Barcelona vs Espanyol predictions and match preview for Saturday’s LaLiga fixture. Read on for expert analysis, the head-to-head, team news and predicted lineups as the Xavi Hernandez returns to Camp Nou.
|Date||Saturday 20th November 2021|
|Kick-Off||21:00 (local time)|
Barcelona vs Espanyol Preview
All eyes are on the Camp Nou this weekend as Barcelona legend Xavi Hernández returns as head coach of his boyhood club. His Barça side host Espanyol in the Derbi Barceloní. We should have goals and should be in for a great game.
Barcelona are currently sitting ninth in the table. They blew a three goal lead in their last outing drawing 3-3 with Celta Vigo but there is a feel good factor back at the club this week. Xavi’s return should bring with it a brand of football that the club knows very well while the signing of another club legend in the shape of Dani Alves also helps improve the mood around Camp Nou, although he won’t be eligible to play until January.
Things seem to be on the up for the Catalan side but only time will tell whether this really proves to be a turning point in the club’s fortunes. Xavi will want his side to attack from the off and will want a convincing win on his debut. What will be interesting to see is with several players only returning from international duty late in the week and a number of players out injured, is how Xavi will be able to get his ideas across in such a short space of time.
Espanyol are on the same number of points as their Catalan rivals and would love nothing more than to spoil Xavi’s homecoming at the Camp Nou. Vicente Moreno’s side are looking good and in their last outing they beat Granada 2-0 with star striker Raúl de Tomás getting on the scoresheet which helped him to get a call up from Spain boss Luis Enrique in which he made his debut.
Los Periquitos will have to be at their best to get something out of this game though. Their away form hasn’t been great though and history is not on their side. They haven’t picked up a win here since 2009 but they’ll be very hungry to change that on Saturday.
Head to Head
- Last 6 Competitive Meetings: 4 Barcelona Wins, 2 Draws.
- Barcelona have won their last 4 home games against Espanyol to nil.
- Espanyol’s last derby win was a 1-0 home victory in the Copa del Rey in 2018.
- The most recent meetings came in LaLiga in the 2019/20 season with Barcelona winning 1-0 at Camp Nou while the sides drew 2-2 at the RCDE Stadium.
Barcelona are still without some key players. Ansu Fati, Pedri, Sergi Roberto and Sergiño Dest will all be missing this weekend.
Espanyol will be missing both Keidi Bare and Oscar Gil who have both suffered knee injuries.
Barcelona vs Espanyol Predictions
Score Prediction: Barcelona 3-1 Espanyol
If there was a time for Espanyol to pick up a rare away derby win then it would have been this season. Barça have conceded 15 goals so far, only scoring 19 but with new boss Xavi coming in, it could also be the worst time to play them. Camp Nou will be rocking and Vicente Moreno’s side will be fighting an uphill battle from the start. The atmosphere is different all of a sudden, and there seems to be a buzz around the club again and this could be the difference maker and Barcelona should get the win despite their injury woes.
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