FC Barcelona (4th, 65pts) vs Getafe CF (15th, 31pts)*
*Points and positions at the time of writing on Wednesday
Competition/Round: 2020-21 La Liga, Matchday 31
Barcelona Outs & Doubts: Ansu Fati, Philippe Coutinho, Neto, Martin Braithwaite (out)
Getafe Outs & Doubts: Erick Cabaco, Cucho Hernández, Allan Nyom (out)
Date/Time: Thursday, April 22, 2021, 10pm CET (Barcelona), 9pm BST/WAT (UK & Nigeria), 4pm ET, 1pm PT (USA), 1.30am IST (India, Friday)
Venue: Camp Nou, Barcelona, Catalonia, Spain
Referee: Jorge Figueroa Vázquez
VAR: Alejandro José Hernández Hernández
How to watch on TV: beIN SPORTS (USA & Canada), LaLigaTV (UK), SuperSport (Nigeria), Movistar LaLiga (Spain), Not Available (India), others
Following a magical Copa del Rey Final win over Athletic Bilbao, Barcelona return to action for the first of eight decisive games in the race for the La Liga title against Getafe at GSOE.
Barça have a lot to thank Getafe for, after all it was their 0-0 draw against Real Madrid last Sunday that made the loss in El Clásico pretty much meaningless. With Real dropping points, Barça once again depend only on themselves to win the league: 8 victories in the remaining 8 matches and the title is theirs, regardless of what happens with everyone else.
So it doesn’t matter that Real Madrid are currently top of the table, five points ahead of Barça, or that Atlético could be eight points ahead if they win on Thursday. It doesn’t matter that Sevilla have overtaken the Blaugrana and are now in third place. The job is very simple: take care of business and you win La Liga.
It’s obvious that the reality is harder: Barça have a tricky schedule, which includes the visit of Atlético next month, and the start of that schedule isn’t easy either with Getafe coming to town. Despite a brutally underwhelming, relegation-threatened season for a team that has fought for Europe in the last few years, this is still a very tough team under José Bordalás, who is the sort of coach who knows how to frustrate teams that play football the way Barça do.
They will set up in a 4-4-2 and be physical, intense and organized for 90 minutes, and it’ll be an exercise in patience and poise for Ronald Koeman’s men. Barça had the chance to slip up in the Clásico, but they can’t drop points anymore. This league will go down to the wire and counting on other teams to fail is a bad idea.
Do your job, Barça. Getafe will make it hard, but you have a job to do. Do it.
Also, just leave the Super League already. Please.
Barcelona (3-5-2): Ter Stegen; Mingueza, Piqué, Lenglet; Dest, De Jong, Busquets, Pedri, Alba; Messi, Griezmann
Getafe (4-4-2): Soria; Suárez, Timor, Dakonam, Olivera; Aleñá, Maksimovic, Arambarri, Cucurella; Ünal, Mata
Every game against Getafe is brutal and sometimes tough to watch, and it could be a really long wait for the winning goals, but they will come: 2-0 Barça.