Barcelona are back in action in La Liga this week with another important fixture as they take on Elche at the Camp Nou on Wednesday. Barcelona have been inconsistent in recent weeks and cannot afford to drop points in this fixture.
Elche are currently in 18th place in the La Liga standings and are likely to face an intense relegation battle in the coming weeks. The away side can move out of the relegation zone with a positive result in this match and will be intent on making a statement in this fixture.
Barcelona's impeccable La Liga run was halted by Cadiz over the weekend and the Catalans are now eight points behind Atletico Madrid in the La Liga title race. Barcelona have largely failed to meet expectations this season and have a point to prove going into this match.
Barcelona vs Elche Head-to-Head
Barcelona have an impeccable record against Elche and have won seven out of eight matches played between the two teams. Elche have never defeated Barcelona in an official La Liga fixture and will need to play out of their skins in this match.
The reverse fixture between the two teams took place last month and ended in a comfortable 2-0 victory for Barcelona. Frenkie de Jong was at his best on the day and will need to play a pivotal role in this fixture.
Barcelona form guide in La Liga: D-W-W-W-W
Elche form guide in La Liga: W-L-D-L-L
Barcelona vs Elche Team News
Ronald Araujo has been Barcelona's best defender this season but might not be able to recover in time for this game. Philippe Coutinho, Ansu Fati, and Sergi Roberto are recuperating from long-term injuries and will also have to sit out of this fixture.
Riqui Puig and Miralem Pjanic were benched against Cadiz and might make their way to the starting eleven against Elche. Francisco Trincao has been impressive in recent weeks and is also likely to play a part in this match.
Injured: Philippe Coutinho, Ansu Fati, Sergi Roberto
Doubtful: Ronald Araujo
Ivan Marcone picked up his fifth yellow card of the season against Eibar over the weekend and is suspended for this fixture. Diego Gonzalez, Fidel, and Victor Rodriguez are carrying knocks and might not feature in this game.
Doubtful: Diego Gonzalez, Fidel, Victor Rodriguez
Suspended: Ivan Marcone
Barcelona vs Elche Predicted XI
Barcelona Predicted XI (4-3-3): Marc-Andre ter Stegen; Sergino Dest, Oscar Mingueza, Gerard Pique, Jordi Alba; Miralem Pjanic, Frenkie de Jong, Riqui Puig; Ousmane Dembele, Francisco Trincao, Lionel Messi
Elche Predicted XI (4-2-3-1): Edgar Badia; Johan Mojica, Gonzalo Verdu, Dani Calvo, Antonio Barragan; Omenuke Mfulu, Raul Guti; Emiliano Rigoni, Tete Morente, Josan; Lucas Boye
Barcelona vs Elche Prediction
Barcelona will have to appease a seething fanbase this week after a late penalty cost the Catalans three relatively easy points over the weekend. Lionel Messi and his teammates created a flurry of chances against Cadiz but their lack of cutting edge has now severely hampered Barcelona's chances of winning silverware this season.
Elche's defensive record has not been particularly impressive this season and the away side will need a miracle to come away from this fixture with a clean sheet. Barcelona have better players in their ranks and will have nowhere to hide if they drop points on Wednesday.
Prediction: Barcelona 3-1 Elche