With Neymar out, someone will have to step into the forward line. Arda Turan returned to the squad from injury but it’s a big ask to go straight into the starting lineup. Barring some more outside-the-box thinking from Luis Enrique, we will see Paco Alcácer start. That’s the confirmed lineup for El Clásico.
Paco struggled in the early stages of the season since his transfer from Valencia. However, since then, he’s started to feel like more of a part of the squad, improving his game and scoring more often. But today, Paco has to go one further.
If Barcelona have any prayer of retaining the La Liga crown, it will likely be with a win today over Real Madrid in El Clasico. And if that is to happen, all 11 players, plus the substitutes, have to perform.
Replacing Neymar is a huge task, one that is very unfair to ask of Paco. But if he does it today, he will strengthen his claim to being a part of the squad for years to come.