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Atletico Madrid v Barcelona: Three things to look forward to this weekend

La Liga is back with a bang!

FC Barcelona v Juventus - UEFA Champions League Photo by David Ramos/Getty Images

La Liga returns this weekend, after the latest international break, with Barcelona facing their toughest domestic test of the season so far.

Ernesto Valverde’s men head to the Wanda Metropolitano, top of the league and still yet to taste defeat, but face an Atleti team who are also unbeaten in the league.

Here’s a few things to look forward to ahead of a really tasty fixture:

Atletico to give Barcelona’s defence a real test

The Barcelona defence has looked superb so far this season, conceding only two goals in La Liga and none at all in the Champions League.

However, they face a tough evening on Saturday and it will be interesting to see how they will fare.

Valverde is likely to go with Jordi Alba, Gerard Pique, Samuel Umtiti and probably Nelson Semedo – although he has tended to leave Semedo out of away trips.

The biggest danger is obviously Antoine Griezmann, but both Angel Correa and Yannick Carrasco have three La Liga goals already this season.

Barca have kept clean sheets in their last three games in all competitions, another on Saturday would bode extremely well for the future.

Barcelona v Espanyol - La Liga Photo by Manuel Queimadelos Alonso/Getty Images

Messi loves playing Atletico Madrid

Lionel Messi was at it again in midweek, hitting a quite brilliant hat-trick to fire Argentina into the World Cup finals and he may well be looking forward to taking on Atletico.

However, it remains to be seen how much his midweek exertions, played at high altitude in Quito remember, have taken out of the little genius who has played every single minute for Barca so far.

What we do know is that Messi possesses a simply fantastic record against Atleti, who are one of his favourite opponents.

In 34 games against the Rojiblancos, Messi has 27 goals, he scored 12 in 17 games at the Vicente Calderon and, well, he looked in pretty decent form in midweek.

Club Atletico de Madrid v FC Barcelona - La Liga Photo by Denis Doyle/Getty Images

Can Barcelona inflict a first La Liga defeat at the Wanda Metropolitano?

Barcelona will make their first appearance at the Wanda Metropolitano on Saturday, and will be hoping to inflict a first La Liga defeat on Atletico at their new ground.

True, Diego Simeone’s side have only played twice at home in La Liga this season, beating Sevilla and Malaga, but they haven’t even conceded a goal yet.

Yet they are not unbeatable, Chelsea won 2-1 at the Wanda in the Champions League in September and another win for Barca would put them a massive nine points ahead of Atleti already. Massive.

Atletico Madrid v Chelsea FC - UEFA Champions League Photo by Gonzalo Arroyo Moreno/Getty Images

How will Barcelona get on against Atletico Madrid this weekend? Let us know your thoughts and predictions in the comments below!

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