Valencia vs Barcelona predictions and match preview for Sunday’s LaLiga fixture. Read on for expert analysis, the head-to-head, team news and predicted lineups as two fallen giants clash at Mestalla.
|Sunday 20th February 2022
|16:15 (local time)
Valencia vs Barcelona Preview
One of the standout fixtures this weekend in LaLiga comes from Mestalla where Barcelona are in town to face Valencia. It promises to be a real contrast of styles as Pepe Bordalas and Xavi meet for the first time as coaches.
We can expect Valencia to make life as difficult as possible for Barcelona with their high intensity style of play capable of causing problems for the visitors and a big crowd at Mestalla always makes a difference in these kinds of games. Los Che don’t take any real form into this game though with just 2 points from their last 6 outings in LaLiga a concern. It has seen them slip to 12th place and the Copa del Rey is starting to look like by far their best chance of qualifying for Europe this season.
Progress in that competition has helped keep spirits up but Valencia are in the midst of a difficult run of fixtures in LaLiga. By the completion of this game, they will have faced all of last season’s top 5 in the space of 6 games. They could have done with making the most of a more winnable fixture last time out against Alaves but slipped to a disappointing 2-1 defeat away to the Basque side.
There are clear defensive flaws which Barcelona will be hungry to exploit here. The Catalans made significant attacking recruits in January and have started to show more signs of life in the final third in recent games. Their 4-2 win over Atletico Madrid had the potential to be a real launchpad for this new-look side but a fortnight on, there’s reason to doubt that was the case.
They needed a last gasp header from Luuk de Jong to salvage a point from the Catalan derby last weekend against Espanyol. The Dutchman is proving to be a far more useful signing than anyone imagined but it’s fair to say if Plan A was working effectively, he wouldn’t be seeing so much game-time. Barcelona were also in action on Thursday night, but were held to a 1-1 home draw by Napoli leaving them with a real battle next week in Naples as they bid to secure progress in the Europa League.
Head to Head
- Last 6 Competitive Meetings: 3 Barcelona Wins, 2 Valencia Wins, 1 Draw.
- Barcelona won both meetings last year, including a 3-2 win at this ground last May.
- Valencia’s last victory over the Catalans came via a 2-0 margin at home in January 2020.
- The last 4 clashes at Mestalla in LaLiga have produced a win apiece and two draws.
Valencia are likely to be missing Gabriel Paulista to injury again, although he is reportedly nearing fitness.
Barcelona are missing Gerard Pique and Dani Alves to suspension. Memphis is nearing fitness but may not be risked yet.
Valencia vs Barcelona Predictions
Score Prediction: Valencia 2-2 Barcelona
Both sides have defensive flaws that can be exploited and both are likely to be missing centre-backs with Gabriel Paulista and Gerard Pique significant absentees. It could be a good one for the neutrals as a result and a score draw could be on the cards here.
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