The latest instalment of the Derbi Barceloni will kick off on Wednesday night (21:00) with Barcelona and Espanyol desperate for three points at opposite ends of La Liga table.
The Blaugrana have had some teething issues under Quique Setien since the Spaniard’s arrival in January, with talk of unrest behind the scenes, but the Catalan club put those reported grievances to one side as they comprehensively beat Villarreal 4-1 over the weekend.
They remain four points behind table-toppers Real Madrid in this season’s title race and cannot afford to have further points fall by the wayside in their next four matches. A win over Espanyol will keep the pressure ramped up on Los Blancos, and that almost seems a foregone conclusion given the visitors’ current plight.
Barcelona’s local rivals are in dire straits at the moment and look destined to leave La Liga unless a miracle takes shape. Abelardo Fernandez’s side lost their proverbial six-pointer against 19th-placed Leganes on Sunday and now sit bottom with 11 points separating them from safety.
Even a win over their greatest adversaries won’t be enough to lift the mood at the RCDE Stadium as their stint in the top-flight appears to be coming to an end.
Where to watch Barcelona vs Espanyol on TV:
- UK: LaLigaTV
- US: beIN SPORTS
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Where to live stream Barcelona vs Espanyol:
UK: Bet365* are streaming this match live for account holders. Those without a Bet365 account already who are interested in streaming Barcelona vs Espanyol live can take advantage of this service by following the simple steps below.
- Click on this link.
- ‘Join now’ and enter details.
- Log in and fund the new account.
- Pick the desired event from among the ‘live now’ or ‘schedule’ sections in Bet365’s ‘live streaming’ category.
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Barcelona & Espanyol’s previous line-ups:
- Barcelona (vs Villarreal): Ter Stegen; Semedo, Pique, Lenglet, Alba; Vidal, Roberto, Busquets; Griezmann, Messi, Suarez.
- Espanyol (vs Leganes): D Lopez; J Lopez, Cabrera, Bernardo, Pedrosa; Lopez, Roca, Darder, Embarba; Lei, De Tomas.
Barca will continue to be without Samuel Umtiti who has suffered another knee injury and could be out for the remainder of the season. Espanyol will travel to the Camp Nou without ex-West Ham striker Jonathan Calleri, who is suspended after picking up two yellow cards against Leganes on Sunday.
Players to watch:
- Barcelona: Ansu Fati. The teenage sensation enjoyed a meteoric rise this season and continued his fine form in the Barca jersey by coming off the bench on Sunday to score the fourth goal in his side’s 4-1 rout over Villarreal. The 17-year-old collected the ball out wide before ghosting into the box and wrong-footing Sergio Asenjo, bringing up goal number seven for the season. Fati may not be a shoo-in to start under Setien, such is the wealth of talent at Barca‘s disposal, but he is all but guaranteed to play a part at some point in this game, and if he continues to impress when on the turf, he could soon cement a consistent first-team slot.
- Espanyol: Wu Lei. Goals have been few and far between for Espanyol this season, with no player finding the back of the net more than four times in La Liga. One of those is Chinese forward Wu Lei, who relocated from Shanghai SIPG last season and has been a useful, if not transformative, outlet for the Catalan club. Barca have proven susceptible at the back this season, so if Wu Lei can quickly establish a threatening link-up with strike partner Raul de Tomas in the opening stanza at the Camp Nou, then an upset could be on the table, but given Espanyol’s current form, that does not seem likely.
Scoreline prediction: Barcelona 3-0 Espanyol
La Liga 2019/20 recent form:
- Barcelona: WDDWD
- Espanyol: LLLLL