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How will Barcelona line up against Chelsea?

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Barcelona v Espanyol - Spanish Copa del Rey Photo by Alex Caparros/Getty Images

Barcelona head to Chelsea on Tuesday for one of their biggest games of their season so far, as the knockout stages of the Champions League begin.

Ernesto Valverde will be without Philippe Coutinho as he is cup-tied, while Nelson Semedo is suspended for the trip to Stamford Bridge.

So just how should Barcelona line up against the Blues? Let’s take a look.

Defence

With Semedo suspended and Gerard Pique fit, Ernesto Valverde’s defence virtually picks itself. Marc-Andre ter Stegen will continue in goal with Sergio Roberto and Jordi Alba at full-back.

At the heart of the defence Pique will partner Samuel Umtiti, although Thomas Vermaelen and Yerry Mina are both fit, ready and in the squad in case of any late injuries.

Barcelona v Valencia - Copa Del Rey Photo by Alex Caparros/Getty Images

Midfield

This is where it gets tricky as Valverde has plenty of options in midfield and it will be interesting to see who he goes for.

The most likely option is a midfield four of Paulinho, Ivan Rakitic, Sergio Busquets and Andres Iniesta, which is the quartet that started the game against Eibar.

Yet Valverde could throw in a surprise, he’s not been shy to throw Andre Gomes into the team this season, Ousmane Dembele is fit again and Aleix Vidal and Denis Suarez are also in the squad.

Real Betis v Barcelona - La Liga Photo by Aitor Alcalde/Getty Images

Attack

Anything other than a frontline of Lionel Messi and Luis Suarez would be a huge surprise, with Messi hoping to score against Chelsea for the first time in his career.

Valverde did leave Messi on the bench earlier in the competition against Juventus, but it’s unlikely to happen again and the Argentine will surely be desperate to end his drought against the Blues.

Suarez also heads into the game in good goalscoring form, he has 20 for the season, but none yet in the Champions League.

FC Barcelona v Chapecoense - Joan Gamper Trophy Photo by Alex Caparros/Getty Images

Possible starting XI: Ter Stegen; Roberto, Pique, Umtiti, Alba; Paulinho, Rakitic, Busquets, Iniesta; Messi, Suarez.

How do you think Barcelona should line up against Chelsea? Let us know your thoughts and lineups in the comments below!