Barcelona aims for another win in La Liga, facing Alaves away this Saturday evening.
Xavi’s team, fourth in the standings, comes from a 1-0 victory against Osasuna. Alaves, on a winning streak, recently defeated Almeria 3-0.
Alaves hasn’t won against Barcelona since September 2016 but is in great shape, winning four of their last five games in all competitions.
They’ve moved up to 11th place, ten points clear of relegation, after securing 10 points in their last four games.
Alaves now targets a top-10 finish, being just three points behind Getafe, with a strong home record this season.
They face Barcelona and Villarreal next, followed by matches against Real Betis and Mallorca.
After promoting from Segunda Division playoffs, Alaves aims to replicate or improve their ninth-place finish from the 2016-17 season.
Barcelona enters after a 1-0 win over Osasuna, with Vitor Roque scoring his first club goal.
Despite a recent loss to Villarreal, Xavi announced his departure at the season’s end.
Barcelona, still in the title race, has won four of their last five league games and competes in the Champions League.
Their upcoming matches include Alaves, Granada, and Celta Vigo before facing Napoli in the Champions League.
Barcelona has the third-best away record this season and beat Alaves 2-1 in their last meeting.
Alaves misses Aleksandar Sedlar due to injury, and Andoni Gorosabel is suspended.
Nahuel Tenaglia might replace Gorosabel, with Samu Omorodion expected to lead the attack again.
Barcelona has several injuries, including Ferran Torres, and might miss Inigo Martinez, who is nearing recovery.
Fermin Lopez could replace Torres, with Andreas Christensen possibly returning to defense.
Alaves possible starting lineup:
Tenaglia, Marin, Duarte, Lopez;
Vicente, Guridi, Rioja;
Barcelona possible starting lineup:
Kounde, Araujo, Christensen, Cancelo;
Gundogan, Pedri, F de Jong;
Yamal, Lewandowski, F Lopez
Prediction: Alaves 1-2 Barcelona
This match could go any way, given Alaves’ form. However, Barcelona’s need for points in the title race leads us to predict a close win for them.