Barcelona vs Espanyol: Preview, Prediction & Betting Tips
Barcelona vs Espanyol: Preview, Prediction & Betting Tips.
This betting preview contains recent form, possible lineups, injury news, match predictions and betting tips for Barcelona vs Espanyol.
Fixture: Barcelona vs Espanyol
League: La Liga
Venue: Camp Nou
Date: 18th December 2017
Kick-off: 7:45pm GMT
With Real Madrid out of action this weekend due to Club World Cup Championship commitments, Luis Enrique and his men would see this local derby against Espanyol as an opportunity to close the gap on their title rivals. With Andres Iniesta back – the man who knits everything all together – Barcelona can find the fluid rhythm they have been missing during his absence.
Espanyol find themselves in a healthy position in 9th place and have suffered defeat once away so far this season and have kept more clean sheets away from their own ground compared to in front of their own fans – 57% to 38% respectively. Quique Sanchez Flores has moulded a sturdy and efficient team, just like he did in his time at Watford and should be granted huge credit for the work he is doing at RCDE Stadium.
One factor that swings this tie in Barcelona’s favour is the return to form of Andres Iniesta, heaven only knows how Barcelona will replace him when he eventually calls it a day. When he’s on the pitch, Messi and Neymar turn it up to another level.
Certainly, Quique Flores is doing a great job at Espanyol and they are not one to roll over easily. Barcelona desperately need the three points however, so a home win is on the horizon.
Barcelona: Stegen; Roberto, Pique, Umtiti, Alba; Busquets, Gomes, Rakitic; Neymar, Suarez, Messi
Espanyol: Diego Lopez; Sanchez, Lopez, Reyes, Martin; Baptistao, Jurado, Fuego, Piatti; Moreno, Caicedo
Barcelona: Mathieu (out), Suarez (susp)
Espanyol: Piatti (out), Alvarez (out)