Xavi could rest two key Barcelona players against Granada

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Photo by Eric Alonso/Getty Images

A few days ago, Xavi announced that he would be rotating at least two FC Barcelona players in every match coming ahead. The Barcelona gaffer has kept his word about these rotations in the ensuing matches and is likely to keep to this trend in the upcoming game against Granada as well.

Big clubs like Barcelona are facing a highly congested schedule currently, playing two matches almost every week for the last few months.

The international matches coming in between these club matches are further sources of fatigue for players who are called up for their national sides, and regularly resting players, irrespective of their importance for the team, is an important part of a manager’s job.

Xavi to rest Araujo against Granada

According to Mundo Deportivo, there are two main candidates who are likely to be rested by Xavi in the Granada clash. One of these players is the defender, Ronald Araujo. Although the Uruguayan completed training normally yesterday, he was seen limping after the Porto match with cramps and has only recently returned from a month-long break due to injury.

Furthermore, Araujo is also an important member of the Uruguay international squad and can be called up by Marcelo Bielsa for the World Cup qualifying matches against Columbia and Brazil.

Thus, Xavi can rest Araujo in this match and opt for a Kounde-Christensen pairing in the center of the defense, with Cancelo and Balde taking up the flanks.

Gundogan also to be rested

Changes in the midfield are also expected, and the second important player who can be rested for this match is Ilkay Gundogan. Gundogan has played all the minutes in the last five games, and being the captain of Germany, is also expected to play a prominent role in his national side’s upcoming friendlies.

Xavi is expected to play Fermin Lopez in the German’s stead for this match, who has not yet disappointed Xavi after having gotten significant chances to play with the first team this season.

Xavi will also be forced to make a change in the attack, with Lewandowski out with an injury. Ferran Torres is likely to start as the main striker against Granada and will be supported from the flanks by Joao Felix and Lamine Yamal, as Raphinha is also out with an injury.

Ahmad Sarmad Ansari
Ahmad Sarmad Ansari
Ahmad Sarmad Ansari has been covering Spanish football as a writer for Barca News Network for the last one and a half year and as an amateur football fanatic for more than 10 years. He mainly covers on and off-field happenings taking place at Barcelona including transfer news, administrative changes, match reports, and any other eventful news coming out of the club.

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