Jose Mourinho is believed likely to turn to the same defensive line that conceded three times against Real Sociedad when hosting Barcelona tonight.
The Portuguese is without Sergio Ramos and Fabio Coentrao for the first leg of the club’s Copa del Rey semi-final with Barca through suspension, whilst Pepe and Iker Casillas are missing through injury and Marcelo is yet to reach full match fitness.
Subsequently, it is seen that the Coach will field a back-line of Michael Essien, Raphael Varane, Ricardo Carvalho and Alvaro Arbeloa and will opt for Antonio Adan to start over new signing Diego Lopez between the sticks.
This defensive five last started a game against Real Sociedad in the League, where Adan was dismissed inside the opening minutes and the team went on to concede three times in an eventual 4-3 win.
Meanwhile, it is speculated that despite missing Angel Di Maria through suspension, Mourinho will again not call up Ricky Kaka, who has not been involved with the first team for three consecutive games, since January 12.