Xavi almost copied the eleven that beat Getafe in San Mamés

This Sunday's match at San Mamés is very important for Barcelona, ​​which can re-engage in the fight for the League.

Oliver Thansan
Oliver Thansan
03 March 2024 Sunday 03:31
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Xavi almost copied the eleven that beat Getafe in San Mamés

This Sunday's match at San Mamés is very important for Barcelona, ​​which can re-engage in the fight for the League. If they beat Athletic, the new finalist of the Cup, the Blaugrana team, in good dynamics, would be 6 points behind the leadership of Real Madrid. That value emerges from the eleven that Xavi has chosen for the duel in Bilbao and which is almost a carbon copy of the one that thrashed Getafe on the last day.

There is only one change, that of Pedri, who rested and only played the last seven minutes against the Madrid team in Montjuïc and who in San Mamés takes João Félix's place.

Xavi already announced in the preview that he imagined a game plan very similar to last week, with space behind the rival's defense. Hence, he continues the approach with Raphinha on the right wing to cut into space and be very vertical.

The Brazilian winger, who scored a goal and provided an assist against Getafe, was already the author of the Blaugrana's victory last season in this same setting (0-1). Raphinha was injured on January 24 when Barcelona visited San Mamés in the Copa del Rey and was eliminated in extra time (4-2).

This means that Lamine Yamal, after eight starts in a row, remains on the bench for the second consecutive game. The youth player, despite his youth, was the best Blaugrana in the Cup.

There is no doubt that the coaching staff really liked the team's performance since they are betting on the same defense, with Cubarsí at the axis of the defense, and the same midfield, with Christensen, again as the pivot for the sixth game.

Finally Iñigo Martínez will have to settle for starting on the bench in his first return to San Mamés, which was his home for five and a half seasons until last summer when he arrived at Barça after fulfilling his contract.

Barcelona will feature Ter Stegen, Koundé, Cubarsi, Araújo, Cancelo, Christensen, De Jong, Gündogan, Raphinha, Pedri and Lewandowski.

For Athletic, Ernesto Valverde almost changed the entire team compared to the one that beat Atlético on Thursday to get a place in the Copa del Rey final. Only Prados, Paredes, Iñaki Williams and Guruzeta repeat since he has the suspensions of Nico Williams and Vivian.