The 61-year-old has been confirmed as Ernesto Valverde’s replacement at the beginning of the week and will be desperate to begin with a victory over a team that sit 10th at La Liga after 19 matches of the campaign.
As it turned out, the 3-2 loss to Atletico Madrid in the Spanish Super Cup semi-final last Thursday was Valverde’s final game in charge, a game that leading online casino casino-bonus.com expected Barcelona to win.
The club’s legendary midfielder Xavi recently revealed he turned down the opportunity to take the managerial position because he believed that it was”too soon”. Setien has profited to be given the honour of leading the side, and it’ll be fascinating to see how the prior Real Betis boss performs at Camp Nou.
It isn’t often that a new manager takes over a team that sits on top of the table, but Barca are now at the summit on goal difference from Real Madrid. Having said that, Los Blancos will have the opportunity to claim the first place on Saturday afternoon when they welcome Sevilla to the Bernabeu.
Setien’s first two games in charge will probably be against Granada on Sunday night and off to Ibiza from the Copa del Rey on Wednesday before January finishes with a tricky game off to Valencia.
The Champions League will even restart next month, and the Catalan giants will travel to Napoli for the first leg of the last-16 event on February 25 prior to the inverse match at Camp Nou on March 18.
Granada is the group tasked with making it an unhappy beginning for Barca’s new boss, and the people are capable of making it an uncomfortable 90 minutes to the Spanish champions.
Promoted back to La Liga courtesy of finishing second in the Segunda Division last season, Diego Martinez’s side have enjoyed a good campaign up to now, picking up 27 points from their 19 games to sit 10th. An analysis of new casino sites released in 2020 showed Granada were tipped for relegation but El Grana, who beat Mallorca 1-0 in their final league fixture on January 5, will want to consolidate in the top flight, but they haven’t finished higher than 15th in La Liga because 1973-74 and therefore their form up until this stage has to be considered a success.
Martinez’s side also ran out 2-0 winners over Barca from the opposite match earlier this year, while they just suffered a 1-0 defeat when they continue travelled to Camp Nou in the league in October 2016.
The fact that their best scorer in the league this year is Antonio Puertas with four is a sign of the troubles, but they’ve just surrendered 25 times in their 19 games that are far from a catastrophic record.
Barcelona La Liga form: WWDDWD
Barcelona form (all competitions): WDDWDL
Granada La Liga form: DLWLLW
Granada form (all competitions): WLWLWW
Barca will be without Luis Suarez after knee surgery, while Ousmane Dembele remains out with a long-term thigh problem, meaning Setien is short in the final third of the field.
Frenkie de Jong will also miss out through suspension following his red card at the 2-2 draw with Espanyol in Barca’s final league game, but Arthur could shake off a groin problem to attribute.
Marc-Andre ter Stegen’s knee issue has also depended, and the German has been tipped to return between the sticks for Sunday night’s clash at Camp Nou.
In terms of Granada, Angel Montoro will miss out through suspension, while Neyder Lozano, Fede Vico, and Quini Stay unavailable for selection because of injury problems.
The absentees could indicate a change of formation for the visitors, although Puertas and Darwin Machis are expected to combine experienced forward Roberto Soldado in the final last third of the field.
Barcelona possible starting lineup:
Ter Stegen; Roberto, Pique, Lenglet, Alba; Busquets, Rakitic, Vidal; Fati, Griezmann, Messi
Granada possible starting lineup:
Silva; Sanchez, Duarte, Martinez; Diaz, Herrera, Gonalons, Neva; Puertas, Soldado, Machis