Barcelona boss Xavi will again be missing a number of first-team players for this weekend’s La Liga contest with Alaves at Mendizorrotza Stadium.
Samuel Umtiti, Eric Garcia and Sergi Roberto are again definitely absent through injury, while Memphis Depay, who continues to be linked with a move away from the club, remains a doubt due to muscular overload.
Ansu Fati left the field in tears against Athletic Bilbao in the Copa del Rey on Thursday, having seemingly suffered an injury relapse, and the Spain international is now set to spend another period on the sidelines, although the extent of the issue remains unclear.
Gavi, meanwhile, is suspended due to his red card against Granada in the league, which could open the door for Frenkie de Jong to feature alongside Sergio Busquets and Pedri in a midfield three.
Xavi is expected to recall both Frenkie de Jong and Luuk de Jong back into his starting XI, while Ferran Jutgla could be in line for a spot in the front three, with Ousmane Dembele unlikely to be considered, as the France international’s future continues to be called into question.
Barcelona have told Dembele to leave the club this month, but the World Cup winner has insisted that he will not be forced out of the door.
There is a chance that there could be a switch to a midfield four for this match, with Nico Gonzalez potentially in line for a recall, but Dani Alves should retain his spot at right-back.
Barcelona possible starting lineup: Ter Stegen; Alves, Araujo, Pique, Alba; Pedri, Busquets, F de Jong; Torres, L de Jong, Jutgla