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Cultural Leonesa vs Barcelona: TV channel, live stream, team news & preview

10:00 GMT 31/10/2018
Ousmane Dembele Barcelona 2018-19
Coming off the back of a Clasico victory, Ernesto Valverde is set to make changes to his Barca side for the Copa del Rey encounter

Barcelona made history last April when they became the first club to reach the landmark figure of 30 Copa del Rey titles with a stunning 5-0 win over Sevilla at the Wanda Metropolitano in Madrid.

No club gets close to Barca in terms of history in the competition, with Athletic Club’s 23 wins next on the roll of honour before Real Madrid come in third with 19.

On Wednesday, Ernesto Valderve’s side will begin their quest to again show their dominance in the knockout tournament as they travel to face third-tier outfit Cultural Leonesa in the last 32, which is played over two legs.

Relegated from the Segunda Division last season, they have little of the history that their opponents boast, having reached the last 16 three times, though most recently in 1959-60.

Game Cultural Leonesa v Barcelona
Date Wednesday, October 31
Time 8:30pm GMT / 4:30pm ET

TV Channel, Live Stream & How To Watch

In the USA, this match will be available to watch on beIN Sports 1 and to stream on beIN Sports Connect.

US TV channel Online stream
beIN Sports 1 beIN Sports Connect

In the United Kingdom (UK), the game will not be broadcast live.

UK TV channel Online stream
n/a n/a

Squads & Team News

Position Cultural Leonesa players
Goalkeepers Palatsi, Diarra
Defenders Ulbizua, Garrido, Escalante, Alsonso, Viti, Saul, Bernal
Midfielders Y. Gonzalez, Marcos, Martinez, Romero, Sene, Capilla, Mancebo
Forwards Rodriguez, Liberto, Delgado, Zelu, Ortiz, Aridane

Despite winning 3-1 against Inter de Madrid at the weekend, changes are forecast in the Cultural Leonesa side.

They are notably without their captain, Antonio Martinez, who is banned.

Possible Leonesa XI: Diarra; Saul, S. Gonzalez, Romero, Viti; Bernal, Marcos; Rodriguez, Delgado, Liberto; Ortiz

Position Barcelona squad
Goalkeepers Cillessen, Inaki Pena
Defenders Semedo, Lenglet, Sergi Roberto, Cuenca, Chumi, Miranda
Midfielders Denis, Arthur, Rafinha, Vidal, Riqui Puig, Samper, Alena
Forwards Dembele, Malcom, Munir

Barcelona will be without long-term defensive injury absentees Thomas Vermaelen and Samuel Umtiti while Lionel Messi will also be on the sidelines once again due to a broken arm. Gerard Pique is rested, meaning the club will rely on youth in central defense.

Valverde has called up seven players from the ‘B’ ranks for this clash, Inaki Pena, Alena, Miranda, Riqui Puig, Cuenca and Chumi, but competition rules mean that there must be at least seven players from the first team on the field at all times. 

Jasper Cillessen has been ill, but the goalkeeper starts as part of that seven.

Possible Barcelona XI: Cillessen Semedo, Chumi, Cuenca Miranda, Vidal, Samper, Denis,Malcom, Munir, Dembele.

Betting & Match Odds

Barcelona are huge 1/10 favourites to win the game according to bet365 . Cultural can be backed at 20/1, while the draw is priced at 17/2.

Click here to see more offers for the game, including goalscoring markets, correct score predictions and more.

Match Preview

Fresh from a 5-0 Clasico victory over Real Madrid on Sunday, which accounted for Blancos boss Julen Lopetegui, Barcelona are in high spirits as they make the trip to Leon for their opening Copa del Rey match of the season.

Even the absence of Messi did not stop Valverde’s side from flexing their offensive muscles at Camp Nou at the weekend, but against more modest opposition they have elected to give some star names the night off, among them hat-trick hero Luis Suarez.

The coach has, however, warned of the dangers of complacency ahead of this fixture and has underlined the value he has placed on the competition.

“The cup is a very important competition. I don’t understand the idea of not going for one tournament to focus on another,” he said.

“We need to avoid surprises and play a good game because our opponents will be playing at 200%,

“We are expecting a rival who will try to play well, taking the ball from behind. They can count on the enthusiasm of the crowd, and it’s a difficult game for us in that sense.

“The opponent has a lot to gain, it’s a massive game for them.”

Cultural’s last experience at this round of the Copa del Rey, however, was not a happy one. In 2016-17, they faced Real Madrid and were thumped 7-1 in the first left before going down 13-2 on aggregate after a 6-1 loss at the Bernabeu in the second.

If they could keep things competitive for the return match on December 5, that would be seen as a victory in itself.