Barca will resume league duties today after the international break. All players have returned to the team, including Griezmann, Messi and Coutinho who all represented their countries in the international games.
The game against Getafe will be the first in a line up that will see Barca also playing in the Champions League next week. So, it’s expected that the coach will rest some key players.
Ter Stegen, Umtiti and Jordi Alba were not included in the squad due to injuries. Ter Stegen is still recovering from a surgery. This means that every first team player is fit at the moment except those mentioned above.
Junior Firpo have recovered from his injury and was named in the squad. This is the full squad list of players called up for the match.
Neto, Arnau Tenas, Inaki Pena
Dest, Piqué, Araujo, Lenglet, Junior Firpo, Mingueza.
Busquets, Alena, Riqui Puig, Pjanic,
S.Roberto, Coutinho, De Jong,
Griezmann, Braithwaite, Messi, Dembélé, Pedri, Trincao, Ansu Fati.
Ronald Koeman is expected to continue with his favoured 4-2-3-1 formation. With this in mind, we expect that he is going to rest some key players for the crucial Champions League match next week.
Almost each of the coach’ first team regulars participated in the international matches. This means tired legs. Facing a team like Getafe at this moment may mean that the coach has to go with players with speed. This is why i earlier stated that the coach may opt to start Dembele and Trincao instead with Griezmann in-between them.
Griezmann’s other major key attribute is the fact that he can track back, offer more defensive support and can drive forward with pace, opening up play for others. If the coach should start him in place of Coutinho for the game, then he will likely be used in the central role.
Getafe’s intense paced footballing also means that Pique and Lenglet may get the nod ahead of Araujo in defense. Yet, i think Araujo should be allowed to start ahead of Pique in this one, while Pique is rested for the Champions League game. There is also the surprise inclusion of Barca B player, Minguenza, a centre back.
With Junior Firpo back in the squad, starting Dest at Left Back may no longer be feasible, but the decision still rests with the coach.
Though a traditionally difficult opponent, Barca have always found a way to win Getafe. For some reason too, it’s usually players from Barca Academy that carried the day. So, if Ansu Fati should start ahead of Dembele, he may be just another Barca youth product that will end up again tormenting the Madrid based La Liga side.
On the opposite side though, Barca Academy graduate, Cuccurella will be lining up for Getafe against his parent club. Many have also touted him to be the future replacement for Jordi Alba. So, he may also decide to prove a point. He is a Barca graduate.Expect a game filled with fireworks, and lots of beautiful counter-attacking football.
• PREDICTED LINE UP
Sergi Roberto, Ronald Araujo, Clément Lenglet, Dest.
De Jong, Carles Alena/Pjanic
Dembele, Griezmann, Trincao and Braithwaite.
•8PM Nigerian Time.