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November 17, 2012 7:00 PM GMT
Camp Nou — Barcelona
Referee:‬ Miguel Ayza‎
Attendance:‬ 73428‎
16′ Lionel Messi
Montañés 24′
28′ Alex Song
60′ Lionel Messi

Barcelona - Zaragoza Preview: Catalan giants target ninth straight win over Blanquillos

Tito Vilanova's charges will be keen to stretch their lead over Atletico Madrid at top of the Primera Division when they host the Aragonese outfit on Saturday evening

By Karthick Arvinth

Carley Puyol, Cesc Fabregas - FC Barcelona, Real Sociedad
Carley Puyol, Cesc Fabregas - FC Barcelona, Real Sociedad


Alves, Pique, Puyol, Alba
Xavi, Song, Iniesta
Pedro, Messi, Villa


Zuculini, Loovens, Alvaro, Paredes
Movilla, Romaric
Rodriguez, Apono, Montanes

Barcelona forward Alexis Sanchez picked up an ankle injury while on international duty with Chile and will miss the clash with Zaragoza at Camp Nou.

But club captain Carles Puyol has made a full recovery from the dislocated elbow he suffered in October and could start alongside Gerard Pique in central defence.

Alex Song (back) and Adriano (hamstring) are both doubtful to feature, while Sergio Busquets is suspended after accumulating five yellow cards.

Zaragoza, meanwhile, will be without defenders Cristian Sapunaru and Abraham through suspension.

Maurizio Lanzaro and Ivan Obradovic are still out injured, but midfielder Jose Mari could return from a knee problem.

  • Barcelona are on a four-match winning run in La Liga and are the only team to remain unbeaten in the league this season.
  • The Catalans are on an 11-match unbeaten run at Camp Nou in all competitions.
  • Lionel Messi (pictured right) needs seven more goals to overtake Cesar Rodriguez (190 goals) as Barcelona's all-time top scorer in La Liga.
  • Zaragoza have won four of their last five matches across all competitions.
  • Los Blanquillos have lost their last eight Liga encounters with Barcelona.
  • Zaragoza's last win over Barca at Camp Nou came in the Copa del Rey quarter-final first leg in February 2007.

Field Report
Reader's Predictions
Top 3 Predictions
Head to Head
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La Liga ‎(LIGA)‎ 17 Nov 2012 Barcelona 3 - Zaragoza 1
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La Liga ‎(LIGA)‎ 7 Apr 2012 Zaragoza 1 - Barcelona 4
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La Liga ‎(LIGA)‎ 19 Nov 2011 Barcelona 4 - Zaragoza 0
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La Liga ‎(LIGA)‎ 5 Mar 2011 Barcelona 1 - Zaragoza 0
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Last Five Matches
Team News
Available Squads
1Víctor ValdésGoalkeeper
5Carles PuyolDefender
18Jordi AlbaDefender
8Andrés Iniesta LujánMidfielder
17Alex SongMidfielder
9David VillaStriker
10Lionel MessiStriker
13José Pinto ColoradoGoalkeeper
22Daniel AlvesDefender
4Cesc FàbregasMidfielder
12Jonathan Dos SantosMidfielder
14Javier MascheranoMidfielder
20Franco ZuculiniMidfielder
22A. PintérMidfielder
9Carlos ArandaStriker
-Víctor RodríguezStriker
25Leo FrancoGoalkeeper
8Edu OriolMidfielder
15Stefan BabovicMidfielder
-Lucas WilchezMidfielder
23Hélder PostigaStriker
Players to Watch
Lionel Messi
Lionel Messi
Position: Striker
Squad Number: 10
Games Goals YC RC
27 26 1 0
The three-time Ballon d'Or winner was not at his best as Argentina limped to a goalless draw against Saudi Arabia on Wednesday. The 25-year-old will look to put his midweek disappointment behind him and concentrate on increasing his goal tally of 76 in all competitions for the calendar year against Zaragoza.
Hélder Postiga
Hélder Postiga
Position: Striker
Squad Number: 23
Games Goals YC RC
0 0 0 0
The Portugal international is in a purple patch of form, having netted five goals in as many games for club and country. Postiga's movement in and around the penalty box could pose problems for Gerard Pique and the returning Carles Puyol.
Having let in nine goals in their last five Liga matches, Barcelona will hope the return of Puyol can stem the flow of goals conceded. Zaragoza have kicked on from last season under Manolo Jimenez, but the history books are not on their side ahead of this Saturday evening clash.
Editor's Prediction
Top Scorers
Player   Goals Penalties
Cristiano Ronaldo Cristiano Ronaldo
Real Madrid
28 6
Diego Costa Diego Costa
Atlético Madrid
27 5
Lionel Messi Lionel Messi
26 6
Karim Benzema Karim Benzema
Real Madrid
17 0
Alexis Sánchez Alexis Sánchez
17 0