Depending on the result of Atletico Madrid's match against Real Valladolid this afternoon, FC Barcelona may enter tonight's match in second place, needing a victory against lowly Rayo Vallecano to retain top spot and build up some momentum as they head into Tuesday's UEFA Champions League Round of 16 clash with Manchester City. On paper, it should be an easy ask for the Blaugrana but Rayo have turned a corner in recent weeks, culminating in an impressive 4-1 win over Malaga CF last weekend. Those three points lifted Paco Jemez' side further adrift of the foot of the table -- but Real Betis have a good chance to close the gap this weekend, as they travel to take on slumping Granada tomorrow.
In that sense, Rayo Vallecano will be hoping to pull off a shock tonight, capitalising on a Barcelona team that will probably have one eye on the huge trip to England in midweek. However, Barcelona rarely moved out of second gear in midweek against Real Sociedad and could have still won by a landslide margin; what chance does the league's worst defense have against a Barca strikeforce featuring Lionel Messi, inform Alexis Sanchez and either Cristian Tello or Pedro. To add to the tough task, Neymar could also make his long-awaited return and will be desperate to get in amongst the goals and stake his claim for a starting place against Manchester City.
Predict the score of tonight's La Liga clash between FC Barcelona and Rayo Vallecano by commenting with your prediction below. Best of luck!
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- FC Barcelona News: 14 February 2014; Neymar Declared Fit to Face Rayo Vallecano, Court Rejects Santos Injunction
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