Barca faces one of their toughest rivals Athletico Madrid on Saturday by 8:45 pm who has almost enjoyed unbeaten run.ALSO READ: NEYMAR HAILS UNAI EMERY


Barca who are currently sitting top the La Liga table with 24 points from 12 matches has won 7, drawn 3 and lost 2 and has also qualified for the champions league knock-out stage.

On the other hand, Athletico Madrid who sits 3rd below Sevilla who is beating them with 2-goals aggregate even as both teams are have 23 points each.

Ordinarily, Barca is expected to start the game with their normal 4-3-3 formation whereas Athletico Madrid is expected to cling on to their usual 4-4-2 formation.

Barca Expected Starting XI (4-3-3)

Goalkeeper: Marc-Andre ter Stegen

Defense: Nelson Semedo, Gerard Pique, Samuel Umtiti, Jordi Alba

Midfield: Arturo Vidal, Sergio Busquets, Arthur Melo

Attack: Lionel Messi, Luis Suarez, Philippe Coutinho

Athletico Expected Starting XI (4-4-2)

Goalkeeper: J. Oblak

Defense: Juafran, J. Gimenez, L. Hernandez, F. Luis

Midfield: A. Correa, Thomas, R. Hernandez, Saul

Attack: N. Kalinic, A. Griezmann

Barca is topping the goal-scoring chat with 34 goals in 12 matches, though they had also conceded a worrisome number of goals 18 goals in 12 matches.

Athletico Madrid on the other hand had16 goals for and 8 goals against in 12 matches.

This keeps the statistics at 2.83 goals for as against 1.5 goals conceded per match for Barca.

Meanwhile, Athletico Madrid has 1.33 goals for as against 0.66 goals conceded in 12 matches.

The highlight of the match shall be the return of Philippe Coutinho who has returned to training after weeks out.

His return to this match shall be a welcome boost as his creativity will be key in helping them break down Athletico’s stubborn defense.

Nevertheless, Griezmann is expected to show his class as he faces Barca which he earlier rejected their offer to join them.