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Barcelona defender anticipating a difficult challenge vs Rayo Vallecano: “They play tough football”

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Photo by PAU BARRENA/AFP via Getty Images

Barcelona defender Alejandro Balde has pressed that their upcoming away match against Rayo Vallecano is going to be a tough outing and despite the fact that most first-team players will be experiencing fatigue from the international break, the players will give their all.

Barcelona have a few injury issues as they prepare to make a trip to Estadio de Vallecas in Madrid on Saturday. This includes the loss of Gavi, Sergi Roberto and even goalkeeper Marc-Andre ter Stegen is not 100% fit.

One good thing, though, is the fact that Frenkie de Jong is expected to return, but it remains to be seen whether or not the Dutchman will start the game tomorrow.

An important fixture awaits

While speaking ahead of the game, Balde, who is expected to return to the starting XI, said that this fixture will mark an important time for Barcelona as Vallecano can be a tricky opponent.

“Yes, it is true that every return from the national team is a little difficult, but we have to focus on Saturday’s match. As I said, La Liga is always difficult, the opposing team plays tough football, but we have to focus on ourselves and go for the win,” he told the club’s official media channels.

Alejandro Balde is expected to return to starting XI against Vallecano. (Photo by ANDER GILLENEA/AFP via Getty Images)

Barcelona have not won a game against Vallecano in each of their last four attempts and a loss or even a draw would make things difficult for the team as they look to defend their La Liga crown,

“I think this is an important match for the team, we haven’t beaten Rayo Vallecano for two years, and I think a win on Saturday will break the curse of not winning.

“I think the start of the season was good. We are in fourth place in the league, and we are already close to qualifying for the Champions League. We are four points away from the top, but the season is still long and anything can happen,” he added.

Balde’s thoughts on Gavi’s injury

It has been confirmed that Gavi will miss the remainder of the season through ACL tear he suffered during the international break and when asked about it, Balde advised the young midfielder to be patient and suggested him not to rush to full fitness.

“I send him a lot of support, it is a very difficult and long injury, and the most important thing is for him to be patient because he must recover well, because the team will need him. I think we are losing a great player, a key player in the team, we are losing his ferocity,” he said. 

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