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Fermin, Fort start in a 4-3-3: How Barcelona could line up against Mallorca

Barcelona will be eager to return to winning ways and put some pressure on Real Madrid and Girona when they take on RCD Mallorca in La Liga tonight.

The Blaugrana had an excellent chance to close down the gap to the top last week after Real Madrid and Girona dropped points. But they failed to capitalise, being held to a goalless draw by Athletic Club at San Mames.

However, with the top two sides scheduled to play later in the weekend, Barça have an opportunity to put them under pressure with a victory against Javier Aguirre’s men tonight at Estadi Olimpic Lluis Companys.

But, things might not be as straightforward as they seem for Barcelona have been hit with injuries to key men Pedri and Frenkie de Jong while they will also have an eye on next week’s crucial UEFA Champions League encounter against Napoli.

As such, rotations could be on the cards for Barça, who will go into the game without Pedri, De Jong, Gavi, Alejandro Balde, and Ferran Torres (all injured). Moreover, Ronald Araujo will be unavailable through suspension.

Here’s how Xavi Hernandez, who himself is serving a one-match ban, will set his team up against Mallorca tonight.


Marc-Andre ter Stegen is a certain starter in goal for Barcelona and it will be a special occasion for the German international is it will be his 400th appearance for the Catalan club.

With Ronald Araujo injured, youngster Pau Cubarsi is expected to come into the starting lineup, partnering with Inigo Martinez at the heart of the defence. Joao Cancelo ought to continue at left-back with Alejandro Balde out and Marcos Alonso just back from injury.

There is likely to be a change at right-back, with Hector Fort expected to replace Jules Kounde, who has featured in every minute of every game Barça have played in 2024. As such, the Frenchman could use a breather before the big game against Napoli.

Hector Fort to replace Jules Kounde. (Photo by David Ramos/Getty Images)

With no Pedri, Gavi, and Frenkie de Jong, Xavi does not have much room to rotate in midfield. Even then, the manager is expected to give Andreas Christensen, the club’s new bet in the No. 6 position, a break tonight and hand Oriol Romeu a rare start at the base of the midfield.

Ilkay Gundogan will have to continue to shoulder the responsibility in the absence of other key midfielders. And he will be supported by young midfielder Fermin Lopez, who scored his first official goal for Barcelona against Mallorca earlier this season.

Lamine Yamal is also likely to be shielded keeping in mind his workload and the upcoming game against Napoli. As such, Raphinha ought to start on the right flank for Barça while Joao Felix is in line to return on the left wing.

There is simply no looking past Robert Lewandowski up top in attack for the hosts even though Vitor Roque remains an option.


Lamine Yamal will come onto the pitch at some point, especially if things are not going Barcelona’s way against Mallorca. Andreas Christensen could be called upon with there being some question marks over Oriol Romeu’s fitness to play a full game.

There has been a lot of questions about Vitor Roque’s lack of minutes in recent matches, but Xavi could call upon the Brazilian teenager as well as fellow forward Marc Guiu depending on the game-situation.

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