FC Barcelona (4th, 47pts) vs Elche CF (18th, 21pts)
Competition/Round: 2020-21 La Liga, Matchday 1
Barcelona Outs & Doubts: Ansu Fati, Philippe Coutinho, Sergi Roberto, Ronald Araujo (out)
Elche Outs & Doubts: Iván Marcone (out), Diego González, Fidel, Víctor Rodríguez (doubt)
Date/Time: Wednesday, February 24, 2021, 7pm CET/WAT (Barcelona & Nigeria), 6pm GMT (UK), 1pm ET, 10pm PT (USA), 11.30pm IST (India)
Venue: Camp Nou, Barcelona, Catalonia, Spain
Referee: Isidro Díaz De Mera Escuderos
VAR: Valentín Pizarro Gómez
How to watch on TV: beIN SPORTS (USA & Canada), LaLigaTV (UK), SuperSport (Nigeria), Movistar LaLiga (Spain), Not Available (India), others
Following a heartbreaking draw at home against Cádiz on Sunday, Barcelona are back in action for another La Liga match at home against a relegation candidate, with Elche visiting the Greatest Stadium on Earth on Wednesday in a game that was supposed to have taken place in the first weekend of the season but was postponed to now.
Barça should have beaten Cádiz comfortably but missed a lot of chances and gave up a bad penalty at the end which cost them two giant points, and now the Blaugrana have to work harder and count again on Atlético Madrid dropping points to enter the title race.
It is fitting for this depressing season that Barça never seem to take the final step when it comes to competing for important things, and the inability to finish off a weak opponent when they had a chance to continue a great winning run and truly put pressure on the leaders was another sign that this just doesn’t seem to be a team ready to win things.
But they can still win individual games, which they have done a lot in the league recently, and it is safe to expect a hungry team who will try and quickly get back to winning ways against an Elche side that is fighting for their lives and need to play a perfect game at Camp Nou.
But, as the Cádiz game clearly proved, you never know. Barça must be at it from the start, create a lot, not miss chances, and for once be solid at the back.
Barcelona (4-3-3): Ter Stegen; Mingueza, Piqué, Umtiti, Alba; Pjanic, De Jong, Puig; Trincão, Messi, Braithwaite
Elche (4-2-3-1): Badia; Barragán, Calvo, Verdú, Mojica; Guti, Mfulu; Josan, Morente, Rigoni; Boyé
SURELY we’re not gonna drop two points against THIS relegation candidate, right? 3-0 Barça.