On Saturday at 7.00pm, live on Barça TV+, the blaugranes face their final preseason fixture in Ronald Koeman's first game at Camp Nou as coach
Football returns to Camp Nou after a short respite of just 42 days this summer as Barça face newly promoted Primera side Elche in the Joan Gamper Trophy game which kicks off at 7.00pm CEST on Saturday.
The contest is the third on preseason for Ronald Koeman's squad. In the Dutchman's debut as coach the blaugranes defeated Nàstic de Tarragona 3-1 at the Estadi Johan Cruyff before going on to beat Girona by the same score at the same venue in their second run out.
Opponents in the Joan Gamper Trophy game Elche won promotion back to the Spanish First Division for the first time since 2015 just last month when they beat Girona 1-0 on aggregate over two legs in the Second Division promotion play off. That victory allowed them to join Huesca and Cádiz as this season's new boys in the Primera División and they come to Camp Nou still in preseason themselves under new coach Jorge Almirón with their league debut to come on the weekend of the 26/27 September against Real Sociedad, the same weekend Barça make their debut against Villarreal.
The squad and the coach
With Miralem Pjanic now training with the rest of the squad there could be a debut for the Bosnian midfielder for Barça on Saturday with coach Koeman talking up the possibility of seeing the former Juventus man in the Gamper Trophy game in a pre-match chat with Barça TV+. The Dutchman also talked up the contest as a 'good test against a fellow La Liga side' ahead of the traditional preseason curtain raiser at Camp Nou.
The squad is as follows: Neto, Iñaki Peña, Arnau Tenas, N. Semedo, Piqué, R. Araujo, Sergio, Aleñá, Griezmann, Pjanic, Messi, O. Dembélé, Coutinho, Lenglet, Trincao, Jordi Alba, Braithwaite, S. Roberto, F. De Jong, Junior, Pedri and Konrad.
Ansu Fati is included after being declared fi on Saturday morning.