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Primera División

  • October 19, 2013
  • • 2:00 PM
  • • Estadio El Sadar, Pamplona (Iruñea)
  • Referee: Pedro Jesús Pérez Montero
  • • Attendance: 16123

La Liga Preview: Osasuna - Barcelona

La Liga Preview: Osasuna - Barcelona


Gerardo Martino's side has taken maximum points from every Liga game and will fancy its chances to make it nine straight in Pamplona against a side already in the relegation zone.

Barcelona welcomes back Lionel Messi for Saturday's trip to Osasuna after the striker returned to training on Monday following a thigh injury.

The Argentine missed the club's last two matches, against Celtic in the Champions League and Real Valladolid in La Liga, after aggravating his injury in the 2-0 win over Almeria.

The 26-year-old Messi was also absent for Argentina's final two World Cup qualifying matches, but he should be fit to face a side that he scored six goals against last season.

Osasuna did not have a good time against Barca last term, but will take heart from its 3-2 victory over the Catalans at home in February 2012, while it also comes into the game on the back of a 1-0 win over Malaga in the last domestic fixture before the international break.

However, Gerardo Martino's side have enjoyed a perfect start to the campaign with eight wins out of eight, and is also boosted by the return of Javier Mascherano, who has also been struggling with a thigh problem.

Osasuna coach Javi Garcia will be without Alvaro Cejudo through suspension, while he also has injury concerns over Raoul Loe (thigh), Roberto Torres (head), Echaide (knee), Miguel Flano (collarbone), and Nino (knee).

Goalkeeper Andres Fernandez is expected to play, and he believes the hosts can cause an upset on Saturday.

"They are Barca, we know it will be very difficult, that nothing will be easy and that they can hurt us in just two passes," Fernandez said. "We will have to work hard, but at home we can hurt them.

"Here, we are capable of taking points against any opponent and we are working towards that. The coach is putting across the idea that we can win this week. We are making efforts to unsettle them and it is better left unsaid so they do not take note."

As well as the return of Argentine duo Messi and Mascherano, Barca has also welcomed back Carles Puyol following his knee issues, although Saturday's match may come too soon for the club captain.

Jordi Alba (thigh), Ibrahim Afellay and Isaac Cuenca (both knee) are likely to be out for the league leaders as they look to extend their winning start.


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Head to Head
La Liga ‎(LIGA)‎ Mar 16, 2014 Barcelona 7 - Osasuna 0
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La Liga ‎(LIGA)‎ Oct 19, 2013 Osasuna 0 - Barcelona 0
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La Liga ‎(LIGA)‎ Jan 27, 2013 Barcelona 5 - Osasuna 1
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La Liga ‎(LIGA)‎ Aug 26, 2012 Osasuna 1 - Barcelona 2
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La Liga ‎(LIGA)‎ Feb 11, 2012 Osasuna 3 - Barcelona 2
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Last Five Matches
Team News
Available Squads
13Andrés FernándezGoalkeeper
2Marc BertránDefender
5Manuel Ortiz ToribioMidfielder
22Jordan LotièsDefender
8De las CuevasMidfielder
20F. SilvaMidfielder
21Roberto TorresMidfielder
19Oriol RieraStriker
1Asier RiesgoGoalkeeper
3Joan OriolDefender
4Miguel FlañoDefender
10Patxi PuñalMidfielder
-Ariel NúñezMidfielder
18Manuel OnwuStriker
12Víctor ValdésGoalkeeper
5Carles PuyolDefender
4Cesc FàbregasMidfielder
8Andrés Iniesta LujánMidfielder
13José Pinto ColoradoGoalkeeper
32Jonathan Dos SantosMidfielder
14Javier MascheranoMidfielder
17Alex SongMidfielder
24Sergi RobertoMidfielder
10Lionel MessiStriker

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