After an intense week of training at St. George’s Park, FC Barcelona are looking to put their practice into action on Saturday when they take on Celtic in their first match of the International Champions Cup (7.00pm CET).
At the disposal of Luis Enrique will be all but two of the players who travelled on Monday to the English FA’s facilities, as Adriano completed a move to Besiktas and Martin Montoya was given permission to leave the camp on Saturday morning. The manager, therefore, has eleven first team players to choose from, and 12 from Barça B.
The majority of those who reached the latter stages of the Copa America and Euro 2016 are still on vacation, but one of those who cut their holidays short was Leo Messi, who is ready for selection.
Aside from the familiar faces, the match also provides the manager with the chance of checking up on some of the youngsters who have joined the tour.
On the opposing bench will be Brendan Rodgers, who coached Luis Suarez at Liverpool. Celtic have already played one match in the friendly competition against Premier League champions Leicester City. The Glaswegians played out a 1-1 draw with the Foxes, but lost 6-5 on penalties.
Barça and Celtic have met on 12 occasions in the past, with the Catalans winning seven and losing twice. The most recent meetings between the pair was in the 2013/14 Champions League group stage, when Barça won 1-0 in Scotland and 6-1 in Barcelona.
Saturday’s match kicks off at 6.00pm local time (7.00pm CET) at the Aviva Stadium in Dublin which has a capacity of just over 51,000 spectators.