the Dutchman, with many suggesting that the Barca boss might be shown the exit door before the international break this month.

Barcelona Team Updates

Pedri has been ruled out with a left thigh injury and hence is certain to miss the game against the Rojiblancos. But at the same time,left-back Jordi Alba has been declared fit for the game and hence was named in the 22-man squad announced on Friday.

This could be Barcelona’s starting XI against Diego Simeone’s side

Ronald Koeman‘s starting eleven should see Marc Andre Ter Stegen donning the gloves between the sticks. The German will be guarded by his two central defenders -Gerard Pique and Ronald Araujo. Both center-backs will have to keep things tight at the back and hence will be a vital part of this Barca defense.

Sergino Dest will return to his usual right-back position. Jordi Alba will be featuring in the left-back role and will have to contribute heavily in the final third.

The Blaugrana midfield will consist of Sergio Busquets as the defensive midfielder. The Spaniard will be accompanied by two central midfielders-Frenkie De Jong and Sergi Roberto. Youngster Gavi, who received a call up to the Spain national side for the Nations League finals, has a chance of starting against Atletico and can replace Roberto on Saturday.

Barcelona’s attacking third will consist of Phillipe Coutinho as the left-winger whereas Memphis Depay will occupy the no.9 role upfront. After a poor performance against Benfica, Luuk De Jong might have to make way for Yusuf Demir. The Austrian teenager has fared well in his loan stint and has often provided good support in the final third and therefore will likely be rewarded with a starting spot on the right wing.

Next. Barcelona to keep Koeman until the international break. dark

Expected Starting XI (4-3-3):

Goalkeeper:  Marc-Andre ter Stegen

Right-back: Sergino Dest
Centre-back (R): Gerard Pique
Centre-back (L): Ronald Araujo
Left-back: Jordi Alba

Central midfielder (R): Sergi Roberto
Defensive midfielder: Sergio Busquets
Central midfielder (L): Frenkie de Jong

Right-winger: Yusuf Demir
Center-forward: Memphis Depay
Left-winger: Phillipe Coutinho