This El Clasico, despite not consisting of the two GOATs will be played with the same alacrity and the ferocious rivalry is given to continue; for it cannot be avoided when players with the profound desire to win- like Pique , Ramos, Suarez, Bale etc. are going to be on the pitch to battle till the last minute.
Barca have already declared their 19 man squad to face Real Madrid. The following players make the squad:
Goalkeepers: Ter Stegen, Cillesen
Defenders: Pique, Lenglet, Alba, Semedo, Roberto, Chumi
Midfielders: Busquets, Rakitic, Arthur, Rafinha, Vidal, Denis Suarez
Forwards: O. Dembele, Coutinho, Malcom, Suarez, Munir
Ten of these players have cemented their positions in the starting eleven and these are : Ter Stegen, Pique, Leglet, Roberto, Alba, Busquets, Rakitic, Arthur, Coutinho and Suarez. But it would be interesting to see another player which Valverde chooses to start in the next game. He might choose one among these three:-
O. Dembele: He did not made a significant impact in the last game so Valverde might consider to drop him. His misplaced passes against big opponents like Real Madrid can lead to counter attacks and also increase our vulnerability. A good performance in the game, if he gets picked, will give him the huge opportunity to win the hearts of the fans and their confidence on the player.
Rafinha: If Valverde decides to take control of the midfield and go out with more midfielders Rafinha might be his eleventh man. Also, the Brazilian scored the opening goal against Inter Milan in the last match which speaks for his form.
Vidal: An experienced, physical, box to box workhorse, might be the choice of Valverde as the Chilean did well in the last game for the time he was on the pitch. He has expressed his determination to win in the interview when he was signed and this is the match where we can get the best out of this player given his distaste for Real Madrid.
Valverde can consider going 4-4-2 if he chooses to play Rafinha or Vidal, and 4-3-3 if he decides to pick Dembele.Three among Denis Suarez, Malcom, Vidal or Munir will be Valverde’s preferred choice as substitutes to bring on in the game.