Barcelona Can’t Afford to Drop Points at Home to Elche

    FC Barcelona vs Elche CF Preview 24/02/2021

    23 Feb 2021 | La Liga | Preview
    Barcelona Can’t Afford to Drop Points at Home to Elche
    sbonsi /

    Ronald Koeman’s men could only manage a 1-1 draw at home to Cadiz on Sunday, a result that leaves the Catalonians 8pts behind the league leaders Atletico and 5pts behind arch-rivals Real Madrid.

    Elche secured a vital home win on Saturday, beating Eibar 1-0, and while the club remains in the relegation zone, they are now just a point from safety.

    Barcelona head into Wednesday’s match as the form favourites with three wins, one draw and two defeats in their last six matches in all competitions.

    Elche have picked up just the one wins from their last six matches, all in La Liga, suffering three defeats and claiming two draws, so Barcelona should still be confident about winning this game.

    The hosts have never lost against Elche before, picking up seven wins and one draw from the pair’s previous eight encounters. De Jong and Puig were both on target when Barcelona beat Elche 2-0 in last month’s reverse league fixture and Koeman will be hoping for another comfortable victory in midweek.

    Amazingly, Elche have never scored against Barcelona before, with their best result against the Spanish giants being a 0-0 draw back in 2014.

    There is a good chance that at least three goals will be scored in Wednesday’s match as four of Barcelona’s and three of Elche’s last six outings have produced over 2.5 goals.

    Barcelona have only kept one clean sheet in their last six attempts but do have that amazing defensive record against Elche. Elche have failed to score in two of their last five league games but both teams have scored in three of their last six fixtures.

    Barcelona could be without the services of Ronald Araujo, Sergi Roberto, Philippe Coutinho and Ansu Fati on Wednesday, all of whom are suffering from injuries.

    Elche’s two main injury concerns are over Roberto Correa and Kevin Rodrigues, both are expected to miss the trip to Barcelona.

    Barcelona are the big favourites to win on Wednesday night as they have the home advantage, history and form going in their favour. The fact that Elche have never beaten or even scored against Barcelona before suggests that this game can only go in one direction.

    However, Barcelona haven’t looked good at the back of late with both teams scoring in five of their last six matches, something Elche can take some hope from.