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Barcelona team news ahead of Real Sociedad encounter

Saturday 15th April 2017
Luis Enrique's side are anxious to regain form when they face Real Sociedad at the Camp Nou. Here is our Barcelona team news for their upcoming La Liga game.

The Catalans had a humiliating experience when they lost 2-0 to Malaga last weekend in the Spanish top division before they were once again trumped on the UEFA Champions League stage, this time suffering a 3-0 defeat to Juventus on Tuesday night. Manager Luis Enrique will be hoping to stop the decline with victory in the game against La Real, which would put league leaders, Real Madrid under more pressure ahead of next week's El Clasico.

This will be the fourth time Barca and Real Sociedad have faced each other this season. The first was in the league and Barcelona were defeated 1-0. The second and third time was the Copa del Rey quarter-final two-legged tie, both games ended in favor of the Blaugrana with 1-0 and 5-2 wins.

Team News

Barcelona have been delivered a huge blow. They will be without their star attacker Neymar, who is suspended for three games. Defender Javier Mascherano picked up an injury on Tuesday against Juventus making him unfit to play against Real Sociedad. Rafinha Alcantara also remains sidelined with a meniscus injury while Aleix Vidal is out for the rest of the season. Still, Enrique got a boost on Wednesday when Arda Turan resumed training having been unavailable since the international break.

Barcelona predicted line-up against Real Sociedad

Marc-Andre Ter Stegen (GK)

The German shot-stopper will be looking to impress his boss on Saturday after his mediocre display against Juventus in the Champions League.

Gerard Pique (CB)

The Spanish international is one of Barcelona's finest performers this season but his controversial nature has made him inconsistent. He has been in and out of the team in past weeks but will start against Sociedad.

Samuel Umtiti (CB)

His performance against Juventus was the only positive in the game for his side. Umtiti's growth has come at a very fast pace. He is a definite starter this weekend.

Jeremy Mathieu (CB)

The Frenchman seems like he is sitting on his hands at the back lately but due to the club's limited options, he will be playing in the third centre-half role.

Sergi Roberto (RM)

The versatile player has been deployed to different areas of the pitch this season and he will play on the right-hand side of the field at Camp Nou on Saturday.

Sergio Busquets (DM)

The Spaniard was suspended and could not participate in the game against Juventus but he will be returning to the starting XI on Saturday as the defensive midfielder.

Ivan Rakitic (CM)

The Croatian delivered a poor performance in midweek. He will be aiming to return to his old ways by taking control of midfield.

Denis Suarez (CM)

The summer signing will be replacing veteran midfielder Andres Iniesta in the starting XI. The 23-year old has been unproductive this season, picking up just three goals and three assists. He will be looking to improve his game.

Jordi Alba (LM)

The Spanish left-back has been given little playing time under Enrique in recent weeks, but he is likely to return to the starting XI to face Sociedad, on the left-hand side of midfield.

Lionel Messi (CF)

The absence of Neymar will put most of the attacking duties on Messi's shoulder. He will be playing in the centre just behind the main striker.

Luis Suarez (ST)

Suarez will be taking on the role of leading the line. After his damning performances against both Juventus and Malaga, the Uruguayan will be anxious to get back to winning ways.

Barcelona's predicted starting line-up
Adebayo Temitope

Temitope, an ardent soccer fan. I may be based in Lagos but I watch as much European football as I can. I've been writing about football for several years, before I joined IRIAW you may have seen my work on The Football Weeks. I'm also a keen music fan

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