PREVIEW | FC Barcelona v Huesca

PREVIEW | FC Barcelona v Huesca

The Catalans will be looking for the three points to take them to just four behind LaLiga leaders, Atlético Madrid

After losing in the Champions League against PSG, the focus is back on LaLiga for Barça, a competition where they're unbeaten in the last 16 games. The Catalans will host Huesca at the Camp Nou (9.00pm CET) on Monday, and aim for three points that will place them just four behind the current leaders Atlético Madrid.

The opponent

Coach José Rojo ‘Pacheta’
League position: 20th (20 points)
League results: 3W-11D-12L
Top scorer: Rafa Mir (7 goals)
Ex-Barça players: Sandro and Sergi Gómez 

LaLiga state of play

Real Madrid leapfrogged Barça after Karim Benzema came to their rescue against Elche. Dani Calvo had given the visitors a 61st minute lead before Benzema equalised 12 minutes later and then fired home the winner in the 91st minute. Los Blancos therefore currently sit second, one point ahead of Barça having played a game more. 

Leaders, Atlético Madrid, kept another clean sheet against Getafe, their 19th in a row against the side from south Madrid, however, they weren't able to score themselves and another two dropped points mean that if Barça are able to beat Huesca, the Catalans will end the weekend just four points behind the Rojiblancos.

Sevilla's 1-0 victory over Real Betis in El Gran Derbi keeps them in fourth position on 51 points with 26 games played, one less than the teams above them once Barça close out the weekend.

Did you know?

Barça have avoided defeat in their five games against Huesca in all competitions (W4 D1)

Barça have gone 16 games without losing in LaLiga (W13 D3), the best current unbeaten streak of any team in the five major leagues in Europe.

Huesca have only won one of their last 20 away games in LaLiga (D10 L9), 3-1 against Real Valladolid last January. They have conceded at least one goal in their last 10 league trips and have never done so in 11 in a row in the top-flight.

Huesca have not won any of the three games they have played on a Monday in LaLiga (D1 L2).

Barça have only lost one of their last 13 LaLiga games at the Camp Nou against newly-promoted rivals (W10 D2), with the exception in this run being a 1-2 defeat in July 2020 against Osasuna.

Barça are the only LaLiga team to have reached 600 individual sequences of 10 or more passes this season, at least 143 more than any other team (Real Madrid, 457).

Lionel Messi has been involved in five goals in two games against Huesca in LaLiga (two goals and three assists), including two goals and two assists in his only league appearance against them at the Camp Nou.

Huesca’s Pablo Maffeo has provided an assist in each of his last two LaLiga games, just one fewer than in his previous 48 games in the competition (3).

We do like Monday's

Barça have won the last five games played on a Monday in LaLiga. The last defeat came way back in January 1998, against Valencia.

Since then, Racing Santander (2-4; 1998), Celta Vigo (2-3; 2006), Sporting Gijón (3-0; 2009), Real Madrid (5-0; 2010) and Villarreal (5- 0; 2011) have been beaten.

Record breaker Messi

Messi is about to reach a new landmark: equaling Xavi Hernández as the player with the most games played in Barça's history (767). He'll reach the milestone if he plays against Huesca and will make his legend even greater.


View from the bench

"I think the team is good. We're very motivated, and on top of that we're going to play the last match of the weekend, so we already know the results of the other teams," Ronald Koeman said in his pre-match press conference.

"We know what we have to do. We have to win to continue to fight for the league. That's the first objective, to win."

"We have to be very concentrated and very prepared because the results speak for themselves. There are no easy games."

"This team has a bright future ahead of it. Seeing all the quality it has, I think that we've changed a few things that we needed to and that's evident."

The squad

On Monday morning, Ronald Koeman announced the list of 22 players for the match, with Ronald Araujo having recovered from the discomfort in his left ankle that saw him miss the last few games.

Squad as follows: Ter Stegen, Dest, R. Araujo, Sergio, Griezmann, Pjanic, Braithwaite, Messi, O. Dembélé, Riqui Puig, Neto, Lenglet, Pedri, Trincao, Jordi Alba, Matheus, F. De Jong, Umtiti, Junior, Ilaix, O. Mingueza and Arnau Tenas. Piqué, Coutinho, S. Roberto and Ansu Fati miss the match due to injury.

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