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Barcelona vs. Real Sociedad: Odds, Preview, Live Stream and TV Info

Tom Sunderland@@TomSunderland_Featured ColumnistApril 19, 2019

SAN SEBASTIAN, SPAIN - SEPTEMBER 15: Theo Hernandez of Real Sociedad speaks with Leo Messi of Barcelona during the La Liga match between Real Sociedad and FC Barcelona at Estadio Anoeta on September 15, 2018 in San Sebastian, Spain. (Photo by TF-Images/Getty Images)
TF-Images/Getty Images

Barcelona can take another step towards securing La Liga's crown if they beat Real Sociedad at the Camp Nou on Saturday, with the hosts searching for their seventh successive victory over La Real.

Sociedad are 10th in La Liga and travel to Catalonia having lost in each of their previous 22 trips to the Camp Nou, per Soccerway, where their chances look low after winning just one of their last eight games.

The Blaugrana remain on course for a European and domestic treble this season after beating Manchester United 3-0 on Tuesday to advance to the UEFA Champions League semi-finals.

Sociedad aren't out of the hunt for European qualification themselves and are fighting to close the gap on seventh-place Athletic Bilbao, though Barca will be reluctant to give up precious points at home.

       

Date: Saturday, April 20

Time: 7:45 p.m. p.m. BST/2:45 p.m. ET

Venue: Camp Nou, Barcelona, Spain

Live Stream: ITV Hub (UK), Eleven SportsfuboTV (U.S.), beIN Sports Connect (U.S.)

TV Info: ITV 4 (UK), beIN Sports 3 (U.S.)

       

Odds

Barcelona: 2-9

Draw: 5-1

Real Sociedad: 12-1

Via Oddschecker.com.

         

Preview

A 4-0 aggregate triumph over United should provide confidence ahead of Barca's return to league action at the Camp Nou, where they've won their last five home matches in succession.

Sportswriter Andy West highlighted the Blaugrana have added motivation to beat Sociedad in Week 33 as they could guarantee a finish above their most bitter rivals with weeks left in the campaign:

Andy West @andywest01

In fact it only needs Madrid and Athletic to draw, considering the head to head advantage for Barça.

Ernesto Valverde's side can temporarily move 16 points ahead of third-place Real Madrid—who don't host Athletic Bilbao until Sunday afternoon—if they win on Saturday. The Catalans were 2-1 victors at the Anoeta in September, though La Liga's leaders were forced to come back from a goal down in that visit.

It's worth noting Valverde and Co. were on the verge of a slight rough patch in that period, but a 3-0 midweek hammering of United suggests they're in a different gear right now, via BT Sport (UK only):

Barca are unbeaten in their last 19 competitive fixtures and have improved their defence in particular of late, keeping four consecutive clean sheets since drawing 4-4 with Villarreal at the beginning of April.

It works in Barcelona's favour that Sociedad manager Imanol Alguacil hasn't tasted victory away from home since January 6; it doesn't help their case, however, that result was a 2-0 giant-killing away at Real.

Sociedad drew 1-1 at home to Eibar following a fast start in their last outing and will hope to take a similar initiative on Saturday, via Eleven Sports (UK only):

Eleven Sports @ElevenSports_UK

| GOAL! | Well, that was pretty quick... 🤯 Juanmi Jimenez gives Real Sociedad the lead after just 11 seconds! ⏱⚡️ https://t.co/WHtKflWg5Z

Lionel Messi scored twice in four minutes to play a leading hand in knocking out the Red Devils, and Valverde again gushed over the Argentinian's quality, via Omnisport:

Omnisport @OmnisportNews

"We're lucky to have him." Ernesto Valverde was delighted with Lionel Messi after #FCBarcelona's win over #MUFC... https://t.co/Yr5EiE0uoC

That serves as yet another bad omen for Sociedad, who have a number of concerns ahead of Saturday. Star midfielder Asier Illarramendi and defender Hector Moreno could miss out, while winger Adnan Januzaj is a doubt and David Zurutuza is yet to return from injury.

Barcelona have no new injury worries to contend with, and they face a task in keeping concentration in the latest leg of their slalom toward La Liga's crown.

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