Lionel Messi makes his 500th Barcelona appearance tonight as La Blaugrana host Real Betis without Jordi Alba, Gerard Pique and Andres Iniesta in their line-up.
Despite the experienced trio being named in Barca’s matchday squad, Jeremy Mathieu is preferred to Alba at left-back, Thomas Vermaelen to Pique at centre-back and Sergi Roberto to Iniesta in central midfield.
Betis, meanwhile, make just the one change from their derby stalemate with Sevilla a fortnight ago as Ricky van Wolfswinkel replaces Joaquin on the left wing.
Victories for Real Madrid and Atletico Madrid mean only a win will do for the Catalans, who were recently crowned world champions, if they are to enter the New Year top of La Liga.
Barcelona: Bravo; Alves, Mascherano, Vermaelen, Mathieu; Busquets, Rakitic, Sergi; Messi, Suarez, Neymar
Subs: Ter Stegen, Pique, Iniesta, Bartra, Munir, Alba, Adriano
Real Betis: Adan; Molinero, Bruno, Westermann, Vargas; N'Diaye, Petros; Cejudo, Ceballos, Van Wolfswinkel; Castro
Subs: Gimenez, Pezzella, Digard, Portillo, Piccini, Van der Vaart, Joaquin
Referee: Bikandi Garrido