Our football match prediction:
There will be fireworks when Barcelona and Espanyol face each other in the Catalan derby on Saturday evening. Barca aim to build on back-to-back wins over the likes of Real Betis and Deportivo Alaves and the good news for the fans is that important attacker Luis Suarez has overcome his injury. The Uruguayan striker is likely to lead the line for the hosts against los Periquitos, whereas summer signing Ousmane Dembele could make his La Liga debut against Espanyol. Quique Sanchez Flores’ men did well to hold Sevilla to a 1-1 draw in the opening match of the season, but they suffered a shocking 1-0 loss to Leganes at home on Matchday 2 and, taking everything into account, the visitors are unlikely to spoil Barca’s party at Camp Nou. As always, a man to watch in the home team will be Leo Messi, who scored a brace in the 2-0 win over Deportivo Alaves.
Highlighted Player (Lionel Messi):
Lionel Messi is regarded as one of the best players in the history of football. He was born on 24 June, 1987 in Rosario and he began his football career at Newell’s Old Boys. At age 10 he was diagnosed with a growth hormone deficiency, but having realised his potential at a young age, Barcelona decided to pay for his treatment. Messi joined Barca in 2001 and he has been playing for the Camp Nou outfit ever since. The Argentine magician has won eight La Liga trophies with Barca and he helped the Catalan giants lift no less than four Champions League titles (2005/2006, 2008/2009, 2010/2011, 2014/2015). In the 2011/2012 La Liga campaign Messi scored 50 goals for Barca, while netting 14 goals in the 2011/2012 Champions League campaign. The five-time Golden Ball award winner has established himself as Barcelona’s all-time top scorer, but he has yet to win a trophy with Argentina national team at major tournaments. Leo Messi, though, has won Olympic Gold Medal (2008) and FIFA World Youth Championship (2005), with la Albiceleste.
Highlighted Team (Espanyol):
Espanyol are a Catalan club that plays in Spanish La Liga. Espanyol were founded in 1900 and their original name was Sociedad Espanola de Football. In 1901 the Catalan club changed its name to Club Espanol de Futbol. Los Periquitos used to play in bright yellow shirts in the past, but current colour of the team’s home kit is blue and white. Espanyol’s fiercest rivals are Barcelona and the two teams face each other in the Catalan derby (Derbi barceloni). Espanyol have always been in Barca’s shadow, but it has to be noted that los Periquitos have won four Copa del Rey (Spanish Cup trophies). The likes of Raul Tamudo, Jose Maria, Antonio Argiles and Mauricio Pochettino are players with most appearances for the Catalan outfit. Espanyol play their home games at Estadio Cornella-El Prat and the capacity of the stadium is 40,500. Los Periquitos have never participated in the Champions League.