Mallorca – Barcelona
The champion Barcelona kicks off again its season in Spanish La Liga. On Saturday the Catalan giants will travel to face Mallorca in a game from the 28th round of the league. For both teams that’s going to be a first game in a three months time. It’d be curious to see these sides’ current fitness levels.
For Barca there’s no room for mistakes as the second Real Madrid is just two points behind. There are 11 games until the end of the season, so both Barcelona and Real Madrid need to be as effective as possible. Every point they lose it could be fatal for their title ambitions.
Barcelona’s Clement Lenglet is missing this trip to Mallorca. The French defender is suspended, so he can’t play. Most likely his countryman Samuel Umtiti will replace him as a partner to Gerard Pique in defense. Meanwhile the talented winger Ousmane Dembele is also recovering from his latest injury.
It’d be interesting to see what the manager Quique Setien will decide about Luis Suarez’ involvement. The Uruguayan star is now recovered from his injury, but Setien admitted that he can’t play the whole 90 minutes. Maybe he’s going to start from the bench on Saturday.
Mallorca need the points, too. Right now they are in the relegation zone, so it’s a dangerous situation for them. If they want to survive, Mallorca must find a way to win as much points as possible. They are currently just one point behind the 17th Celta.
The Japanese international Takefusa Kubo is the big inspiration in Mallorca’s team. Kubo is owned by Barcelona’s arch-rivals Real Madrid, so you can be sure he will try to help Madrid for the title.
Barcelona are the favourites against Mallorca on Saturday. There will be no fans at the Iberostar Estadi, so the home ground factor won’t be so decisive.