Barcelona predicted XI versus Manchester City

Camp Nou

Barcelona may have the Clásico in mind next weekend, but will take no chances against Manchester City in the Champions League, fielding their strongest XI.

It's a pivotal week in the season for Barcelona on two fronts, as they prepare to take on Manchester City in the second leg of their Champions League tie, followed by the game that attracts most viewers worldwide; the Clásico against Real Madrid, with the title race in La Liga hotting up.

Barcelona boss Luis Enrique might be forgiven for having one eye one the Clásico when he ponders which players to choose from, ahead of Wednesday's encounter with Manchester City at the Camp Nou, but he won't be taking any risks whatsoever against Manuel Pellegrini's side, knowing that despite their recent disappointments in the Premier League, they're more than capable of causing an upset.

Barcelona XI vs Eibar in La Liga

Bravo; Montoya, Piqué, Bartra, Adriano; Rafinha, Sergi Roberto, Rakitic; Messi, Luis Suárez, Neymar.

Enrique made a number of rotations for the 2-0 victory away at Eibar in La Liga on Saturday, offering opportunities in defence to Montoya, Bartra and Adriano, whilst Rafinha and Sergi Roberto were both given outings. It was a tricky game for Barcelona at the compact Ipurua home of Eibar, but a potential banana skin they managed to negotiate well enough and without straining themselves too much.

Once the game was comfortably under control in the second half, conscious of Wednesday's Champions League clash, he sent on Pedro for Neymar and Xavi for Rakitic.

Predicted Barcelona XI vs Manchester City

The side that won 2-1 away at the Etihad stadium a fortnight ago, is unlikely to change much. Indeed, the only player from that 11 who is currently unavailable, is midfield pivot Sergio Busquets. This means Enrique will shuffle his options a little and is likely to utilise Mathieu in central defence instead of Mascherano, who will occupy the central midfield pivot position.

Ter Stegen; Dani Alves, Piqué, Mathieu, Jordi Alba; Rakitic, Mascherano, Iniesta; Messi, Luis Suárez, Neymar.

Options on the bench shouldn't change much either, with the seven substitutes likely to be Bravo, Adriano, Xavi, Rafinha, Sergi Roberto, Pedro, plus the addition of Bartra, who is capable of covering at right-back, centre-back and if needed, as the central midfield pivot at a push.

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