Barcelona welcome La Liga rivals Levante to the Nou Camp on Thursday night for the second leg of their Copa del Rey round of 16 clash.
The Catalan giants' tournament life was cast into doubt last week after losing the first leg 2-1 on the road and Ernesto Valverde's side will have it all to do in their quest to notch a fifth straight Copa del Rey title.
Check out 90min's preview of Thursday's tie below.
Where to Watch
|When Is Kick Off?||Thursday 17th January|
|What Time Is Kick Off?||20:30 GMT|
|Where Is it Played?||Camp Nou|
|TV Channel/Live Stream?||beIN SPORTS CONNECT|
|Referee?||Jose Sanchez Martinez|
After ringing in the changes for the first leg last week, Valverde could be forced to field a much stronger starting XI on Thursday night in an attempt to secure safe passage to the quarter-finals. However, the Spaniard will remain without long term absentees Thomas Vermaelen, Samuel Umtiti, Sergi Samper, and Rafinha.
The visitors have just one key injury as striker Armando Sadiku remains sidelined, having not played a minute of first team football this term.
|Barcelona||Cillessen; Semedo, Pique, Lenglet, Gonzalez; Arthur, Rakitic, Vidal; Coutinho, Suarez, Messi.|
|Levante||Fernandez; Cabaco, Postigo, Chema; Coke, Prcic, Campana, Simon, Rochina; Boateng, Mayoral.|
Head to Head record
Last week's win over Barcelona was Levante's first ever victory over the Blaugrana in the Copa del Rey. What made that result all the more surprising was last month Barcelona made the trip to Levante for a La Liga tie and returned home with all three points having mauled the hosts 5-0, thanks to a Lionel Messi hat-trick.
Despite last week's disappointing result, Barcelona have been in sparkling form of late, with that loss being their first in ten games.
Their six-game winning streak in La Liga has seen Barca extend their lead at the top of the table to five points, but Thursday's focus will turn exclusively to progression in the Copa del Rey.
Levante have had contrasting fortunes in the league this term and have won just once in their last nine La Liga clashes.
Defeat to Atletico Madrid leaves them in 12th place in Spain's top tier, but manager Paco Lopez will hope to put league form to one side as his men seek to cling on to their narrow one goal advantage over Barcelona on Thursday night.
Here's how each side performed in their last five fixtures:
|Barcelona 3-0 Eibar (13/1)||Atletico Madrid 1-0 Levante (13/1)|
|Levante 2-1 Barcelona (10/1)||Levante 2-1 Barcelona (10/1)|
|Getafe 1-2 Barcelona (06/1)
||Levante 2-2 Girona (04/1)|
|Barcelona 2-0 Celta Vigo (22/12)||Rayo Vallecano 2-1 Levante (23/12)|
|Levante 0-5 Barcelona (16/12)||Levante 0-5 Barcelona (16/12)|
With their tournament status in serious jeopardy, expect Valverde to usher his first team stars back into the starting lineup on Thursday, giving Levante very little hope as they attempt to retain their one goal advantage.
Only bottom-placed Huesca have conceded more goals in La Liga than Levante this term and should Barcelona field anything even resembling a full strength side, there will be plenty of opportunities to flip this tie on its head.
Prediction: Barcelona 4-0 Levante