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Primera División

  • October 22, 2011
  • • 21:00
  • • Camp Nou, Barcelona
  • Referee: Eduardo Iturralde Gonzalez
  • • Attendance: 82743
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La Liga Preview: Barcelona v Sevilla

La Liga Preview: Barcelona v Sevilla

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The Catalan giants have broken their own record in terms of unbeaten games at the start of a season, and they face a side who have also yet to taste defeat domestically


PROBABLE LINEUPS

BARCELONA


Valdes

Alves, Puyol, Mascherano, Abidal
Xavi, Busquets, Iniesta
Pedro, Messi, Villa

SEVILLA


Varas
Caceres, Spahic, Escude, Navarro
Trochowski, Medel
Navas, Manu, Perotti
Kanoute

Cesc Fabregas is slowly making his way back to fitness following a hamstring injury, but his efforts to return to the fold are likely to be rewarded with just a place on the bench for the visit of Sevilla.

Alexis Sanchez remains sidelined with a longer-term hamstring problem, as the curse of that particular physical ailment continues to be a concern for coach Pep Guardiola. Gerard Pique picked up a similar injury in last weekend's 3-0 defeat of Racing, and will be on the sidelines for another week.

Sevilla's main fitness concern is that of striker Alvaro Negredo, who has been ruled out of the contest as a result of a hamstring strain that has kept him out of action for most of the month of October.

Coach Marcelino will look to defend a seven-game unbeaten run in La Liga so far this season, and will likely employ Frederic Kanoute in a lone striking role.


DID YOU KNOW?
  • Barcelona have scored 21 goals in four league matches at home so far this season, defeating Villarreal, Osasuna, Atletico Madrid and Racing in the process.
  • They have remained unbeaten in their first 13 games of the season, a club record.
  • Including last season's Super Cup clash at Camp Nou, Barca have defeated Sevilla in their last encounters in Catalunya with a score of 13-0.
  • Sevilla have made their best-ever start to a Primera Division campaign, winning four and drawing three matches in their seven-game unbeaten run.
  • The Andalucian side last recorded victory at Camp Nou in January 2010 in the Copa del Rey, when a 2-1 victory helped eliminate the holders.
  • Alvaro Negredo, who will miss the contest through injury, is the club's current leading scorer this season with three goals.

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Last Five Matches
Odds
Team News
Available Squads
1Víctor ValdésGoalkeeper
21AdrianoDefender
14Javier MascheranoMidfielder
22Éric AbidalDefender
22Daniel AlvesDefender
-Seydou KeitaMidfielder
6Thiago AlcántaraMidfielder
6XaviMidfielder
7David VillaStriker
10MessiStriker
8Andrés Iniesta LujánMidfielder
13José Pinto ColoradoGoalkeeper
3Andreu Fontàs PratDefender
17MaxwellDefender
4Cesc FàbregasMidfielder
16BusquetsMidfielder
7PedroStriker
23CuencaStriker
13Javi VarasGoalkeeper
3Fernando NavarroDefender
14Julien EscudéDefender
2Federico Julián FazioDefender
4Martín CáceresDefender
8Gary MedelMidfielder
6CampañaDefender
9ArmenterosMidfielder
15Piotr TrochowskiMidfielder
15Jesús Navas GonzálezMidfielder
20Manu Del MoralStriker
1Andrés PalopGoalkeeper
14LunaDefender
23CokeDefender
5AlexisDefender
10Ivan RakiticMidfielder
12Fred KanoutéStriker
42Luis AlbertoStriker
Players to Watch
Andrés Iniesta Luján
Andrés Iniesta Luján
Position: Midfielder
Squad Number: 8
Games Goals YC RC
35 3 0 0
The World Cup winner was in excellent form last week against Racing on his return from injury, and scored a marvellous goal in midweek against Viktoria Plzen. He seems to have heeded his coaches' message that the midfielders should score more often, and his runs forward must be monitored by the Sevilla back line.
Manu Del Moral
Manu Del Moral
Position: Striker
Squad Number: 20
Games Goals YC RC
0 0 0 0
The attacking midfielder scored a goal of the season contender in last week's 2-1 win over Sporting, lashing the ball into the net from the edge of the area, and he has been a welcome addition to the Rojiblancos' team following his summer arrival. His link up with Frederic Kanoute will be vital to take the pressure from his defence.
Prediction
Given Barcelona's propensity for hammering Primera Division opposition at home this season, with a goal difference of 21-0, it's difficult to envision Sevilla offering a great deal of resistance, as the champions march to another victory.
Editor's Prediction

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