Despite training at the National Stadium in Bukit Jalil, FC Barcelona will play their final match of pre-season at the Shah Alam Stadium tomorrow against the Malaysia XI. The exhibition match has been moved because of the dire state of the pitch at the National Stadium, and while this stadium has a far smaller capacity (69,000 compared to 110,000) it is not believed to be an issue, as the match has only sold 40,000 tickets according to the official Barca website.
That figure is expected to rise by 25% as we approach kick-off tomorrow, and Barcelona will be keen to put on a spectacle for the paying crowd. With a better pitch, Barca will be better equipped to play their usual "tiki-taka" style -- and avoid injury too. Needless to say, any injuries at this late stage of pre-season could be catastrophic for Barcelona's upcoming La Liga title defense.
Barcelona are expected to field a strong line-up despite the relative strength of their opposition, and Gerardo Martino could start Barca's strongest attacking trio -- the aptly named "Nemesis" of Neymar, Lionel Messi and Alexis Sanchez. There is a hope that this particular triumvirate may even rival the Eto'o-Henry-Messi combination that helped Barcelona win a historic treble back in 2008/09 under Pep Guardiola.
Certainly there are similarities there, although for now, Barca fans would surely welcome any sort of support for Lionel Messi, who has often had to "do it all" himself.
Predict the score of tomorrow's match by commenting below. Best of luck!
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- FC Barcelona News: 9 August 2013: Daniel Agger Bid Rejected, Barca "Wasting Time" With David Luiz
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