FC Barcelona open their La Liga campaign in a tough tie away against Atheltic Club Bilbao and the club have been boosted with the news that Jordi Alba is fit to face the side that just beat them in the Spanish Super Cup.
FC Barcelona were demolished 4-0 by Athletic Bilbao earlier last week in the Spanish Super Cup and St. Mames. The defending champions will be hoping for a much better outcome this time around as they open their La Liga campaign.
Jordi Alba declared fit; Neymar to miss the tie
One of the missing players in the game was left-back Jordi Alba as FC Barcelona defence simply failed to cope with Athletics’s attack.
Dani Alves, who is expected to start on the right hand side of the defence, in particular, struggled in the game.
Alba been given the all clear after picking up an injury in the Joan Gamper Trophy game 17 days ago, subsequently forcing him to miss both the European and Spanish Super Cups.
FC Barcelona can now heave a sigh of relief with Adriano, the back up left-back, injured along with new signing Douglas. However, the club will have a decision to make as to who would play alongside Messi and Suarez in the front three with Pedro having departed for Chelsea FC, Turan ineligible and Neymar, despite returning to training following recovery from mumps, not being fit enough to be included in the squad.
Marc Bartra may play alongside Javier Mascherano with Gerard Pique and Jeremy Mathieu ruled out due to suspension.
Barca B duo of Juan CA?mara and Gerard Gumbau make the squad
The 19 man squad that Barcelona are taking to Bilbao also consist of two Barcelona B players who are yet to make their debut. At least one of them will make the bench.
Juan CA?mara and Gerard Gumbau, both trained with the first team this week. They will wear the shirt number 27 and 28 respectively.
The full squad list for the trip to Bilbao is:
. Ter Stegen, Bravo, Alves, Bartra, Mascherano, Vermaelen, Jordi Alba, Sergio, Rakitic, Iniesta, Rafinha, Sergi Roberto, Gumbau, CA?mara, Munir, Sandro, SuA?rez, Messi.