TEAM NEWS: David Villa starts, while Lionel Messi is on the bench, as Barcelona host Cordoba

The reigning champions have chosen to rest players for their clash against lower league opponents tonight, but still have plenty of attacking firepower at their disposal
David Villa starts for Barcelona in attack alongside Cesc Fabregas and Alexis Sanchez this evening, as they play the second leg of their Copa del Rey tie against Segunda Division side Cordoba.

The Catalan side won the first leg in Cordoba 2-0 thanks to a double from Lionel Messi, but the recently-crowned Ballon d'Or winner is only on the bench tonight.

The Argentine is one of a number of players rested, with the likes of Gerard Pique, Xavi, Andres Iniesta and Pedro not even included in Barcelona's matchday squad having been given time off this week.

In defence Javier Mascherano replaces Pique to play alongside Carlos Puyol at centre-back, while Dani Alves and Martin Montoya occupy the full-back positions.

Elsewhere, Alex Song makes a rare start in midfield, as he completes a midfield three that also includes Sergi Roberto and Thiago.

Barcelona's coach, Tito Vilanova, will not be present for the match as he travels to New York to see a specialist as he continues to recover from his recent tumour relapse.

Cordoba make a number of changes from their starting XI that drew 0-0 with Mirandes on Sunday, the most notable of which being the return of Fede Vico in attack. The 18-year-old forward impressed in the first leg back in December, and starts up front with Joselu.

Barcelona (4-3-3):
Pinto; Alves, Puyol, Mascherano, Montoya; Sergi Roberto, Song, Thiago; Cesc, Villa, Alexis

Subs: Valdes, Alba, Busquets, Bartra, Dos Santos, Tello, Messi

Cordoba (4-4-2): Saizar; Fernandez, Armando, Aguilar, Fuentes; Silva, Garai, Caballero, Dubarbier; Joselu, Vico

Subs: Garcia, Abel, Patino, Pedro, Kiko, Rennella, Cristian