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Osasuna vs Barcelona Preview

January 11, 2012 By Isaac Asante
A 4-0 first leg advantage over Osasuna should be enough to give Barcelona all the confidence in the world in their next Copa del Rey match; but work still has to be done.
In his pre-match press conference, Barca coach Pep Guardiola warned: “There are 90 minutes left and Osasuna have their virtues, which we already know about. It's our duty to think we still have work to do.”

The official club website also quoted him saying: “All grounds are complicated, and this one especially, for its size and the way they play. We know it will be cold, and we'll see how the pitch is.”

Barcelona will be without Iniesta, Maxwell and Alves. B team players Montoya, Cuenca and Sergi Roberto trained with 18 other first team players, and all three of them have been included in the squad.

While Keita has joined his national team Mali for the Africa Cup of Nations, David Villa is still under treatment. There is however good news for Ibrahim Afellay, who has now returned to the club from the Netherlands after completing a part of his recovery process.

For Osasuna, there will be several gaps since Roversio, Ruben, Kike Sola, Jukka Raitala and Ion Echaide are all unavailable. Luckily for them though, Guardiola is likely to rest most of his top players so as to field in a young side.

That surely doesn’t mean that the visitors will be vulnerable to any shock; nonetheless, it could ease Osasuna’s troubles. With already 12 goals conceded against Barcelona this season though in only two matches so far, Los Rojillos’ defensive line will really have to be alert and efficient this time.

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