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March 17, 2013 8:00 PM GMT
Camp Nou — Barcelona
Referee:‬ José González‎
Attendance:‬ 68197‎
25′ David Villa
Raúl Tamudo 70′
40′ Messi
57′ Messi

Barcelona-Rayo Vallecano Preview: Catalan giants target fifth straight win over Franjirrojos

Buoyed by their stirring fightback against AC Milan in the Champions League, the Blaugrana welcome Paco Jemez's side to Camp Nou hoping to extend their excellent home form

By Karthick Arvinth

Gerard Pique Barcelona 4-0 AC Milan

Barcelona captain Carles Puyol could be sidelined for up to a month after undergoing arthroscopic knee surgery on Friday.

Xavi (hamstring) and Victor Valdes (suspension) also sit out Sunday's clash, but youngster Marc Bartra is available after overcoming a knee problem.

Midfielder Cesc Fabregas and winger Alexis Sanchez may return to the line-up after starting on the bench against AC Milan in midweek.

Rayo boss Paco Jemez will be without suspended trio Jose Manuel Casado, Javi Fuego and Leo Baptistao.

Mikel Labaka has returned to training following an ankle injury but is not match fit, while fellow defender Jordi Amat is available after serving a one-match ban.

  • Barcelona are on a nine-match winning run at Camp Nou in La Liga.
  • The Catalan giants will face Paris Saint-Germain in the Champions League quarter-finals, with the first leg to be played at Parc des Princes on April 2.
  • Lionel Messi (pictured, right) has scored 13 goals in his last 11 appearances for Barcelona.
  • Rayo Vallecano are on a four-match winless run away from home in La Liga, losing three.
  • Los Franjirrojos have lost their last four meetings with Barcelona by an aggregate score of 19-0.
  • Rayo's last win over Barca at Camp Nou was a 2-0 success in May 2000.

Field Report
Reader's Predictions
Top 3 Predictions
Head to Head
Spain - Primera Division ‎(LIGA)‎ Feb 15, 2014 FC Barcelona 6 - Rayo Vallecano 0
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Spain - Primera Division ‎(LIGA)‎ Sep 21, 2013 Rayo Vallecano 0 - FC Barcelona 4
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Spain - Primera Division ‎(LIGA)‎ Mar 17, 2013 FC Barcelona 3 - Rayo Vallecano 1
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Spain - Primera Division ‎(LIGA)‎ Oct 27, 2012 Rayo Vallecano 0 - FC Barcelona 5
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Spain - Primera Division ‎(LIGA)‎ Apr 29, 2012 Rayo Vallecano 0 - FC Barcelona 7
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Last Five Matches
Team News
Available Squads
13José Pinto ColoradoGoalkeeper
18Jordi AlbaDefender
4Cesc FàbregasMidfielder
8Andrés Iniesta LujánMidfielder
14Javier MascheranoMidfielder
9David VillaStriker
9Alexis SánchezStriker
22Daniel AlvesDefender
6Thiago AlcántaraMidfielder
17Alex SongMidfielder
4Alejandro GálvezDefender
25Jordi FiguerasDefender
23Adrián GonzálezMidfielder
-José CarlosMidfielder
25Alejandro DomínguezStriker
23Andrija DelibasicStriker
2Jordi AmatDefender
-Nacho MartínezDefender
20Franco VázquezMidfielder
20Raúl TamudoStriker
Players to Watch
Position: Striker
Squad Number: 10
Games Goals YC RC
27 26 1 0
The Argentina captain was at his brilliant best as his two first-half goals inspired Barcelona to a 4-0 rout of AC Milan in the Champions League round of 16. Messi will look to add to his 53 goals this season and help increase Barca's 13-point advantage at the top of the Liga table.
Andrija Delibasic
Andrija Delibasic
Position: Striker
Squad Number: 23
Games Goals YC RC
0 0 0 0
The Montengro forward is likely to lead Rayo Vallecano's attack at Camp Nou in the absence of the suspended Leo Baptistao. The visitors will look to make the most of Delibasic's ability in the air as they go in search of a first win at Camp Nou in over a decade.
Barcelona dispelled doubts about their form in spectacular fashion against Milan in midweek and they will now look to put together a run of wins and wrap up the Liga title as soon as possible. Rayo are not great away from home and they are also missing some key players.
Editor's Prediction
Top Scorers
Player   Goals Penalties
C. Ronaldo C. Ronaldo
Real Madrid
28 6
Diego Costa Diego Costa
Atl. Madrid
27 5
Messi Messi
26 6
Karim Benzema Karim Benzema
Real Madrid
17 0
Alexis Sánchez Alexis Sánchez
17 0