Picking the Best Potential Barcelona Lineup to Face Eibar on Saturday

Kristopher Nichols
February 18, 2018

Luckily for Barca fans - and football lovers in general - Lionel Messi and Luis Suarez are sure-fire choices and are rarely dropped, even when a crucial fixture like Tuesday's game against Chelsea awaits.

Remarkably, that did not check Eibar's ambition but Jordi Alba was able to seal the points a minute from time.

Eibar did not give Barcelona a moment's rest in possession, especially in midfield, and forced the league leaders to look for long balls out of defence. Meanwhile, Barcelona are coming off a draw against Espanyol (1-1), but register a W9 D3 record away from Camp Nou. There is a high chance Los Blaugranas play with an alternative side here, as they will take on Chelsea in the UEFA Champions League next week.

Indeed, it is, our closest challengers in La Liga, Atletico Madrid, have maintained their good form and reduced the gap in the last two weeks with wins against Valencia and Malaga.

Mendilibar followed suit later on after lashing at the officials, for their failure to send Suarez to the stands in the same way they did to his player. Orellana picked the ball up on the edge of the box and unleashed a dipping effort, which clipped the top of the crossbar with ter Stegen well beaten.

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Eibar have allowed 34 goals in just 23 matches, and that is not going to cut it when going against the likes of Lionel Messi, Luis Suarez, and Philippe Coutinho. However, the Argentine's shot was at an acute angle, but he still managed to strike the inside of the far post.

However, the Chilean was sent off midway through the second half, stupidly picking up a second yellow card for kicking the ball away. They were expected to fight near the bottom of the standings this year, but they have stunned the world time and time again, and now sit in seventh place in the standings with 35 points.

Barcelona manager Ernesto Valverde said it was important that his team focus on continuing their run instead of "thinking about margins for error". Aleix Vidal could have wrapped it up in the 85th minute after being played clean through.

When Abelardo Fernandez took over at Alaves three months ago the side had just six points from 12 games and looked set for relegation, but under the guidance of the former Barcelona defender they have taken 19 points from a possible 30 and are now seven points clear of the relegation zone.

Barcelona could barely be better prepared, in terms of their league position and a place in the Copa del Rey final, for their Champions League tie with Chelsea which starts on Tuesday.

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