Preview : Barcelona – Zaragoza

Keita scoring the opener in last year's 6-1 victory.

Week 27 and we host 15th place Zaragazoa at the Camp Nou.  Now, I am a strong believer that no match nor opponent should ever be underestimated, but saying that, a home game to Zaragoza before a huge Champions League match is the kind of fixture one can live with.  Saying that though, we have to get 3 points tonight.  In this tight La Liga race, this isn’t the type of match we should drop points.  The boys just need to go out there, start off ruthlessly, slot a few goals past them and then play it out.

There are however some interesting dynamics coming into this game, none more so than the absence of our “mister”.  If you refer to the Weekly Wrap Up posted earlier, you can get a more in detail story of the back problems that will see him miss tomorrow’s game.  That means his trusted number 2 Tito Vilanova will take charge of what I believe is his second game.  This brings an interesting dynamic into it.  Considering the huge tie next week Tuesday, one would assume if Pep were there as normal he would think about resting a few.  Now, resting satrs isn’t one of Pep’s normal managerial beliefs, but I would assume at least 2 or 3, like Xavi, Iniesta, or Busquets, would be sitting out.  But, with Vilanova in charge, he may not want to do so and possibly get a result that reflects on him poorly.  Honestly though, I’m sure he and Pep will speak in length before the game and Vilanova will essentially just oversee what Pep wants.

Puyol began training normally with the first team yesterday afternoon, which bodes well for his inclusion next Tuesday.  I do not think he will play tomorrow, though maybe they put him on 2nd half for a bit of a competitive run out.  No talk of Victor Valdes at all this week, so I fear he may not make it against Arsenal.  That means Pinto will be in goal again and despite some riskyish distribution has looked solid enough.  Pique will definitely start as he is suspended next week.  Then I expect Dani and Abidal to be in as per normal, but who will occupy the left is up for grabs at this rate.  I think midfield is where we will see the most changes if anything.  Upfront I think it will be the normal 3, especially from the start.  I hope Villa has a solid game tomorrow night, he needs it more than most.  Messi will play all 90 minutes because that’s just what he does.

Zaragoza are now under the stewardship of former Atletico Madrid and Mexico boss Javier Aguirre.  And he has a whole heap of absentee issues tomorrow.  Number one keeper Leo Franco is injured, as well as key midfielder Lafita.  The others injured are Braulio and Bouthahar.  Add to that, 3 starts in Gabi, Contini, and Ponzio are suspended.  All those starts being out isn’t a good sign for a team whose away record reads 1W, 6D, and 5L with only 7 goals scored in those 12 matches.  Of those that are starting, the names that are most familiar are former Liverpool and Atletico Madrid forward Sinama-Pongolle and former blaugrana and Brazilian international Edmilson.  Those with deeper Liga knowledge will know Uruguayan Carlos Diogo, a real tough tackling, no nonsense kinda defender  who had a small stint at Real Madrid in 2004/5.  There is also Czech midfielder turned defender at Zaragoza Jiri Jarosi.  But the one player we should keep an eye on is young playmaker Ander Herrera.

So that’s the preview.  We won a huge match Wednesday, we have a huge match next Tuesday, but tomorrow we should only be thinking of the 90 minutes against Zaragoza.  Failure to do so could be detrimental.


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5 Responses to Preview : Barcelona – Zaragoza

  1. Lockie17 says:

    Wow every time I was going to post a new feed come up, great work guy and a excellent site!
    What a good week we have had 6 points from
    2 very difficult away games, Madrid dropping 2 points. Our injury clearing up Puyol an Valdes back in full time training and both available for Saturdays game. Madrid have injurys galore now with CR7, Lass and Gago out.
    What do people thi k of playing Milito on Tuesday, Arsenal have no RVP or the pace of Walcott? Think playing Busi at CB will Be. Big loss from our engine room, he has become such a big player. Starts a lit of moves off and moves the ball on quicker than Masch. 3 wins in the next 8 days will make me a very happy man.

  2. bc9jaCulé says:

    I can’t but salute your dedication to the provisions of this site Bboy, please keep up the generous gesture.

    As per Zaragoza, I don’t want to sound over confident but I just don’t see us sweatin’ unnecessarily before we send them off with a Manita. It’s been a while since we scored 5 goals in a match and we need as much to send freezin’ chills down the spines of Arsenal before the 2nd leg of the CL tie on Tuesday, SERIOUSLY!!!

    Barça — 5
    Zaragoza — 0

    Força Barça!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  3. Mike M says:

    Good win over Valencia, I think a few 1st teamers will be rested, to conserve energy for Arsenal, I’d like to see Masch, Adriano and Maxwell playing, maybe even Thiago… and a run out for Bojan, What has happened to JDS – haven’t heard of him for a while?

    I’ll take a 3-0 win, think Zara will play defensively, looking to frustrate us. But don’t think that’ll work.

  4. FCB-Parbo says:

    Oh please, no Milito on Tuesday. I’m always holding my breath when he has the ball, coz he just holds the ball too long. And his passing is not yet accurate and many times wondering where he has to pass the ball to. I don’t mind testing him for todays match, he has to find his rythem. I like to see Masch, he has improved so much in his game and right now he is the cleaner sweeper. I like to see Ibi too? With our MVP in great form we will surely get through. Always hoping for manita-manita-manita, ha, ha.

    BIG UP BARCA, Visca Barca!!!

  5. Muyideen Abdulganiyu says:

    It will be though for zaragoza because is going to be as same as last season when we defeated valencia,zaragoza and arsenal while Messi proved hat trick in each.Now Messi has scored valencia,i hope so with him tonight and against arsenal where to bury them alive on Tuesday night.

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