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Dani Alves featured in the cup game in 2012/13 / PHOTO: MIGUEL RUIZ - FCB

[[DES_1]]FC Barcelona are about to face each other in their first league encounter for 42 years. The Andalusians finally won promotion back to the top flight last season, but it’s nothing quite as long as that since the two teams last met. They were drawn together in the round of 16 of the Spanish Cup in 2012/13, when Barça won 2-0 in the first leg at the Nuevo Arcángel and finished off the job with a comfortable 5-0 win at home.

Overhauled squad

There have been big changes at Córdoba since then. Manager Rafa Berges has departed along with almost all of those players, with only goalkeeper Mikel Saizar and midfielders López Silva, López Garai, Caballero and Abel Gómez surviving. All five of them featured in the games two years ago, and all but Saizar have been regular starters in the first eleven this season.

There have been wholesale changes to the coaching and playing staff at the club. Cordoba were promoted under former FC Barcelona hero Albert Ferrer, and are now being managed by Miroslav Djukic. López Garai and Caballero are still very much involved in the central playmaking, although they have been joined in that task by Borja García and Fede Cartabia. The latter has played every game of the campaign so far and has scored three goals.

New strike-force

Up front, the players are all new faces, with Nabil Ghilas leading the attack after arriving on loan from Porto. The Algerian forward has scored four goals so far this term, including those that got Córdoba their first win of the season away to Athletic Bilbao at the new San Mamés.

 

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Return of Eduard Campabadal

The Catalan defender could play against FC Barcelona for the first time. The full back was in the Barça youth team from 2009 and 2012 and is now looking forward to his first ever appearance in the Camp Nou. Campabadal has played six games this season, including all of Córdoba’s last three fixtures.

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