Barcelona vs Levante: If Ernesto Valverde’s side are to successfully defend their Copa del Rey crown, they will have to come from behind at Camp Nou
Barcelona return to Camp Nou for the second leg of their Copa del Rey last-16 tie with Levante, facing a 2-1 deficit.
Event: Spain – Copa del Rey
Team: Barcelona vs Levante
Date: Friday 18 January, 2019
Game Time: 02:30 PM
Goals from Erick Cabaco and Borja Mayoral gave the Valencia side a flying start in this two-legged affair, though a late penalty from Philippe Coutinho allowed Barca to keep in touch.
However, the Catalans will have to produce a much-improved display at home if they are to move into the quarter-finals of a competition they have won a record 30 times in the past.
Barcelona have a string of familiar injury concerns heading into this encounter, with Samuel Umtiti leading the list. Thomas Vermaelen, Rafinha and Sergi Samper are also absent.
Despite the precarious position of the tie, rotation will take place, yet it remains to be seen if Ernesto Valverde keeps faith with either centre-back Miranda or Chumi, both of whom were replaced in the first leg.
January signing Jeison Murillo is liable to start, while there will be a temptation to select at least one of Lionel Messi and Luis Suarez in attack.
Possible Barcelona starting XI: Cillessen; Semedo, Murillo, Lenglet, Alba; Rakitic, Alena, Coutinho; Malcom, Suarez, Dembele.
Barcelona turned in a sub-par performance last week as they slipped to a 2-1 first-leg loss against Levante in Valencia but will be hopeful of turning that deficit around.
Ernesto Valverde rotated his side heavily for that first encounter and after some failed experiments in that match – most notably in defence – he will be confident that he and his players have learned from the experience.
first-leg defeat on the 30-time tournament winners, as the BBC reported. Barcelona vs Levante football game news.