Barcelona vs Real Madrid: Messi not fit to start Clasico

first_imgEl Clasico is back, with Barcelona playing host to Real Madrid in the first leg of the Copa del Rey semi-final at Camp Nou.The Catalans have had to work tremendously hard to get themselves into this position, notably staging a stunning second-leg comeback against Sevilla last week , while Madrid’s progress to this juncture has been rather more serene.Having lost the first match of each of their last two ties, Barca will have to be on the mettle from the beginning on Wednesday or face their biggest challenge yet as they strive for their 31st triumph in the tournament. Article continues below Editors’ Picks ‘There is no creativity’ – Can Solskjaer get Man Utd scoring freely again? ‘Everyone legged it on to the pitch!’ – How Foden went from Man City superfan to future superstar Emery out of jail – for now – as brilliant Pepe papers over Arsenal’s cracks What is Manchester United’s ownership situation and how would Kevin Glazer’s sale of shares affect the club? Game Barcelona vs Real Madrid Date Wednesday, January 6 Time 8pm GMT / 3pm ET Stream (US only) fubo TV (7-day free trial) TV Channel, Live Stream & How To Watch In the United States (US), the game can be watched live and on-demand with fuboTV (7-day free trial) .New users can sign up for a free seven-day trial of the live sports streaming service, which can be accessed via iOS, Android, Chromecast, Amazon Fire TV, Roku and Apple TV as well as on a web browser. US TV channel Online stream beIN Sports / beIN Sports en Espanol fubo TV (7-day free trial) In the United Kingdom (UK), the game will be streamed on Eleven Sports. UK TV channel Online stream N/A Eleven Sports Squads & Team News Position Barcelona squad Goalkeepers Ter Stegen, Ezkieta Defenders Pique, Semedo, Lenglet, Alba, Chumi, Vermaelen, Roberto, Todibo, Jeison Midfielders Rakitic, Busquets, Coutinho, Arthur, Vidal, Boateng, Samper, Alena Forwards L. Suarez, Dembele, Malcom, Messi Confirmed  Barcelona starting XI: Ter Stegen; Semedo, Pique, Lenglet, Alba; Rakitic, Busquets, Arthur; Malcom, Suarez, Coutinho Position Real Madrid squad Goalkeepers Navas, Casilla, Courtois Defenders Carvajal, Vallejo, Ramos, Nacho, Varane, Marcelo, Odriozoloa, Reguilon Midfielders Kroos, Modric, Casemiro, Valverde, Vazquez, Llorente, Asensio, Isco, Ceballos, B. Diaz Forwards Marcelo, Benzema, Bale, Vinicius Junior Confirmed Real Madrid starting XI: Navas; Carvajal, Ramos, Varane, Marcelo; Llorente, Modric, Kroos; Lucas, Benzema, Vinicius.Betting & Match Odds Barcelona can be backed at 4/5 to win this encounter, with Real Madrid offered at 7/2 by bet365 . Meanwhile, a draw is available at 3/1.Click here to see more offers for the game, including goalscoring markets, correct score predictions and more. Match Preview Vinicius Real MadridWhile La Liga and the Champions League may be the main target for both Barcelona and Real Madrid, having been paired together in the Copa del Rey, suddenly the knockout competition has taken on a new importance.The rivalry between these clubs runs deep and both will be determined to reach the final in Seville, which will be played on May 25.Throughout this competition, the respective teams have typically been shuffled to allow the star men to rest for the more important league matches, though that logic will now go out of the window for these clashes. Indeed, Barcelona already seemed to be thinking ahead to this match as they struggled to find their best form against Valencia at the weekend, fighting back to draw 2-2 but potentially losing their ace in Lionel Messi due to injury for this fixture.Nevertheless, on paper, it is Barca who hold the upper hand. They boast a six-point lead at the summit of the Primera Division ahead of Atletico Madrid and are eight marks clear of Real, having shown greater consistency over the season to date. Indeed, when the teams played earlier this term, Barca swept to a stunning 5-1 victory, without Messi, which proved the end of Julen Lopetegui in the Madrid hotseat, paving the way for Santiago Solari to take interim charge.Moreover, the manner in which Barca swept aside Sevilla 6-1 in the second leg of their quarter-final last week was utterly formidable and signified a team coming to the peak of its power.Nevertheless, the capital side are bullish about their prospects of causing an upset.“I play at Real Madrid, the best team in the world,” Vinicius Junior said ahead of the fixture . “I do not fear anything.”Historically, Barcelona have gotten the better of the Clasico, which was first played in 1929, with 113 overall wins to Real Madrid’s 99. Meanwhile, there have been 60 draws.As Los Blancos go chasing a historic 100th victory in the fixture, these are encounters that mean more to them, especially Solari, who is doing his best to show the board that he is worth the coaching job on a full-time basis.Barcelona, meanwhile, are the undoubted kings of the cup, having appeared in 23 successive rounds of the competition. Indeed, the last time they were knocked out before the final was February 2013, when Madrid beat them 4-2 on aggregate.The four-time defending champions will not want history to repeat itself.last_img read more


NP Governor says he was misquoted on Bachelet comments

Dr. Suren Raghavan said that he has the utmost respect for the High Commissioner and her work. “I am deeply disappointed by the spin that has been put on my discussion with the Sri Lankan Government delegation,” she said, noting that other news outlets in Sri Lanka were also continuing to significantly misrepresent the Human Rights Council process in Geneva.The High Commissioner said she and her Office remained committed to assisting the Government and people of Sri Lanka to implement the Human Rights Council’s resolutions 30/1 (2015) and 34/1 (2017). And last week the Human Rights Council in another resolution (40/1) gave the Government two more years to deliver fully on the set of commitments it originally accepted four years ago. (Colombo Gazette) Monday’s article in a local newspaper cited a member of the Government delegation, Northern Province Governor Dr. Suren Raghavan, claiming the High Commissioner “admitted that certain facts incorporated in the UNHRC report against Sri Lanka could not be condoned whatsoever.” It also said he claimed she had advised two of her senior officials who attended the meeting “to be more responsible and cautious hereafter.”“Neither of these claims are true,” Bachelet said. “Either the newspaper misunderstood the Governor, or the Governor misunderstood – or misquoted – me.” The High Commissioner said she stands fully behind the report and the oral statement she made when presenting it to the Human Rights Council, and that she believes it fairly and objectively reflects the situation in Sri Lanka. Bachelet said this week that a newspaper article quoting a senior Sri Lankan official “seriously misrepresents” her discussion of the recent UN Human Rights Office report on Sri Lanka with a Government delegation attending the Human Rights Council in Geneva on March 20. Northern Province Governor Dr. Suren Raghavan says he was misquoted by some local newspapers on comments he made with regards to the meeting between the Sri Lankan Government delegation and the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights, Michelle Bachelet in Geneva last week.The Governor said that his comments made to the media had been particularly misquoted by some English newspapers resulting in the High Commissioner’s office issuing a clarification. read more