Barcelona have started out strong this season as always, winning their first two La Liga games and triumphing over Atletico Madrid in the Supercopa.
Valencia haven't been quite so bright, winning just one of two La Liga games as the team also gets ready for its Europa League schedule. Valencia missed out on the Champions League by one point to Real Sociedad a season ago, so every point counts for the club this season—even with the mighty Catalans coming to town.
Let's preview this exciting La Liga fixture.
When: Sunday, Sept. 1 at 3 p.m. ET (8 p.m. BST)
Where: Estadio de Mestalla, Valencia
Odds: Barcelona (49.6 percent), draw (21.1 percent), Valencia (29.3 percent), according to Bloomberg Sports.
In two matches a season ago, Barcelona won (1-0) and drew (1-1) with Valencia, so this won't be a walk in the park for the Catalans. Barcelona are on the heels of a tough win over Atletico Madrid in the Supercopa—after drawing both games but winning on away goals, 1-1—so the club will look to get back on track in La Liga play.
While Barca have opened with two wins in La Liga play, Valencia have taken just three points to start the season, losing to Espanyol 3-1 last weekend. New addition Helder Postiga did open up his Valencia account in that game; however, and he'll need to put forth another strong showing against Barcelona.
Also, could this be the game Neymar gets his first La Liga start? Could we finally see the exciting young Brazilian and Lionel Messi in action together right off the bat?
As Malaga proved, an aggressive, organized defensive blueprint can frustrate Barca despite being grossly overmatched in talent. And Valencia played Barca tough a season ago, so it's easy to see this game being tight.
Still, this is Barca we're talking about, with a goal differential of plus-eight after just two games. Valencia will put up a fight, but the Catalans will get the decision.
Barcelona win, 1-0