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Barcelona vs Sporting Gijón, 2016 La Liga: Predicted Lineups

David Ramos/Getty Images

After a sensational victory against Deportivo La Coruña in midweek, Barcelona hope to build on the momentum and start another winning streak to secure the La Liga trophy this Saturday against Sporting Gijón at Camp Nou. The confidence and faith are back. Now the team just needs to keep playing well and winning.

Luis Enrique has a bigger squad to choose from on the weekend, but his starting lineup might not be at all surprising:


Alves - Piqué - Mascherano - Alba

Rakitic - Busquets - Iniesta

Messi - Suárez - Neymar

Starting the Gala XI in the last few games was a desperate move to try and find a win. But after two very good collective performances, having the best eleven players on the squad starting again is the smart move. Sergio Busquets, Andrés Iniesta and Jordi Alba were substituted early at Riazor to get extra rest, and there is no reason to think they won't play from the beginning against Sporting.

Lionel Messi is still not 100% confirmed to play because of an ankle problem, but since he's absolutely crazy and will never stop unless he's forced to, the best player in the world will certainly feature. Luis Suárez has zero chance of going to the bench after his historic performance against Depor, and Neymar, who is trying to quiet his critics, will start too.

On defense, Gerard Piqué returns from suspension and will play alongside Javier Mascherano, although I wish Marc Bartra was rewarded for his amazing game in midweek with a second straight start. But that is not happening, so the usual pairing will be together again.

Always keep an eye for Sergi Roberto, Rafinha Alcântara and Arda Turan on the starting lineup because of their versatility and Lucho's rotation system, but there is no reason to think Enrique will touch the Gala XI after the Riazor performance.

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