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How will Barcelona line up against Levante in the Copa del Rey?

The holders are back in action on Thursday

FC Barcelona v Villarreal CF - La Liga Photo by David Ramos/Getty Images

Barcelona continue the defence of their Copa del Rey title on Thursday when they take on Levante in the last 16.

Ernesto Valverde is expected to rotate his squad for this match, which means we should see a mixture of fringe players and young stars.

Let’s have a look at who might feature on Thursday:


FC Barcelona v Tottenham Hotspur - UEFA Champions League Group B Photo by Alex Caparros/Getty Images

Copa del Rey keeper Jasper Cillessen will come in for Marc-Andre ter Stegen in goal, and Barcelona are likely to field a much-changed back four.

Nelson Semedo lost out to Sergi Roberto on Sunday and could come in at right-back, although Moussa Wague is also an option.

In central defence new signing Jeison Murillo could be handed his Barcelona debut. Chumi and Jorge Cuenca are also available but don’t be surprised if Valverde names one senior centre-back either.

At left-back Juan Miranda should get another run out in order to give Jordi Alba a rest.


FC Barcelona v Cultural Leonesa - Copa del Rey - Fourth Round Photo by Alex Caparros/Getty Images

This game looks the perfect opportunity to hand Carles Alena a start, Oriol Busquets might also make the starting XI too, and hopefully we’ll see Riqui Puig at some point.

Valverde should give most of his regulars the night off, and it’s even possible he might leave Ivan Rakitic out of his starting XI.

Denis Suarez looks like he might be off in the January transfer window so it seems unlikely he’ll feature, while Sergi Samper is yet to return from his injury picked up in the last round.


FC Barcelona v Cultural Leonesa - Copa del Rey - Fourth Round Photo by Alex Caparros/Getty Images

Philippe Coutinho has started Barcelona’s last four matches on the bench but can expect a recall for this game. Hopefully we’ll get to see Malcom again too.

Up front there’s a bit of an issue if reports Munir has been frozen out prove to be true.

Barcelona are short of forwards which means Luis Suarez or Lionel Messi might have to feature.

Possible XI: Cillessen; Semedo, Murillo, Lenglet, Miranda; Oriol Busquets, Alena, Arthur; Malcom, Suarez, Coutinho.

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

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