How to watch Friday's match. Argentinian star Lionel Messi has been on point for Barca since the squad returned from coronavirus hiatus, scoring in both matches back on the pitch. Meanwhile, Uruguayan striker Luis Suarez made his long-awaited return earlier this week after undergoing knee surgery. Barcelona currently sits atop the Spanish Primera Division standings with a record of 64 points.
It's a rematch of the Copa del Rey final from May in which Barca lost to Los Che
Barcelona and Valencia meet on Saturday in La Liga in a big game for both clubs. Barca is in first in the league and looking to stay there while weathering the storm as Luis Suarez is set to miss four months with a leg injury, while Valencia was humbled at Mallorca last time out but is still well within reach in the battle for the top four. The team won its debut under the new coach last weekend by beating Granada at the Camp Nou as Lionel Messi scored a fantastic goal, combining with Antoine Griezmann and Arturo Vidal. It's going to take a while for the team to fully reflect the changes the coach wants in the side, but the confidence is there with the narrow victory with the defense performing well.
Following its disappointing Spanish Super Cup performance against rivals Real Madrid, Barcelona returns to league play, where it currently has an early five-point lead over Los Blancos. To keep this lead, it will need an impressive performance against a talented Valencia squad that has always been a top competitor for Barcelona. The key for Barcelona is its defense, and its centre-backs in particular.
Barcelona's year-old forward Ansu Fati continued his explosive start to life in the first team by scoring and providing an assist as the LaLiga champions thrashed Valencia on Saturday. Fati, who became Barca's youngest ever goalscorer two weeks ago by netting at Osasuna, struck his first goal at the Camp Nou to give Barca the lead with less than two minutes on the clock by smashing a pass from Frenkie De Jong into the net. The teenager then returned the favour by dashing into the area from the left wing and teeing up Dutchman De Jong to score his first goal for the club in the seventh minute. Valencia, playing their first game since sacking coach Marcelino and replacing him with Albert Celades, pulled a goal back later in the half through Kevin Gameiro but Barca came flying back at them after the interval. Gerard Pique bundled the ball into the net in the 51st minute after Antoine Griezmann had hit the post while Luis Suarez netted twice after coming off the bench. Can't see the blog?