Barcelona will seek to get back on track when they face Valencia at home on Sunday night in the 2021-22 La Liga season.
Valencia is currently eighth in the table, level on points with Barcelona ahead of the match at Camp Nou. The Catalan giants are currently ninth in the table, having picked up 12 points from their first seven matches.
Ronald Koeman's final match in charge of Barcelona was supposed to be the 2-0 loss to Atletico Madrid before the international break, but despite the significant speculation around his future, the Dutchman has kept his job and will lead the squad into Sunday's meeting against Valencia.
The Catalan giants have lost their past two games to Benfica and Atletico Madrid, and have only won one of their last four league games, putting them in ninth place.
The Catalans have 12 points from seven games, with three wins, three draws, and one defeat. They are five points behind Real Madrid at the top of the table, despite having a game in hand.
The league scenario is far from hopeless, but Barcelona has a lot of work to do in the Champions League after losing their first two games to Bayern Munich and Benfica, and they have two big games coming up after this one, with Dinamo Kiev in Europe and Real Madrid in La Liga the following weekend.
Valencia, meanwhile, has 12 points after winning three, drawing three, and losing two of their first eight matches, putting them in eighth place in the table. Los Che won three of their first four league games, but have gone winless in their past four, losing to Real Madrid and Sevilla, as well as drawing with Athletic Bilbao and Cadiz.
Valencia will head to Camp Nou seeking to hand Koeman's team their third consecutive defeat, and Los Che have only lost one of their four league away matches this season.
Barcelona may welcome back Ousmane Dembele and Sergio Aguero this weekend, after both players accelerated their injury recovery during the international break.
Martin Braithwaite and Pedri are definitely out, and Ronald Araujo is out due to a hamstring injury he sustained while playing for Uruguay during the international break.
Valencia's Jose Gaya and Carlos Soler have been declared fit after lengthy lay-offs, although Cristiano Piccini remains injured, and Omar Alderete will miss the match due to suspension.
Here is my predicted line-up for the match.
Barcelona (Formation 4-3-3):
Ter Stegen (GK); Dest, Pique, Garcia, Alba; Frenkie de Jong, Busquets, Gavi; Fati, Luuk de Jong, Memphis Depay.
Valencia (Formation 4-4-2):
Cillessen (GK); Correia, Paulista, Diakhaby, Gaya; Soler, Wass, Guillamon, Duro; Guedes, Gomez.
KICKOFF TIME: This match will go down on Sunday at 8PM Nigerian time.
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