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How will Barcelona line up against Athletic?

Ronald Koeman’s men are at San Mames on Wednesday

SD Huesca v FC Barcelona - La Liga Santander Photo by Pedro Salado/Quality Sport Images/Getty Images

Barcelona continue what is a busy start to 2021 with a trip to Athletic on Wednesday in La Liga.

The hosts will be under new management after Gaizka Garitano was sacked after victory over Elche. Athletic subsequently confirmed that Marcelino will take over.

Barcelona head into the match after a narrow win over Huesca but will surely need to produce an improved display if they are to take home all three points.

Let’s look at how they might line up:


ESP: SD Huesca-FC Barcelona. La Liga Santander. Photo by Pressinphoto/Icon Sport via Getty Images

Ronald Koeman reverted back to a four-man defense against Huesca after dabbling with three center-backs and may decide to stick with the same backline.

Ronald Araujo and Clement Lenglet were pretty solid at the weekend, while Sergino Dest and Jordi Alba could continue on the flanks.

The Barca boss does have options if he wants to freshen things up. Oscar Mingueza could come in at center-back or on the right and Junior Firpo is also available.


SD Huesca v FC Barcelona - La Liga Santander Photo by Eric Alonso/Getty Images

It’s unlikely there will be too many surprises in midfield given Koeman doesn’t seem interested in handing Carles Alena or Riqui Puig any starts in La Liga.

The Dutchman is likely to simply pick two from Frenkie de Jong, Miralem Pjanic and Sergio Busquets. De Jong was on target last time out and now has two goals and an assist from his last five starts.


SD Huesca v FC Barcelona - La Liga Santander Photo by Pedro Salado/Quality Sport Images/Getty Images

Antoine Griezmann was dropped against Huesca but will be hoping to get the nod against Athletic. The Frenchman could certainly do with a goal to boost confidence after a run of seven appearances without finding the back of the net.

Lionel Messi and Pedri look guaranteed starters, unless there are any fitness concerns, while Ousmane Dembele could also continue after a bright showing on his return from injury.

Possible XI: Ter Stegen; Dest, Araujo, Lenglet, Alba; Pjanic, De Jong; Dembele, Messi, Pedri; Griezmann.

How do you think Barcelona should line up against Athletic? Let us know your thoughts, predictions and teams in the comments below!

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