Competition- La Liga 2019/20
Date and Time- 19th July 2020, 5 pm CET.
Venue- Mendizorrotza Stadium
After a disappointing loss against Osasuna with rivals Real Madrid eventually clinching the trophy, Barcelona is back for their final match of the La Liga campaign against Deportivo Alavés.
It has been a rough La Liga season for Barcelona as their form was shaky throughout the campaign which eventually meant that the Blaugrana lost their lead in the vital games and the trophy went to Real Madrid.
Last 5 Barça matches: DWWWL
- Barça-Atlético: 2-2
- Villarreal-Barça: 1-4
- Barça-Espanyol: 1-0
- R.Valladolid-Barça: 0-1
- Barça-Osasuna: 1-2
Last 5 Deportivo Alavés matches: LLLDW
- D.Alavés-Granada: 0-2
- R.Valladolid-D.Alavés: 1-0
- R.Madrid-D.Alavés: 2-0
- D.Alavés-Getafe: 0-0
- R.Betis-D.Alavés: 1-2
- Barça has won each of their last 7 matches against Deportivo Alaves in all competitions.
- Barça has kept a clean sheet in each of their last 7 away matches against Alaves in all competitions.
- Deportivo Alaves have failed to score a single goal in their last 3 La Liga games at the Mendizorrotza Stadium.
- Barcelona has not been beaten in any of their last 5 La Liga matches on the road (W3 D2).
- Alaves have managed to win just 1 of their last 8 league games, although that only win came in their last match (D1 L6)
Barcelona has assembled a 16 men squad to face Alaves. Pique, Firpo, Rakitic are suspended for the match. Arthur is out due to ankle injury. Once again, Barcelona has lacked depth in selection for the squad. With long term injuries and suspensions, it will be interesting to see who Setien chooses in his starting eleven. With nothing to lose, there is an optimism that Setien will choose youngsters like Puig, Ansu, Araujo in the eleven and veterans like Messi, Pique who have started in every game can be benched.
Since Braithwaite was very poor against Osasuna, there is an indication that Suarez will start in his position. If Setien doesn’t want Suarez than Vidal can play in that position. In the pre-lockdown matches, Vidal has often started as a number 9 or wide winger. Now if Setien wants to overload the right side then Vidal will be playing on the right. In the midfield, FDJ, Busquets, Puig should be no brainer since Puig can actually have the freedom to operate very high on the pitch with Busquets and FDJ covering at the back. In fact, if Busquets and FDJ can play as wide midfielders then the fullbacks can stay high as well to provide width. In the defence, Araujo should start ahead of Pique since the Spaniard is playing every match and definitely needs some rest to avoid injury. Since this match isnt important, Neto will be given the nod to start ahead of Ter Stegen.
This match is like a formality for Barcelona and the main focus will be to train for the upcoming round of 16-second leg against the Italian giants Napoli. Barcelona drew 1-1 against Napoli at San Paulo and will be looking to win in the second leg which will be held at Camp Nou. If the Blaugrana qualifies, they will be flying to Portugal for the later stages of the UCL campaign which will be a one-legged match.