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Barcelona vs Levante, La Liga: Projected Lineups; Rotations, everyone?

David Ramos/Getty Images

Barcelona is back to Camp Nou after three weeks for a La Liga match against Levante on Sunday, and Luis Enrique will probably look to make changes to his squad again. A few of them are forced: of the players used against Roma on Wednesday, Gerard Piqué (suspended) and Rafinha Alcântara (injured) won't play. Claudio Bravo and Thomas Vermaelen are sure to miss the game with calf problems, while Dani Alves and Douglas Pereira are still doubtful for Sunday.

Since there are five games in the next 14 days and the injured players slowly come back, get ready to see some rotations again. It's crazy to think Lucho will ever try any rotations with such a thin squad, but we all know how much he trusts his convictions, which leads me to think he will continue to do it. The next league games are theoretically easy, so there's a big chance he gives more minutes to early season reserves.

So taking all of that into account, this might be Barça's lineup for Sunday:


Alves - Bartra - Mathieu - Adriano

Rakitic - Mascherano - Roberto

Messi - Suárez - Neymar

It looks a lot different than usual, but here's a few considerations: Jordi Alba has played too many games, and Adriano is fully fit, which might warrant a left-back change; if Alves is cleared, then he's going to play, it's that simple; Busquets and Iniesta have played a lot of straight minutes like Alba, which moves Roberto to the midfield, Mascherano to Busi's spot and opens up a slot for Marc Bartra on defense; 'MSN' is never touched, and they know how to manage their minutes on their own, so no changes there.

We asked our community to pick their starting lineup, and this was the most voted group:

Ter Stegen; Sergi Roberto, Mascherano, Mathieu, Alba; Busquets, Rakitic, Iniesta; Messi, Suárez, Neymar

That's a much more logical and safe choice, which is why you're smarter than I am. But we never know what goes through Enrique's mind, so let's wait.

Meanwhile, let's have a quick look at Levante's probable lineup:


Juanfran - Trujillo - Feddal

López - Mari - Verza - Camaraza - Toño

Deyverson - Ghilas

Other than the Algerian Benzema, Nabil Ghilas, the rest of the Valéncia side's starting group will come to Camp Nou to defend. That three-man back-line will likely become a 5-man defense without the ball, which will happen for about 75% of the game. Even with all that protection on defense, Levante has lost 10 straight at Camp Nou, and they have conceded at least four goals in each of their last four games, which means Barça will probably take this one even with heavy rotations.

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