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March 30, 2013 5:00 PM GMT
Estadio de Balaídos — Vigo
Referee:‬ Antonio Mateu‎
Attendance:‬ 29000‎
38′ Natxo Insa
Tello 43′
88′ Oubiña
Messi 73′

Celta Vigo-Barcelona Preview: Blaugrana eye fourth straight win as Vilanova returns

The 44-year-old coach has flown back to the Catalan capital after 10 weeks receiving cancer treatment in the US and could watch his team in action at Balaidos on Saturday

By Karthick Arvinth

Cesc Fabregas, Rubén - Barcelona v Rayo Vallecano
Getty Images

Celta Vigo midfielder Michael Krohn-Dehli will miss Saturday's Primera Division clash against Barcelona after injuring his knee while on international duty.

Sergio Alvarez, Hugo Mallo, Samuel Llorca and Alex Lopez are all sidelined, while Andres Tunez and Iago Aspas are suspended.

However, midfielders Quique de Lucas and Natxo Insa have recovered from ankle and thigh problems, respectively, and are available for selection.

Barcelona playmaker Xavi is struggling with a hamstring strain and will not travel to Galicia.

Defender Jordi Alba (hamstring) and striker Pedro (calf) also picked up knocks while on Spain duty and join Carles Puyol (knee), Adriano (thigh) and Victor Valdes (suspension) on the sidelines.

Assistant coach Jordi Roura is likely to rest some of his stars with one eye on Tuesday's Champions League quarter-final first leg against Paris Saint-Germain.

  • Celta Vigo are on a three-match losing run in La Liga.
  • The Galician outfit have won just one of their last 11 matches in all competitions.
  • Celta have lost their last five Liga encounters with Barcelona.
  • Barcelona have won just one of their last five away games across all competitions.
  • Lionel Messi has scored 28 goals in his last 18 Liga outings and is bidding to become the first player in history to score against 19 league opponents in consecutive matches.
  • Jose Manuel Pinto (pictured, right) made 181 league appearances for Celta Vigo between 1998 and 2008.

Field Report
Reader's Predictions
Top 3 Predictions
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Spain - Primera Division ‎(LIGA)‎ Oct 29, 2013 Celta 0 - FC Barcelona 3
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Spain - Primera Division ‎(LIGA)‎ Mar 30, 2013 Celta 2 - FC Barcelona 2
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Spain - Primera Division ‎(LIGA)‎ Nov 3, 2012 FC Barcelona 3 - Celta 1
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Spain - Primera Division ‎(LIGA)‎ Jan 28, 2007 FC Barcelona 3 - Celta 1
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Last Five Matches
Team News
Available Squads
13Javi VarasGoalkeeper
-Roberto LagoDefender
22Gustavo Daniel CabralDefender
11Vadim DemidovDefender
23Danijel PranjicMidfielder
14Fabián OrellanaStriker
24Augusto FernándezMidfielder
-Natxo InsaMidfielder
10Chu-Young ParkStriker
-Jonathan VilaMidfielder
17Lévy Clément MadindaMidfielder
-De LucasStriker
13José Pinto ColoradoGoalkeeper
22Daniel AlvesDefender
4Cesc FàbregasMidfielder
6Thiago AlcántaraMidfielder
17Alex SongMidfielder
9Alexis SánchezStriker
22Éric AbidalDefender
8Andrés Iniesta LujánMidfielder
14Javier MascheranoMidfielder
9David VillaStriker
10Gerard DeulofeuStriker
Players to Watch
Chu-Young Park
Chu-Young Park
Position: Striker
Squad Number: 10
Games Goals YC RC
0 0 0 0
The South Korea international has struggled to establish himself at Celta Vigo since arriving on loan from Arsenal last summer. With leading scorer Iago Aspas starting a four-match ban on Saturday, Park will have to add to his modest Liga tally of three goals if Celta are to save themselves from relegation.
David Villa
David Villa
Position: Striker
Squad Number: 9
Games Goals YC RC
32 13 3 0
The 31-year-old striker has scored two goals in his last two outings for Barcelona and started both of Spain's World Cup qualifiers over the international break. An in-form Villa will be a major asset to Barcelona towards the business end of the season.
Celta are a difficult side to beat at home and they will be desperate to pick up points after losing the Galician derby. Barcelona will look to rest key players ahead of their midweek trip to Paris and they could suffer on the heavy Balaidos pitch.
Editor's Prediction
Celta 1
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