Barcelona have announced the squad list that will travel to the opposite side of Catalonia to take on UE Cornella in the Copa del Rey round of 32. The biggest takeaway is the inclusion of Alex Collado for derby day. The youngster is no stranger to the Cornella outfit and scored against them almost exactly a month ago with the Barcelona B team.
Konrad de la Fuente and Ilaix Moriba are included as well, and might get the chance to see some well-deserved time on the pitch for the senior team. On the other hand, Antoine Griezmann and Ousmane Dembele have been called up as well, likely as emergency backups if push comes to shove.
Frenkie de Jong has been rested completely, which seems fair, given he is the outfield player to play most minutes under Ronald Koeman this season. A rest, even for one game, can do a world of good to him after playing 240 consecutive minutes in the Spanish Super Cup.
Similarly, Jordi Alba has been dropped as well, which will, hopefully, benefit him and restore his form. Sergino Dest is unfit, as confirmed by Ronald Koeman, and will miss the derby. Lionel Messi is banned and does not travel, either.
Full list: ter Stegen, Neto, Arnau Tenas; Mingueza, Lenglet, Araujo, Mingueza, Firpo; Busquets, Pjanic, Puig, Pedri, Matheus, Ilaix, Collado; Griezmann, Braithwaite, Dembele, Konrad, Trincao
Absentees: Dest, Pique, Messi, Coutinho, Alba, Roberto, de Jong, Fati
Tomorrow is the perfect chance for Koeman to rotate his options and see what youngsters can do. The likes of Alex Collado, Konrad de la Fuente, Riqui Puig have spent too much time on the sidelines, and deserve some minutes tomorrow. Additionally, giving Ilaix Moriba some minutes on the pitch might help his cause as well.
Source: FC Barcelona
Official: Barcelona confirm Pedri muscular injury
All victories come with a cost and Barcelona’s great triumph over Sevilla is no exception. Sadly, the Catalans’ young prodigy, Pedri, had to leave the pitch in the second half of the clash and now, the club has officially confirmed that the 18-year-old had sustained a muscular injury.
As of right now, however, we still don’t know how serious it is and we’ll have to wait for further information, which is most likely to arrive tomorrow. Unfortunately, the early speculations are not good as it seems Pedri could indeed be out of commission for a couple of weeks at least.
Needless to say, that’s a huge hit for Barcelona since the schedule is unrelenting. Soon, it will be time to face Sevilla again in the Copa del Rey and also Paris Saint-Germain in the Champions League. Doing so without Pedri could indeed be troublesome.
But we also have to wonder how did it come to this injury. The 18-year-old is a key member of the squad so it’s understandable Ronald Koeman would want him to play all the time.
However, that might be the very crux of the problem too. With so little rest in-between the games, it was just a matter of time before Pedri’s body could take no more.
Still, not all is lost and he should be back in time to help Barcelona finish the season strong. And besides, now the youngster can finally get some well-deserved rest.
Hopefully the team can manage without him for a short period of time.