FC Barcelona vs Sporting Gijon : Predicted lineups
Barcelona manager Luis Enrique hasdecided to leave Jordi Alba and Sergi Roberto out of the touring squad for the FC Barcelona vs Sporting Gijon match on Wednesday night (17 February), in spite of the pair both being fit enough to play. The Spaniard is anticipated to field most of his starters at El Molinón, but put the pair to rest ahead of a busy run of fixtures. The Catalans have La Liga matches next against Las Palmas and Sevilla as well the significant Champions League last 16 first-leg match against Arsenal before the end of this month.
Barcelona have the chance to further extend their lead at the top position of La Liga, which currently has them four points ahead of Atletico Madrid, as the oncoming FC Barcelona vs Sporting Gijon is a game that was delayed due to their participation in the FIFA Club World Cup held in Japan.
Barca conducted their last practice session before their visit to Luis Enrique’s hometown on Tuesday morning, with Alba and Roberto also taking part. However, they were later kept out from the squad along with three rather out-of-favour players (Jordi Masip, Douglas and Sandro Ramirez) and also long-term injury victim Rafinha Alcantara.
“[Alba and Roberto] are fit, they have trained with the rest but we have left these five players out of the squad,” Luis Enrique remarked ahead of the game. Jeremy Mathieu and Ivan Rakitic are anticipated to fill those gaps in the initial line-up, only one week before they face Arsenal.
“We have our idea [about squad rotation] and know the players and how are they responding to the burden of games. But right now we are only concerned about tomorrow’s match. “
The Barca boss spoke up the significance of making the most of the remaining games but played down suggestions that moving a handsome six points clear would be the effective finish of the La Liga season.