Four Barcelona players risk suspension against Elche with a booking against Madrid
Sergio Busquets, Raphinha, Franck Kessie and Ferran Torres have all been treading a tightrope in recent weeks. All four Catalan stars have played Barcelona’s last two games on four yellow cards and faced a very real possibility of missing El Clasico through an accumulation of cards.
Through careful play against both Valencia and Athletic Club, the four players have successfully made it to the big game against Real Madrid. However, the suspension is inevitable and continues to stare them in the eye.
If any of the aforementioned players pick up a booking at the Camp Nou on Sunday night, they will miss Barcelona’s trip to Elche in the first week of April. Nevertheless, Xavi will value their presence tonight far more than in the game against La Liga’s bottom-placed team.
With Pedri Gonzalez unavailable for El Clasico, Franck Kessie and Sergio Busquets are both expected to start in midfield on the night. They will likely be accompanied by Frenkie de Jong with Gavi positioned as a false-left winger.
The Golden Boy’s role on the left implies that Ferran Torres is expected to start on the bench. Yet, his involvement in the second half is almost assured.
Meanwhile, Raphinha is also seen as a starter for the big clash in Catalonia. The Brazilian has played at an exceptional level for Xavi’s side since Ousmane Dembele’s injury and will look to continue his good form on the right wing against Real Madrid.
Barcelona hope to extend their lead on the La Liga table to 12 points with a win over Real Madrid later today. Given the weight of the clash, it is very likely that some of the players with four yellow cards will serve a suspension against Elche.
That, however, will not worry the manager considering that any player missing the trip will be well-rested for the next Clasico on April 6th.