?Coming off the back of a 2-0 win against Villarreal at the Estadio de la Ceramica, Barcelona will be keen to continue their fine form that has seen them go undefeated in La Liga, dropping points only thrice as the halfway point of the season draws near.

In contrast to the good form of the Blaugrana, Deportivo are currently struggling to sty afloat in the league this season, sitting in 17th, only three points clear of the relegation zone. 

However, after beating Leganes last week, the Branquiazuis will be hoping they can kick on and take something away from their encounter with the league leaders at the Camp Nou on Sunday.

Classic Encounter


Deportivo haven’t had a great deal of luck against Barcelona over the course of the past two decades however, this was far from the case in the 2002/03 when the Galician outfit travelled east. 

The match started out well for the hosts, with Javier Saviola opening the scoring in the opening two minutes, and despite Deportivo puling one back through Lionel Scaloni after the first quarter of an hour, Thiago Motta restored Barcelona’s lead eight minutes later.

Going into the break Radomir Antic’s took the favourable position against a strong Deportivo side, leading 2-1 at the halfway point. Though Barcelona’s joy would be short lived as the visitors came out fighting in the second half.

A quick-fire double from Roy Makaay, La Liga’s top scorer for the 2002/03 campaign, set the precedent for the rest of the match as a further goal from Sergio Gonzalez Soriano saw the visitors come from behind to claim a famous 4-2 victory over Barcelona on their own patch.

Key Battle

Luis Suarez vs Fabian Schar

Villarreal v Barcelona - La Liga

After his man of the match performance in Barcelona’s last game against Villarreal, it will take something special to keep Luis Suarez quiet. When the Uruguayan striker is in the mood he can outwit any defender on the planet with his trickery and close control. 

While the 30-year-old has been uncharacteristically quiet so far this season, notching only seven goals so far in the 2017/18 campaign, the match against a struggling Deportivo could prove to be an excellent opportunity to kick on and return to form.

On the receiving end of Suarez’s attacking exploits will be Swiss defender Fabian Schar. Formerly of Hoffenheim, Schar joined Deportivo in the summer and has been a standout performer for the Galician outfit so far this season, with the 25-year-old even being linked with a January move to Barcelona,.

Although Schar has a lot to offer going forward for a defender, the onus will be on his defensive ability when tested by arguable the best striker in the world in Luis Suarez. The Swiss international will look to dominate Barcelona’s attack with his hard tackling and aerial superiority and in turn, hopefully shut out the Uruguayan.

Team News


Barcelona will be without French defender Samuel Umtiti once again as the 24-year-old looks to recover from an injury picked up in Barcelona’s 2-0 win over Sporting CP in the Champions League last week. 

Ousmane Dembele is slowly nearing a return after rupturing his thigh muscle in September, however the starlet will not be available for the encounter against Deportivo. Brazilian midfielder Rafinha also remains sidelined with a long-term injury picked up in April.

Deportivo have accumulated an unfortunate amount of injuries over the past month, with full backs Luisinho and Gerard Valentin ruled out, as well as right wing duo Bruno Gama and Federico Cartabia set to miss the trip to the Nou Camp.

Potential Barcelona lineup: Ter Stegen, Semedo, Pique, Mascherano, Jordi Alba, Busquets, Iniesta, Rakitic, Paulinho, Messi, Suarez

Potential Deportivo de La Coruna lineup: Ruben, Juanfran, Schar, Sidnei, Navarro, Guilherme, Borges, Gil, Colak, Adrian Lopez,  Perez


FC Barcelona v Sporting CP - UEFA Champions League

With Barcelona flying and Deportivo struggling it’s hard to see this turning into anything but a convincing victory for Barca. It has been eight months since any team kept a clean sheet against the Blaugrana, and Deportivo’s defensive record has been far from exemplary this season.

The last time Depotivo played Barca in the league they were able to pick up a shock 2-1 victory at home however, Barcelona have improved a lot since the 2016/17 season, unlike the Branquiazuis who continue to struggle in the league.

Prediction: Barcelona 5-0 Deportivo de La Coruña

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