Sergio Busquets will not play against Rayo Vallecano - giving Alex Song a timely start for Barcelona.
Last night it was heavily reported across Spanish media that former Arsenal midfielder Alex Song was ready to demand a January exit from the Nou Camp after once again being confined to the bench this season.
Signed under a Robin Van Persie shaped cloud the Cameroonian was always going to be on his way as soon as the interest from Barca became apparent - but it turned out to be a difficult season for him, as he was usually on the bench or playing poorly in the starting line-up.
As soon as the news was announced he was linked with several teams for a winter move. First of all, the inevitable link with his former team Arsenal. Then there was the link with Manchester United, which would see him reunite with Robin Van Persie, with whom he had an excellent campaign last term. AC Milan have also been linked, while inevitable moves to France have been tentatively mooted.
But how is this for a coincidence. The very moment that Song looks ready to leave, all of a sudden Tata Martino decides to rest Sergio Busquets.
Busquets is of course the number one deep lying midfielder at the club, but ahead of the game with Rayo Vallecano Barcelona have told the combative midfielder to stay at home.
This should mean a start for Song, his first start for the club this season.
With Busquets out, it will likely be Song or Sergi Roberto who take his place in the starting line-up.
If Song gets the nod it is surely a tactic to keep the Cameroonian happy, as while he is not a regular first team starter, he is a very important member of the squad in regards to cover - this is the perfect time to remind him of his importance to the squad.
So Barcelona could start Song and give him something to think about ahead of an apparent desire to exit in the winter.
image: © jeroen_bennink