Barcelona manager Luis Enrique knows it won’t be easy to beat the side in fifth place on Saturday at the Camp Nou.
Luis Enrique spoke to the press on Friday ahead of tonight’s fixture with Sevilla at Camp Nou. The former Barcelona player expects a tough game against an in-form side lying fifth in the table at this moment.
“They push high up the field and will make it difficult for us to start moves,” he commented on Sevilla.”They work hard on their strategy and get the ball out to the wings quickly. Unai Emery is making his mark at Sevilla.”
Emery has never managed a victory against Barça, but Luis Enrique feels that this point should be ignored.”No matter what the outcomes of those matches were, both at Valencia and now at Sevilla he has always made things very hard for Barça.”
Sevilla have two players currently on loan from Barcelona, both of whom have earned regular places in the starting lineup and are likely to feature against their parent side on Saturday.
“It’s important for us that Denis Suárez and Gerard Deulofeu are getting to play regular football at Sevilla. They are both doing well and that’s precisely why we sent them there.”
Jeremy Mathieu and Rafinha Alcantara were both declared fit after the final training session. The French defender picked up a soleus injury in his right foot against Celta Vigo three weeks ago while Rafinha pulled a muscle in his right leg during the international break. Andres Iniesta is the only player sidelined with injury at this moment. He came through training ahead of Saturday’s clash with Sevilla but is awaiting the all-clear from the club’s medical staff. Judging by Enrique’s comments in the press conference it seems he will return very soon. Enrique also revealed that Thomas Vermaelen is fit and available for selection for the first time since joining the club from Arsenal over the summer but wouldn’t rush him back into action.
“We are talking about a player that was injured for a whole season and now he’s available for the coach. I’ll decide when he’ll play, I see him doing very well.”
The manager was asked about the defence which has looked shaky in the last three matches.”There will always be ups and downs over the course of a season” he replied.”But you must remember that we still have the best defensive record in the league, and that’s something that needs stressing.”
Probable Line-up (4-3-3): Claudio Bravo(Gk); Dani Alves, Javier Mascherano, Jérémy Mathieu, Jordi Alba; Xavi Hernandez, Sergio Busquets, Ivan Rakitic; Neymar, Lionel Messi, Luis Suarez