Barcelona vs Athletic Club match preview and predictions for Sunday’s LaLiga match. Read on for the head-to-head, team news and predicted lineups as these sides meet yet again.
- DATE: Sunday 31st January 2021
- KICK-OFF: 21:00 (local time)
- STADIUM: Camp Nou
- COMPETITION: LaLiga
Barcelona vs Athletic Club Preview
Barcelona and Athletic Club clash for the third time this month at Camp Nou on Sunday evening. If this one is as good as the previous two meetings, we could be in for quite a game and the football we’ve seen so far from Marcelino’s Athletic suggests Barcelona could be really tested here.
Marcelino’s first game as Athletic boss was the reverse league fixture at San Mames. Despite going ahead early on, Barcelona were much the better side in that match with Pedri and Leo Messi combining brilliantly as the Catalans ran out 3-2 winners. That feels like an eternity ago now with both sides having endured busy months in league and cup.
Athletic gained revenge with a 3-2 win of their own in the Supercopa Final against Barcelona in Seville 11 days later. A stunning strike from Inaki Williams helped an increasingly dynamic Athletic seal just their second trophy since 1984 and that sets things up nicely for the third chapter as the sides meet once again.
Barcelona haven’t lost a game inside 90 minutes since a disastrous evening against Juventus in early December. There have been positives such as the evolution of Frenkie de Jong into a goalscoring midfield player while Leo Messi has looked more like his old self in front of goal. However improvements may still be needed if Barcelona are going to be competitive in the Champions League which resumes in a few weeks.
As for Athletic, they put in another fine display on Monday night, hammering Getafe 5-1 at San Mames. They really have stepped up a few gears since Marcelino took charge and they will head to Camp Nou full of belief and really believing in their ability to get a result.
Head to Head
- Last 6 Competitive Meetings: 2 Barcelona Wins, 3 Athletic Wins, 1 Draw.
- Athletic were 3-2 winners in the Supercopa Final earlier this month while Barcelona won 3-2 at San Mames in LaLiga, also since the turn of the year.
- Athletic haven’t won on any of their last 24 trips to Camp Nou.
- They’ve only scored once on their last 4 league visits.
Sergio Busquets is suspended for Barcelona while Sergi Roberto is rated doubtful.
Íñigo Martínez is carrying an injury but may be involved here. Otherwise Athletic don’t have any major selection problems.
Predicted Barcelona Starting Lineup:
Ter Stegen – Alba, Lenglet, Araujo, Mingueza – De Jong, Pjanic – Dembele, Pedri, Messi – Griezmann (4-2-3-1)
Predicted Athletic Starting Lineup:
Simon – Yuri, Nunez, Yeray, Capa – Muniain, D. Garcia, Vencedor, De Marcos – R. Garcia, Williams (4-4-2)
Barcelona vs Athletic Club Predictions
Score Prediction: Barcelona 3-2 Athletic Club
Athletic suddenly look like a team with a goal or two in them with Inaki Williams and Raul Garcia combining well up front in a 4-4-2 system. They have asked real questions of this unconvincing Barcelona defence in the two recent meetings, but at Camp Nou you’d still expect Messi and co to emerge victorious. Don’t rule out another 3-2!
Barcelona vs Athletic Club Betting Tips (18+)
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