NEWS
Sunday December 17 2017
Preview: Barca-Depor

Andres Iniesta and Javier Mascherano return for Barcelona against Deportivo La Coruna on Sunday, but Sergio Busquets is walking a Clasico tightrope.

Iniesta had missed Barca’s last two games with a calf strain, but he is back to face Depor alongside Mascherano, who spent the past month nursing a hamstring injury.

However, Barca will be hoping Busquets does not get booked on Sunday, given he is one yellow card away from a ban, which would rule him out of their trip to Real Madrid next weekend.

Depor, meanwhile, look to have turned a corner after two wins in their last three games, although they remain only one place and just three points clear of the relegation zone.

“Barcelona are one of the best teams in the world, if not the best, with great players,” Coach Cristobal Parralo said at a Press conference.

“Therefore, we have to play collectively, with a lot of help from everyone, and be very focused throughout.

“They’re having a fantastic season, and they’re also a very solid team. Lionel Messi has defined an era. He’s the most decisive player I’ve ever seen.

“We have to help each other a lot so they don’t get the ball to him too often. We need to run a lot, but run well.”

You’d have to go back to October 2003 for the last time the Galicians won at Camp Nou, but they famously stayed up with a 2-2 draw on the final day of the 2014-15 campaign and dented the Blaugrana’s title hopes with a 2-1 win on home soil last season.

Barcelona (probable): Ter Stegen; Sergi Roberto, Pique, Vermaelen, Alba; Rakitic, Busquets, Iniesta; Messi; Suarez, Alcacer

Injuries/suspensions: Dembele, Deulofeu, Rafinha, Umtiti (I)

Deportivo La Coruna (probable): Ruben; Juanfran, Schar, Sidnei, Fernando; Guilherme, Borges; Gil, Emre, Adrian; Lucas

Injuries/suspensions: Pantilimon, Valentin, Cartabia, Andone (I)

Referee: Mateu Lahoz

Form guide: Barca – 1st (W D D W W) Depor – 17th (W L D L L)

Previous meeting: Depor 2-1 Barca

Venue: Camp Nou

Kick-off time: 19:45 GMT/20:45 CET (LIVE on Football Espana)

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