After the humbling defeat at the hands of Hércules CF the Blaugrana fortunately have no time to dwell in sorrow. On Tuesday the reigning La Liga Champions will entertain Greek side Panathinaikos FC in their opening fixture of the UEFA Champions League.
Pananthinaikos FC can boast such illustrious names as Jean-Alain Boumsong, Sidney Govou, Djibril Cissé, Gilberto Silva and ex-Barca player Luis García. Each of these players can boast a wealth of experience in Europe’s premier club competition and should prove a formidable opponent.
The Blaugrana underestimated their fellow La Liga competitors having rested Dani Alves, Pedro and more crucially Xavi in the encounter against Hercules CF. Barca’s midfield experiment of Mascherano, Keita and Iniesta failed to impose themselves and thus the defeat was more than justified.
Against the Greek don’t expect Pep Guardiola to repeat his mistake and field a full-strength side.
Defence: Alves, Pique, Puyol, Abidal
Midfield: Busquets, Xavi, Iniesta
Forwards: Pedro, Villa, Messi
Even though it will not be an easy encounter expect the Blaugrana to come out victoriously and take the whole 3 points. Not to belittle the accomplishments of Panathinaikos FC but a full-strength side should prove too much for the Greek to handle.
3-0 with Lionel Messi scoring a brace and David Villa adding a further one.