MX23RW : Tuesday, November 24 03:55:53| >> :120:22351:22351:
Oct 31, 2020 at 8pm UK at Mendizorroza, Vitoria, Basque Country
AlavesAlaves
1-1
BarcelonaBarcelona
Rioja (31')
Jota (15'), Deyverson (22'), Duarte (87')
Jota (62')
FT(HT: 1-0)
Griezmann (63')
Messi (39'), Lenglet (44'), Busquets (44')

Preview: Alaves vs. Barcelona - prediction, team news, lineups

Sports Mole previews Saturday's La Liga clash between Alaves and Barcelona, including team news and predicted lineups.

Barcelona will be looking to return to winning ways in La Liga when they travel to Estadio de Mendizorroza to face Alaves on Saturday night.

Ronald Koeman's side suffered a 3-1 defeat in El Clasico last weekend and are currently 12th in the table, while Alaves occupy 15th position with seven points to show from their seven league games this term.


Match preview

Pablo Machin in charge of Sevilla on January 6, 2019© Reuters

Alaves are operating in their fifth straight season at this level of football, but they finished 16th last term, just three points outside of the relegation zone after struggling for consistency.

Los Babazorros have already lost four times in Spain's top flight this season but two wins and one draw have brought them seven points, which is enough for 15th in the table at this stage.

Pablo Machin's side will also enter this weekend's contest in good form considering that they have won two of their last three in the league, including a 2-0 success away to Real Valladolid last weekend.

Alaves have lost each of their last seven La Liga games with Barca, though, including a 5-0 defeat in the corresponding match last season. The Catalan giants actually scored nine times during their two meetings in 2019-20 and will be the heavy favourites to pick up another three points on Saturday.

Barcelona's Lionel Messi celebrates scoring against Juventus in the Champions League on October 28, 2020© Reuters

Barca are currently sitting down in 12th position in the table, having picked up seven points from their first five matches of the season. They are already seven points off the top of the division but have two games in hand on early league leaders Real Sociedad.

Koeman's team have lost their last two in the league, going down 1-0 at Getafe on October 17 before suffering a 3-1 home defeat to Real Madrid in El Clasico last weekend.

The Catalan side were also held to a 1-1 draw by Sevilla on October 4, meaning that they have not actually been victorious in the league since a 3-0 success at Celta Vigo on October 1.

Barca have started their Champions League campaign in impressive fashion, however, thumping Ferencvaros 5-1 last week before recording a 2-0 victory away to Juventus on Wednesday night.

It is absolutely vital that Koeman's side return to winning ways in the league, though, ahead of their third European fixture of the campaign at home to Dynamo Kiev next week.

Alaves La Liga form: LDLWLW

Barcelona La Liga form: WWDLL
Barcelona form (all competitions): WDLWLW


Team News

Real Madrid's Casemiro in action with Barcelona's Philippe Coutinho in La Liga on October 24, 2020© Reuters

Alaves will again be without the services of Pere Pons due to a foot injury, while a muscular problem is expected to rule Rodrigo Ely out of the contest once again.

The home side did not pick up any fresh issues against Valladolid, though, and it would not be a surprise to see Machin keep faith with the same XI that picked up an impressive win.

Borja Sainz came off the bench to score his team's second late on, but Lucas Perez is again expected to again be joined in the final third of the field by Joselu.

As for Barca, Marc-Andre ter Stegen, Philippe Coutinho and Samuel Umtiti remain unavailable for selection, while Ronald Araujo is expected to miss out with the thigh problem that he picked up against Juve.

Gerard Pique was suspended against the Italian champions but will come back into the XI for this game, while Ousmane Dembele could also retain his spot following an impressive display against the Old Lady.

Pedri's recent form has been excellent, and the 17-year-old should earn another start here, meaning that Antoine Griezmann could drop out to allow Ansu Fati to return. Sergio Busquets, meanwhile, is also expected to replace Miralem Pjanic in the middle of the park.

Alaves possible starting lineup:
Pacheco; Navarro, Laguardia, Lejeune, Duarte; Mendez, Pina, Battaglia, Jota; Perez, Joselu

Barcelona possible starting lineup:
Neto; Roberto, Pique, Lenglet, Alba; De Jong, Busquets; Dembele, Pedri, Fati; Messi


SM words green background

We say: Alaves 0-2 Barcelona

Barca's impressive performance against Juve would certainly have boosted their confidence, and Koeman's side will be determined to return to winning ways in the league. Alaves are capable of making it an uncomfortable 90 minutes, but we fancy the Catalan giants to secure all three points in routine fashion.


Top betting tip

Our expert tipster partners at Sporita.com are predicting an away win in this match. Click here to find out what else they are predicting for this game and for more of their tried-and-tested football tips.Away Win:data

ID:420246:cQx

Who will win Saturday's La Liga clash between Alaves and Barcelona?

Alaves
Draw
Barcelona
Alaves
0.0%
Draw
0.0%
Barcelona
0.0%
0
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Barcelona forward Ousmane Dembele pictured in September 2020
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Tables
TeamPWDLFAGDPTS
1Real Sociedad107212141723
2Atletico MadridAtletico86201821620
3Villarreal105411410419
4Real Madrid95221510517
5CadizCadiz10424811-314
6Granada94231014-414
7Sevilla8413118313
8Athletic Bilbao9405119212
9Valencia103341716112
10ElcheElche833289-112
11Getafe933389-112
12Real Betis104061221-912
13Barcelona8323159611
14Osasuna932489-111
15AlavesAlaves10244912-310
16EibarEibar1024469-310
17Real Valladolid102351015-59
18Levante9144914-57
19Huesca10073816-87
20Celta Vigo10145819-117

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