Barcelona vs Vissel Kobe preview: latest team news, probable line-ups, score predictions & more
Blaugrana face the J-League side on Saturday in their second pre-season clash of the summer.
⚽ Team news
Barcelona will not risk Gerard Pique (thigh discomfort) and Hiroki Abe (hip) when choosing their selection in Saturday's fixture. Lionel Messi, Luis Suarez, Philippe Coutinho, Arthur and Arturo Vidal are not included in the squad list due to their vacations after Copa America performances.
As for our opponents, the Japanese side will mostly use their strongest options in order to provide decent performance in front of the home crowd. Among former Barcelona players, Andres Iniesta, David Villa and Sergi Samper are all expected to take part in Saturday's action. Also, it's worth mentioning that the J-League season hasn't finished yet so our opponent will be fit enough.
👉 Interesting facts
- Barcelona have never faced Vissel Kobe yet.
- The game will be held at Noevir Stadium (30.132 capacity).
- Saturday's clash will see Andres Iniesta playing against his former club for the first time ever.
- Barcelona will premier their 2019/20 away kit.
- Griezmann, Neto and De Jong will highly likely make their second appearances for Barca.
📋 Probable line-ups
We expect Valverde to get more balanced this time in order to start forming a regular starting XI. With Pique absent, Umtiti could take his place in the squad while De Jong and Griezmann will start right from the first minutes. Sergi Roberto will highly likely emerge in midfield where he started the match against Chelsea, while Carles Alena could appear on the right wing and support the attacking efforts of Antoine Griezmann.
Barcelona XI: Ter Stegen; Alba, Umtiti, Lenglet, Semedo; Busquets, De Jong, Sergi Roberto; Dembele, Griezmann, Alena.
🔮 Score predictions
SportsMole: Vissel Kobe 1-3 Barcelona
"Vissel Kobe will have an advantage considering that they are in the middle of their league season, but it is difficult to predict anything other than a Barca win given the distance in quality between the two teams. We fancy Griezmann to net his first goal for the club in a 3-1 success."
FootballExpert: Vissel Kobe 0-3 Barcelona
"Quality says a lot in football, and that is what is sure to win the day here. Even the second and third teamers at Barcelona have more of that than their Japanese counterparts, and it could well lead to a bit of a stroll."
🗣️ Quote from the manager
Valverde: "We hope that the fans and players will enjoy the game tomorrow. We are very grateful for this opportunity."